Lewis Hamilton’s grid drop for Sunday’s Belgian Grand Prix is now up to 55 places after Mercedes elected to take another complete new power unit on Saturday morning. Formula 1 drivers’ championship leader Hamilton confirmed on Thursday that he would be taking a grid drop for exceeding the number of power unit components during the season. Hamilton was forced to use up more of his five permitted components for the year than planned earlier in the year after issues arose. Mercedes took a complete new power unit on Friday ahead of both FP1 and FP2, resulting in a 30-place grid drop. Ahead of the final practice session on Saturday morning in Spa, the team confirmed that it had taken a third new power
First practice for this weekend’s Michelin GT Challenge, a GT Le Mans and GT Daytona-only round of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at VIRginia International Raceway is in the books. Fastest times were set by Earl Bamber in the No. 912 Porsche North America Porsche 911 RSR (1:43.232, GTLM and overall) and Madison Snow in the No. 48 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini Huracán GT3 (1:45.722, GTD). Bamber told IMSA Radio’s Shea Adam, “It’s a good way to start the weekend. It’s a new surface; it already seems quicker than last year. The guys at VIR have done a great job to repave it. It’s been pretty difficult the last couple races for us.” But the session was more notable because it featured
Michael McDowell, driving for Richard Childress Racing, posted the fastest lap in Friday’s opening Xfinity Series practice at Road America. McDowell toured the road course at 108.847 mph. He was followed by Owen Kelly (108.839 mph), who is driving for Joe Gibbs Racing. Next was Alex Tagliani (108.687 mph) for Team Penske. He was followed by Justin Marks (108.279), who won at Mid-Ohio two weeks ago, and Brendan Gaughan (107.780).