BRASELTON, Ga. (13 October 2023) – Meyer Shank Racing (MSR) with Curb-Agajanian made a valiant bid for the Motul Pole Award, but will have to settle for a fourth place starting position for Saturday’s Motul Petit Le Mans following a dramatic qualifying session in challenging conditions at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta on Friday.
MSR changed tires three times in the 20-minute session as Tom Blomqvist continued to improve his times through the session, landing atop the order with each new fast lap before setting a quick time of 1:15.847-seconds in the No. MSR GTP machine. Blomqvist went to the pole three times as the No. 60 Acura stood at the top of the pylon with only two seconds remaining in the session. Unfortunately other runners were able to improve their times in the closing moments of the session and Blomqvist finished fourth.
“It was an interesting session with the wet weather and it wasn’t easy to manage for anyone,” said Blomqvist. “It was super slick for the slick tires, so we came in for wets then came in again for a new set of wets. It was pretty hectic out there. I just didn’t get the lap in at the end. Fourth is alright and we can race from there. Obviously I’m a little bit disappointed to not get pole, but it’s a long race.”
Blomqvist is coming off a successful rookie test at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, preparing for a full-season with MSR in the NTT INDYCAR Series. Saturday will mark the close of the team’s Acura factory effort, which has yielded three IMSA championships as well as wins in iconic events including the Rolex 24 At Daytona wins in the 2022 running of Petit Le Mans on the way to securing the IMSA DPi championship.
Blomqvist is joined by Colin Braun and four-time Indy 500 winner Helio Castroneves as the team looks to repeat its 2022 triumph. MSR also won overall in 2016 with a Honda-powered Ligier.
Petit Le Mans is set to take the green flag at 11:40 a.m. ET on Saturday. The race will be streamed live on Peacock beginning at 11:30 a.m. ET, with USA Network television coverage beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET. The event will also be broadcast live on Sirius XM channel 207.