- Thompson and Hanley take top spot in Silver
- Swearingin and van Berlo quickest in Pro-Am
- Garrett and Schwartz fastest in Am
The sun was shining, and the birds were singing as the Pirelli GT4 America field took to the track, with engines roaring and adding to the Jazz Fest's cheerful melodies. NOLA Motorsports Park is the host of the second round of the 2023 season. As New Orleans is most famous for its vibrant festivals, the forty-two cars wandered down NOLA, creating a great parade of colorful liveries.
A short red flag came and went in the closing stage of the session, but drivers were able to take advantage of most of the session without any interruptions. NOLA’s famed 16 turns, 2.75-mile layout gave way to an action-packed practice session, where teams were able to test their machines and tweak their set-ups ahead of practice 2 later in the afternoon.
The No. 999 Hanley Motorsports Toyota Gazoo Racing GR Supra GT4’s final attempt at the fastest lap was successful as the team laid a 1:43.228 towards the end of the session, thanks to Canadian Parker Thompson and Daniel Hanley.
Zac Anderson and John Dubets with Auto Technic Racing went second fastest, commanding their No. 51 BMW M4 GT4, edging out Kevin Boehm and Kenton Koch, who rounded off the top three in with their No. 92 Random Vandals Racing BMW M4 GT4.
In the Pro-Am Class, Curt Swearingin and Kay van Berlo with the No. 7 ACI Motorsports Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 RS Clubsport earned the fastest overall time thanks to their flying lap time of 1:43.675.
Flying Lizard Motorsports were sitting at the top of the leaderboard earlier in the session but eventually landed in third to round off the top three in class. Elias Sabo and Andy Lee, on board the No. 8 Flying Lizard Motorsports Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT, were just a mere 0.063 seconds behind the second-place finisher, the No. 24 Heart of Racing Team Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4 of Gray Newell and Canadian Roman DeAngelis, who is subbing for Ian James, who is currently at Spa-Francorchamps.
The No. 44 Rooster Hall Racing BMW M4 GT4 topped the charts, with Colin Garrett and Johan Schwartz laying down the fastest time in class in addition to earning the seventh-fastest time overall. The Race Two winners from the previous round in Sonoma, California, Terry Borcheller and Nicholas Shanny, followed in second place in the No. 20 Carrus Callas Raceteam Toyota Gazoo Racing GR Supra GT4
The No. 428 van der Steur Racing Aston Martin Vantage AMR GT4, co-driven by Coby Shield and Brady Behrman, completed the Top 3 after finishing just 0.311 seconds behind.
Practice 2 starts at 4:30 PM CT, followed by Qualifying at 10:20 AM and 10:40 AM on Saturday.
All race sessions are streamed live on the GT World YouTube page. Join Ash Vandelay on Twitch by following the SROMotorsports channel. Vandelay hosts six-hour programs Saturday and Sunday, where she is joined by drivers while chatting with fans and giving an interesting insight into that day's races.
Tickets are on-sale at www.showpass.com/sro-nola with enhanced offerings including the Patriot Car Corral, recently announced car show – NOLA Motor Showoff presented by The Bomb Factory – and trackside camping. Starting at just $10 dollars, its fun for the whole family with kids 12 and under free with paid adult.