Honda Motorsports Weekend, July 22-23 – NSX Highlights
Acura GT3 team comes back strong in IMSA competition while Honda NSX catches tough break in Japanese GT racing.
Last weekend brought Hondas in action only in two races. However, both included NSXs racing at very high levels of Grand Touring racing. Here’s how the races went for NSXs in the United States and in Japan’s top GT series.
IMSA Weathertech SportsCar Championship at Lime Rock Park
Michael Shank Racing’s pair of Acura NSX GT3s battled through a difficult race during IMSA’s all-GT weekend at Lime Rock in Connecticut. After Katherine Legge qualified the #93 car 8th on the grid, a penalty for avoidable contact cost the car a lap.
Legge threw down the race’s quickest lap several times while clawing back time. She turned the car over to codriver Andy Lally, who worked the Acura back to 6th place late in the race. He then moved up to fifth position in the final laps.
Jeff Segal and Oz Negri started the team’s #86 NSX from 12th place and worked up to third place by the car’s first pit stop. They crossed the finish line in ninth place, giving two Top 10 finishes for the Michael Shank crew.
Acura now trails Ferrari by just six points in the GT Daytona class’ manufacturer points for 2017.
Michael Shank Racing will return to IMSA competition at Road America on August 6.
Super GT Series at Sportsland SUGO
The NSX also saw action in Japan this weekend. The Honda-badged, tubbed versions of the car looked strong at the technical SUGO circuit. However, bad luck cost them chances at the win.
Tomoki Nojiri put the #8 ARTA NSX on pole in the GT500 class, but he ceded the lead to Naoki Yamamoto in the #100 Raybrig NSX. An ill-timed safety car dropped Yamamoto from the lead, however, and cost the Raybrig car a chance at a victory.
Polesitter Nojiri also spun the ARTA NSX on Lap 16, which cost them a chance at victory. With just two laps left, Takashi Kogure had a chance at overtaking for the lead in the #17 Keihin Honda NSX. However, the car’s engine cover blew off the car and forced Kogure to pit.
The #8 ARTA NSX finished best of the Hondas in fifth place, which proved disappointing after NSXs qualified in the top three spots.
TCR Series Germany at Zandvoort
The German touring-car series headed to Netherlands for this round. Championship leader Josh Files failed to score a victory for the first time this year. However, he still managed a podium in Race 1 with his Honda Civic Type R TCR. Steve Kirsch was the highest-finishing Honda in Race 2 with a fifth-place finish.
British driver Files still leads the championship comfortably by more than 100 points with four of seven races completed.