Milner edges Taylor in IMSA pole battle at VIR

Virginia native Tommy Milner in the No. 4 Corvette C8.R scored his first IMSA pole position on Friday after besting Jordan Taylor in the sister No.3 car by an astonishing 0.003s during qualifying for this weekend’s Michelin GT Challenge at VIR.

“It’s a little bit relieving in some sense,” Milner said. “Obviously, the race is the most important thing, but it’s good to get these little victories like in qualifying.

“It doesn’t mean everything, but it means something, for sure. Most of all, I’m happy with our Corvette. The balance has been good all weekend so far. (The) pace has been good, and I’m happy that I could put it all together finally in qualifying and get a pole.”

Milner’s best time was a 1m40.263s, while Taylor managed a 1m40.266s after leading for most of the 15 minute session.

The No. 79 WeatherTech Racing Porsche 911 RSR, which led the field in Free Practice 1 and 2, trailed 1.179s behind the No. 4 Corvette for third. That was down to the fact that silver-rated Cooper MacNeil qualified the car as opposed to Porsche factory driver Kevin Estre, who had been quickest in the practice sessions.

The No. 96 Turner Motorsports BMW M6 GT3 rebounded from a water leak in Free Practice 2 to secure pole position in GT Daytona, with Robby Foley setting a time of 1m43.809s to beat out Madison Snow by 0.236s.

The No. 1 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini Huracan also recovered from a mechanical problem in this morning’s practice session to score its spot on the front row.

Trent Hindman in the No. 16 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R ended the session in third with a time of 1m44.145s. Roman De Angelis, driving the No. 23 Heart of Racing Aston Martin Vantage, was just 0.016s behind Hindman.

In the qualifying session reserved for points, Heart of Racing scored a 1-2 with Ross Gunn in the No. 23 Vantage leading Alex Riberas in the No. 27 Aston Martin.

Crucially, the No. 9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R, which currently leads the championship by just 32 points, was not allowed to take part in the session after the team touched the car in violation of the rules during the first half of qualifying. This cost the team 11 points to the No. 1 Paul Miller Racing Lamborghini, further tightening the championship battle.

GTLM RESULTS

GTD RESULTS

UP NEXT: Tomorrow’s Michelin GT Challenge at VIR is set for 12:10 p.m. ET and airs live on NBC. The Michelin Pilot Challenge series will end the weekend with their race on Sunday afternoon at 2:10 p.m. ET.