Tom Blomqvist and Meyer Shank Racing bowed out of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with a fantastic win at the Motul Petit Le Mans as Tom and the team recorded back to back victories at the circuit to sign off the season in style.
Tom Blomqvist, the 2022 and 2023 Daytona 24 Hour race winner and 2022 IMSA champion has experienced another successful season with the MSR team, notching up three wins, three podiums and two pole positions in the debut season for the highly competitive GTP class. Tom and teammate, Colin Braun, were joined behind the wheel of the #60 MSR Acura ARX-06 by the returning Helio Castroneves for a race weekend that promised plenty of action. Heading into Saturday's qualifying session, Tom would be elected to qualify behind the wheel of the #60 in challenging conditions and he would secure fourth place on the grid for Sunday's race with a time of a 1.15.847 as rivals around him improved their times in the final moments. Tom would take the green flag in the #60 Acura ARX-06 and ran second for just shy of an hour when he fell victim to the heavy traffic at the final turn. Pushed to the outside by an LMP2 competitor, Blomqvist was bumped by a GTD contender, damaging the car’s left-rear suspension. Tom carefully brought the #60 back to the pits where the team quickly replaced a bent toe link. Castroneves returned to the race following the contact running ninth, one lap down. Driving at one point with rear-wing damage after contact. However, the car would soon be back on the lead lap and running sixth when he pitted with 5:52 remaining, handing the car over to Colin Braun. With two hours remaining, the MSR Acura was running ninth in the order. With just under an hour to go the team made the strategic and race-winning decision to stay out during a 30-minute caution period while several other GTP cars pitted for fuel. Colin would then make a decisive move to secure the lead on the restart and never looked back despite a nail-biting second caution period and restart with under 15-minutes to go. Once again dominating the restart, Braun held onto the lead to secure back to back victories and a third Petit Le Mans victory for MSR, leap frogging the team to third place in the championship standings at the end of the campaign. Tom Blomqvist: “That race was up and down, left and right, it was crazy. What a fantastic job by the team, I couldn’t be more proud and grateful to be a part of it. What we have achieved in the past two seasons is simply incredible. Good things happen to good people. We’re a hard working bunch and we deserve it. Colin at the end there, absolutely fantastic. The guy is a killer on the restarts and I’m very grateful to be a part of this team.” "This season has thrown everything at us, but I have certainly enjoyed every moment of it and these brilliant two years with the team at MSR, which has seen some very special memories for me. It's now time to rest and reset, before getting back to full focus on 2024!"