Wagner Breaks His Own Mazda MX-5 Cup Qualifying Lap Record at Mid-Ohio
 June 8, 2024| 
  • Series News
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LEXINGTON, Ohio (June 8, 2024) - The fastest driver in Friday practice, Gresham Wagner (No. 5 McCumbee McAleer Racing), continued the trend Saturday in qualifying for Round Seven of the Whelen Mazda MX-5 Cup presented by Michelin. Wagner broke his own qualifying lap record in the process.

 

After a year away, the Whelen Mazda MX-5 Cup was back at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course and the track’s fresh pavement met the cars’ new for 2024 Michelin tires for the first time.

 

Wagner’s Whelen Mazda MX-5 Cup qualifying lap record of 1:35.3177 had stood since 2020, but was toppled Saturday morning with a 1:35.283 lap at Mid-Ohio. The 2021 Mazda MX-5 Cup Champion was relieved he set his fastest lap early in the session before he got caught in traffic.

 

“I could tell I was a bit faster than everyone around me,” Wagner said. “I managed to get a lap in there pretty early so no one could really do anything about it. I'm looking forward to the race.”

 

Wagner will share the front row with his teammate Nate Cicero (No. 83 McCumbee McAleer Racing) and has Connor Zilisch (No. 72 BSI Racing) starting behind him. The top 10 cars on the grid are covered by 0.052-second. This includes the top qualifying rookie, Julian DaCosta (No. 78 JTR Motorsports Engineering).

 

Having won at Mid-Ohio twice before, Wagner knows what it takes to get to the top step of the podium.

 

“The pack shuffles, but you just don’t want to get shuffled too far back. The track ebbs and flows, but more than anything, there's a couple of breaks with good passing opportunities. So, just making sure you stay clean the whole time don't over drive or start dropping tires because there's no runoff here at Mid-Ohio. I definitely need to keep the car on the track and try to be there for the finish.”

 

Saturday’s Round Seven race at Mid-Ohio will go green at 3:25pm ET with live streaming available on the RACER YouTube channel and IMSA.tv.

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