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As usual at Laguna Seca, traffic was heavy
Monterey Sportscar Championship, Laguna Seca, 15 September 2019: As usual at Laguna Seca, traffic was heavy

IMSA once again came to Laguna Seca for the penultimate round in the 2019 Championship. There was a buzz of excitement in the air at Laguna this year, as the track has scheduled a motorsports extravaganza in the back-to-back weekend events of IMSA, then the INDY car finale on 22 September, the week after. This all followed the Monterey Historics in August which, this year, featured IMSA cars of old where around 80,000 spectators were treated to some great sights over the span of that event. This week though, in the Laguna Seca IMSA 2019, we saw the current generation of cars.

Race preview

The Cadillac Dallara of Felipe Nasr and Pipo Derani was almost always first in line waiting to go out for practice
Monterey Sportscar Championship, Laguna Seca, 15 September 2019: The Cadillac Dallara of Felipe Nasr and Pipo Derani was almost always first in line waiting to go out for practice. They would finish third, even after a wild off-road excursion by Derani, which wiped out a whole bunch of track signage

Laguna Seca is a unique venue, in Monterey California. It is quite near the Pacific Ocean, and the weather in September can be cool and foggy early in the morning, but it rarely gets too warm (a drastic contrast to some of the earlier IMSA events this summer). The track is built on an old US Army base, and there is a lot of sand and dirt around. Although the track was extended in years gone by to 2.25 miles in order to accommodate the Moto GP, it is still a difficult place to pass, and the IMSA races in recent years have turned into a battle of strategy and tactics. The fastest car does not usually win, it is tyre management, pit strategy, and keeping your nose clean that usually rules the day here.

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