CORVETTE RACING AT LE MANS: Focus Turns to Race Day

Teams calls GTE Pro challenge biggest of team’s Le Mans 17 attempts

2016-06-17


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  • Eight class wins in 16 races at Le Mans for sports car racing’s top GT team
  • Gavin, Milner, Taylor defending GTE Pro class winners in No. 64 Corvette
  • A Le Mans win would be No. 100 overall for Corvette Racing program

ZURICH (June 17, 2016) – Corvette Racing has turned its attention to race setup and strategy with qualifying now complete for this year’s running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The pair of Chevrolet Corvette C7.R completed the pair of two-hour qualifying sessions Thursday night, and work will begin Friday on optimizing the race cars for 24 hours of intense competition in the GTE Pro class.

Corvette Racing arrived at Le Mans for the 17th time and in search of a ninth class victory. Already, the team has won the Rolex 24 At Daytona and Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring this season in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship in North America. For this weekend’s twice-around-the-clock race, Corvette Racing will rely on the experience and knowledge it gained from those victories with the 2016 Corvette C7.R.

Oliver Gavin was the fastest driver in the No. 64 Corvette C7.R during Wednesday and Thursday’s qualifying sessions with a lap of 3:55.848 (129.245 mph) to qualify 13th. He, Tommy Milner and Jordan Taylor won Le Mans last year in the GTE Pro class as Corvette Racing completed a Triple Crown season – winning Daytona, Sebring and Le Mans.

In the No. 63 Corvette C7.R, Antonio Garcia was the quickest of its three drivers with a lap 3:57.967 (128.127 mph) for the 14th position. Garcia is driving with Jan Magnussen and Ricky Taylor, who is making his first start with the team at Le Mans.

The 24 Hours of Le Mans starts at 3 p.m. CET on Saturday, Radiolemans.com will have live audio coverage.

OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 64 KONICA MINOLTA/MOBIL 1/SIRIUSXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – QUALIFIED 13TH: “With qualifying behind us we can turn our attention to working on our race strategy, the setup and all the details which are the strength of Corvette Racing. Certainly everyone understands the challenge we face. We were in a situation a year ago where things looked dim with just one car for the race; but we executed well on the track and in the pits, the strategy was good, and we ended up on the top step of the podium. That has to be our mindset of our team moving ahead to Saturday. Our Corvette C7.R is proven and reliable. I think after the rain we’ve had the last couple of days that Jordan, Tommy and I each feel comfortable with how the car felt in all kinds of conditions.”

ANTONIO GARCIA, NO. 63 KONICA MINOLTA/MOBIL 1/SIRIUSXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – QUALIFIED 14TH: “It wasn’t very easy in practice or qualifying. We’ve had little dry time which meant we couldn’t quite go through the program we had planned. So we made sure Jan and Ricky got enough laps in the car in the dry before the rain came in. Thursday’s weather meant we couldn’t improve on Wednesday’s time but at the same time we learned some more about the car in the wet. We have to focus on what we have and race with that – 100 percent until the end.”

DOUG FEHAN, CORVETTE RACING PROGRAM MANAGER: “We’ve said for some time that this year’s Le Mans would be the biggest challenge that Corvette Racing has faced in our 17 attempts here. There has been nothing over the last two days that should lead anyone to think otherwise. The biggest assets we have are our experience and ‘never-give-up’ attitude that has helped Corvette Racing to eight Le Mans wins and the five Triple Crown victories in a row. Anything can happen at this race, and that’s what we love about Le Mans. It should be a great battle, and we’re looking forward to adding to our Le Mans legacy.”

Le Mans 24 Hours (times in Central European Time)

  • Practice/qualifying: 4-8 p.m. (practice), 10 p.m.-midnight CET (qualifying), Wednesday, June 15
  • Qualifying:               7-9 p.m., 10 p.m.-midnight CET, Thursday, June 16
  • Warm-up:                 9-9:45 a.m. CET, Saturday, June 18
  • Race:                        3 p.m. Saturday-3 p.m. CET, Sunday, June 18

 

Corvette Racing 24 Hours of Le Mans Record

Year

Finish

Class

Car

Drivers

2000

3rd

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Pilgrim/Collins/Freon

 

4th

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Fellows/Kneifel/Bell

2001

1st

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Fellows/O’Connell/Pruett

 

2nd

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Pilgrim/Collins/Freon

2002

1st

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Fellows/O’Connell/Gavin

 

2nd

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Pilgrim/Collins/Freon

2003

2nd

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Gavin/Collins/Pilgrim

 

3rd

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Fellows/O’Connell/Freon

2004

1st

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Gavin/Beretta/Magnussen

 

2nd

GTS

Corvette C5-R

Fellows/O’Connell/Papis

2005

1st

GT1

Corvette C6.R

Beretta/Gavin/Magnussen

 

2nd

GT1

Corvette C6.R

Fellows/O’Connell/Papis

2006

1st

GT1

Corvette C6.R

Beretta/Gavin/Magnussen

 

7th

GT1

Corvette C6.R

Fellows/O’Connell/Papis

2007

2nd

GT1

Corvette C6.R

Fellows/O’Connell/Magnussen

 

14th

GT1

Corvette C6.R

Beretta/Gavin/Papis

2008

2nd

GT1

Corvette C6.R

Fellows/O’Connell/Magnussen

 

3rd

GT1

Corvette C6.R

Beretta/Gavin/Papis

2009

1st

GT1

Corvette C6.R

O'Connell/Magnussen/Garcia

 

4th

GT1

Corvette C6.R

Gavin/Beretta/Fassler

2010

10th (DNF)

GT2

Corvette C6.R

Gavin/Beretta/Collard

 

12th (DNF)

GT2

Corvette C6.R

O'Connell/Magnussen/Garcia

2011

1st

GTE Pro

Corvette C6.R

Beretta/Milner/Garcia

 

14th (DNF)

GTE Pro

Corvette C6.R

Gavin/Magnussen/Westbrook

2012

5th

GTE Pro

Corvette C6.R

Garcia/Magnussen/Taylor

 

6th

GTE Pro

Corvette C6.R

Gavin/Milner/Westbrook

2013

4th

GTE Pro

Corvette C6.R

Garcia/Magnussen/Taylor

 

7th

GTE Pro

Corvette C6.R

Gavin/Milner/Westbrook

2014

2nd

GTE Pro

Corvette C7.R

Garcia/Magnussen/Taylor

 

4th

GTE Pro

Corvette C7.R

Gavin/Milner/Westbrook

2015

DNS

GTE Pro

Corvette C7.R

Garcia/Magnussen/Briscoe

 

1st

GTE Pro

Corvette C7.R

Gavin/Milner/Taylor

Totals

8 wins

16 starts

 

 

 

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Corvette Racing Le Mans 2016

Corvette Racing; 24 Hours of Le Mans; Le Mans, FRANCE; June 18-19, 2016; C7.R #63 driven by Jan Magnussen, Antonio Garcia, and Ricky Taylor; C7.R #64 driven by Oliver Gavin, Tommy Milner, and Jordan Taylor (Richard Prince/Chevrolet photo).

Corvette Racing Le Mans 2016

Corvette Racing; 24 Hours of Le Mans; Le Mans, FRANCE; June 18-19, 2016; C7.R #63 driven by Jan Magnussen, Antonio Garcia, and Ricky Taylor; C7.R #64 driven by Oliver Gavin, Tommy Milner, and Jordan Taylor (Richard Prince/Chevrolet photo).

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