CORVETTE RACING AT LIME ROCK PARK: Consistency Lands Milner Third on GTLM Grid

Jul 23 2016 Randall Shinn 2016, Lime Rock Comments Off on CORVETTE RACING AT LIME ROCK PARK: Consistency Lands Milner Third on GTLM Grid

CORVETTE RACING AT LIME ROCK PARK: Consistency Lands Milner Third on GTLM Grid

Championship-leading No. 4 Chevrolet Corvette C7.R to start on second row Saturday

  • Four consecutive laps under 51 seconds for Milner at Lime Rock
  • Magnussen qualifies No. 3 Corvette on third row
  • First Lime Rock event for Corvette Racing since 2013

LAKEVILLE, Conn. (July 22, 2016) – Corvette Racing’s two Chevrolet Corvette C7.Rs will start Saturday’s Northeast Grand Prix from the second and third rows of the GT Le Mans (GTLM) class following qualifying for the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.

Tommy Milner qualified third in the GTLM championship-leading No. 4 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Chevrolet Corvette C7.R with Jan Magnussen sixth in the No. 3 Corvette.

Milner, who shares the GTLM Driver’s Championship lead with teammate Oliver Gavin, posted a best lap time of 50.858 (104.3 mph) in the 15-minute qualifying session. It was a tight fight in the class with the top five cars within 0.267 seconds.

Milner may have had the most consistent qualifying effort with four consecutive laps under the 51-second barrier. He finished 0.110 seconds behind pole-winner and ex-Corvette Racing teammate Richard Westbrook, and the two will be in line formation for the 3 p.m. ET start live on FOX.

Magnussen, who will team with Antonio Garcia, record a best lap of 51.264 (103.5 mph)

Both Corvettes showed well in Friday’s two practice sessions. Gavin was quickest in GTLM in the first practice, and Milner and Magnussen were third and fourth in the second session.

As expected, the biggest hurdles Friday were traffic and heat. More than 30 cars shared the 1.474-mile track in the two practice sessions, but the field qualified by class. The constants throughout the day, though, were the temperatures. The ambient temperature at the start of qualifying was 97 F with a track temperature of 114 – remarkably 19 degrees cooler than the highest reading of the day at 133F.

This is the first race at Lime Rock Park for Corvette Racing since 2013. Garcia and Magnussen were second in the American Le Mans Series’ GT class in 2012 and 2013. Gavin leads the team with three victories.

The 2016-spec Corvette C7.R is an updated racecar due to changes in Automobile Club de l’Ouest regulations for top-level GT cars that compete in the IMSA GTLM class. There are a number of aerodynamic changes including a larger splitter at the front and diffuser at the rear of the Corvette. Side skirts and a repositioned wing also are among the most notable changes, along with updated safety features that are now mandated on all GTLM cars.

The two-hour, 40-minute Northeast Grand Prix is scheduled for 3:05 p.m. ET on Saturday, July 23 with live coverage on FOX. IMSA Radio coverage and Chevrolet on-board cameras will be available on IMSA.com.

CORVETTE RACING QUOTES

TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SIRIUS-XM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – QUALIFIED THIRD IN GTLM:: "Three laps under 51 seconds… the car was really good. We made some good changes before qualifying. It’s always a risk to make those changes but today they really worked. So the engineers get a big pat on the back today. They had it all figured out for qualifying. I’m happy but I made a mistake on one of my quickest laps at Turn Six, so I’m a little bummed about that. I was trying hard and pushing hard. But at the end of the day, starting third here is so huge. It’s going to be so easy to get caught in traffic. It seems like the further up the field you are, the better the breaks go for you. I’m looking forward to keeping my nose stuck up behind the Ford or the BMW. I’ll follow them around for a little bit and if I can get around them, I’ll take it for sure. It’s going to be really tough for all us physically with the heat for the crew guys. It’s hot everywhere around here. It will be about minimizing mistakes and not trying to be too aggressive and too anxious in traffic. We have to realize the race is two hours, 40 minutes and not a 30- or 40-minute sprint."

JAN MAGNUSSEN, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SIRIUS-XM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – QUALIFIED SIXTH IN GTLM:: "The balance on the No. 3 Corvette wasn’t great. It was difficult to find a good lap time, plus it’s super-hot. Once the lap time was there, it was difficult to improve on anything. I’m disappointed but we will see what tomorrow gives us."

DOUG FEHAN, CORVETTE RACING PROGRAM MANAGER: "Qualifying today at Lime Rock was a prime example of great car, great engineering and great execution by Tommy. With only hundredths of a second between the top cars, starting position will take on a more important role based the incredibly short 1.474-mile layout. Passing here is extremely difficult, and running with the GTD and PC cars presents just another monumental challenge. In addition, with temps in the 90s, every member of our team will be thoroughly tested. In the end, we all know we have the personnel and equipment to get both Corvette C7.Rs to the front. Stay tuned to FOX at 3 p.m. tomorrow because all this will make for a great show for our fans!"

2016 WeatherTech SportsCar Championship – GTLM Standings (After six of 10 events)

Team Standings
Driver Standings Manufacturer Standings
1. Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 192
2. Ryan Briscoe/Richard Westbook – 187
3. Bill Auberlen/Dirk Werner – 170
4. Earl Bamber/Frederic Makowiecki – 166
T5. Antonio Garcia/Jan Magnussen – 164
T5. Giancarlo Fisichella/Toni Vilander – 164
1. No. 4 Corvette Racing – 192
2. No. 67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing – 187
3. No. 25 BMW Team RLL – 170
4. No. 912 Porsche North America – 166
5. No. 3 Corvette Racing – 164
1. Chevrolet – 192
2. Ford – 185
3. Porsche – 181
4. BMW – 174
5. Ferrari – 174

Corvette Racing at Lime Rock Park

Year Class Drivers Result Car Notes
2004 GTS Fellows/O’Connell 2nd Corvette C5-R  
  GTS Beretta/Gavin 1st Corvette C5-R Beretta pole, fastest race lap
2005 GT1 Fellows/O’Connell 2nd Corvette C6.R  
  GT1 Beretta/Gavin 1st Corvette C6.R Beretta pole, fastest race lap
2006 GT1 Fellows/O’Connell 2nd Corvette C6.R  
  GT1 Beretta/Gavin 4th Corvette C6.R Beretta fastest race lap
2007 GT1 Magnussen/O’Connell 2nd Corvette C6.R O’Connell fastest race lap
  GT1 Beretta/Gavin 1st Corvette C6.R  
2008 GT1 Magnussen/O’Connell 1st Corvette C6.R  
  GT1 Beretta/Gavin 2nd Corvette C6.R Gavin pole, Beretta fastest race lap
2010 GT Magnussen/O’Connell 12th Corvette C6.R Retired after 35 laps (accident)
  GT Beretta/Gavin 5th Corvette C6.R  
2011 GT Beretta/Milner 9th Corvette C6.R  
  GT Gavin/Magnussen 10th Corvette C6.R  
2012 GT Garcia/Magnussen 2nd Corvette C6.R  
  GT Gavin/Milner 3rd Corvette C6.R  
2013 GT Garcia/Magnussen 2nd Corvette C6.R  
  GT Gavin/Milner 6th Corvette C6.R