Corvette Racing at Lime Rock: Second Place for Garcia, Magnussen
Hard-charging effort pays off with another podium finish
LAKEVILLE, Conn. – Corvette Racing’s Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen stood on the podium at Lime Rock Park for the second straight season with a runner-up finish Saturday in the American Le Mans Northeast Grand Prix. The No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R ran a nearly flawless race to lead Corvette Racing’s effort in the fourth round of the American Le Mans Series.
The result, which played out for a live television audience on ESPN2, moved Garcia and Magnussen from fifth in the ALMS’ GT driver’s championship into a provisional three-way tie for second.
Tommy Milner and Oliver Gavin finished sixth in a trying race. The defending ALMS GT champions stand third in the provisional standings. Corvette Racing is tied for first in the team standings, and Chevrolet continues to lead the manufacturer’s championship.
Magnussen drove his entire stint in the car under green flag conditions on the crowded and steamy Lime Rock circuit. Starting from third, he pitted just over an hour into the race to hand over to Garcia. The hard-charging Spaniard chased down the first-place BMW and clicked off faster laps than the race leader before a late-race caution period halted his charge.
Misfortune struck Milner early as the driver’s side mirror broke after contact with a Ferrari early. He fell to 11th in class but worked his way up to seventh by the first pit stop. Gavin entered the race in fifth but the team was assessed a stop-and-go penalty when the Corvette left the pitlane with a cable still attached. Gavin also sustained minor damage when a prototype attempting to overtake him instead made contact.
“Today we saw both sides of racing at Lime Rock Park,” said Corvette Racing Program Manager Doug Fehan. “It provided great entertainment for the fans with Jan and Antonio giving it their all and earning a well-deserved, runner-up finish. On the other end of the spectrum, I know Tommy, Oliver and the No. 4 crew would have liked to be part of the fight at the end. We head next to Canadian Tire Motorsport Park – a track that should favor our Corvettes and keep us in the GT championship hunt.”
Next up for Corvette Racing is the Grand Prix of Mosport on Sunday, July 21 from Canadian Tire Motorsport Park in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada. It is the fifth round of this year’s ALMS championship.
ANTONIO GARCIA, NO. 3 COMPUWARE CORVETTE C6.R
“Corvette Racing again did an awesome job. It was the second race in row, plus Le Mans, where we gave 110 percent. We made very good calls and very good pit stops. I think we forced the BMW to take two tires at the end. I don’t think they believed they could stay ahead of us. They took that gamble. I don’t know how much it helped them to take that last yellow; maybe it cooled down everything. At that point, you don’t really know their strategy. I was saving tires and don’t know if they were. Looking at the last four laps how much they were suffering, I don’t know in a full green race what would have happened. I knew the race would come down to tires. We managed things as best we could. We had a very strong car, very good strategy and very good points for the championship.”
JAN MAGNUSSEN, NO. 3 COMPUWARE CORVETTE C6.R
“It surprised me that I did my whole stint under green. It’s not like anyone was falling off but they managed to get back on so as to not cause a safety car. I don’t know if people were getting too hot but the driving standards were quite bad. The gap (from Garcia to the leader) was closed up at the end and we wanted Antonio to have as much time as he needed to see if he could do anything about the BMW. Whether it was six or eight minutes, it probably wouldn’t have made that much of a difference. It looked like Antonio had the car at the end. Had we been right with the BMW, maybe we could have done something. Second is probably the best result we were going to have, so I’m very happy.”
OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 4 COMPUWARE CORVETTE C6.R
“To say that this was a frustrating day would be an understatement. The race didn’t start well for us and never got better. The contact Tommy suffered put us behind early, and we found out again that it is near impossible to recover. The penalty was unfortunate and clearly didn’t help matters. Traffic was more of an issue than ever before but it’s a by-product of the circuit layout. Great result for Jan and Antonio; Tommy and I are eager for similar results again.”
TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 COMPUWARE CORVETTE C6.R
“We got completely hosed at the start by a competitor who decided to drive into me for the entire length of the braking zone in Turn 1, which knocked the mirror off. I checked out after that and had a nice little race going on before we had to pit to replace the mirror. The guys did an awesome job changing it out. Then on our pit stop, we just didn’t execute and got a penalty for that to put us back again. Traffic was just awful. It made everyone frustrated. You had to drive around in many cases at half your ability. It’s been a frustrating few days and months but we will learn from this and go to Canada with even more determination and desire. We’ll have to make up for these bad couple of races with a win. That’s how it has to be.”
Grand Prix of Mosport (all times ET)
- GT Qualifying: 3:50 p.m., Saturday, July 20
- Race: Noon, Sunday July 21
Canadian Tire Motorsport Park: Watch It!
Saturday, July 20-Sunday, July 21 (all times ET)
- Qualifying: 3:20 p.m., Saturday, July 20 (ESPN3)
- Race (TV): Live – 1 p.m., Sunday, July 21 (ESPN2)
- Web: Live – 11:45 a.m., Sunday, July 21 (ESPN3)
Release Date: July 6, 2013