CORVETTE RACING AT ROAD AMERICA: Building Momentum

Aug 03 2021 Randall Shinn 2021, News, Road America Comments Off on CORVETTE RACING AT ROAD AMERICA: Building Momentum

CORVETTE RACING AT ROAD AMERICA: Building Momentum

  • Program looking for fifth victory of 2021 IMSA season
  • Team’s last race before return to 24 Hours of Le Mans
  • Road America served as important venue for C8.R and Le Mans development

DETROIT (Aug. 3, 2021) – Corvette Racing is back at its spiritual home this weekend as it enters the second half of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Historic and picturesque Road America is set to play host to Corvette Racing for the 20th time with the program searching for its ninth victory at the 4.048-mile, 14-turn road course.

Both of the team’s mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette C8.Rs will be in action for the two-hour, 40-minute race. Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor return as defending GT Le Mans (GTLM) race-winners in the No. 3 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Corvette C8.R. They are on a three-race winning streak and won last year’s GTLM Drivers Championship.

The first-year pairing of Tommy Milner and Nick Tandy reeled off consecutive runner-up finishes at Watkins Glen and Lime Rock Park, and they scored a victory in a non-points race at Detroit to start Corvette Racing’s summer swing.

Continuing that team momentum is as important as ever. Directly after Road America, Corvette Racing departs for France and its return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans. As is tradition, the team in May used Road America – with its long straights and sections of fast, flowing corners – to test and develop the Corvette C8.R’s low-downforce setup and aerodynamic package.

Road America also was the site of the first on-track test for the C8.R in 2018, another example of how Chevrolet continues to use the track to improve the Corvette brand… a practice that dates back more than 60 years.

Chevrolet on Display at Road America
Chevrolet’s ties with Road America will be evident all over the circuit, including the famed Corvette Bridge at Turn Six and the immersive Chevrolet Motorsports Display that will be open to fans throughout the weekend. Located at the top of the Midway near the Victory Podium, the Chevrolet Motorsports Display will be full of Chevrolet vehicles that spectators can learn more about during a busy event.

The Chevrolet Motorsports Display opens at 9 a.m. Friday plus 8:30 a.m. Saturday and Sunday. Numerous Chevrolet vehicles and other highlights include:

• A Corvette Racing C8.R showcar
• A 2022 Corvette Stingray IMSA GTLM Championship Edition coupe
• Additional Chevrolet products such as the Camaro Coupe 2SS, Blazer RS, Silverado Trail Boss, and Tahoe RST
• A special display with various Corvette Racing artifacts
• An opportunity to receive a Corvette T-shirt

In addition, the Chevrolet Stingray coupe will serve as Official Pace Vehicle for the Road America event’s premier races, including the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship and Michelin Pilot Challenge.

Corvette Racing will contest the IMSA SportsCar Weekend on Aug. 6-8 from Road America in Elkhart Lake, Wis. Same-day coverage on NBCSN starts at 8 p.m. ET with live streaming coverage on TrackPass and NBC Sports Gold at 2:35 p.m. ET. Live audio coverage from IMSA Radio will be available on IMSA.com.

ANTONIO GARCIA, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R: “It’s good to have three weekends in a row ahead of Le Mans. Road America is good preparation for us to practice and compete, especially one week ahead of the Test Day. It will bring everyone up to speed and to be at 100 percent. It will be challenging for the team – being on one side of the world in a very competitive race and then fly halfway across the world to the most challenging race will do. Road America is the closest you can get to the speeds will run at Le Mans. That will be very helpful.”

JORDAN TAYLOR, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R: “Last year was an unexpected win. We weren’t in a great position but the way the race played out and the strategy calls we made were big. Antonio basically had to survive the last couple of laps in the rain to bring it home for the win. It was a huge day for the team with a 1-2 finish and for the 3 car in the championship. Since then, we’ve had a couple of tests there so we’ve learned some things to be more competitive when we do go back. Having that win last year really gave us some confidence.”

TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R: “Road America will be a more important race than usual. It’s a place we typically go to for testing at Le Mans. We won’t run the cars there this week in the same test spec, but it will be our last real-world test of all our processes ahead of the Test Day and Le Mans itself. I imagine it will be a little bit more ramped up all weekend as we focus on that race, but also having an eye toward going to France a few days later. There are some challenges with that with the team having already sent some equipment and spares over. I don’t see that being a problem, but I’m sure there could be some heartburn for some of the guys if there are issues! We approach each race as its own isolated event but we have to look at the big picture, too. This will be a big weekend for sure.”

NICK TANDY, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R: “The track at Road America is fantastic, the area is fantastic and the history of the circuit is phenomenal. There is some great stuff at Road America but there also are places where it’s a straight, 90-degree corner, straight and 90-degree corner. Having said that, it is one of those places where it’s so incredibly fast with no room for error in many places. Because of that, it’s an awesome lap when you have a car on the limit even if you are on your own. Some tracks when you are on your own, it’s not much fun and needs that racing aspect. A quick lap at Road America is different and a lot of fun.”

2021 WeatherTech SportsCar Championship – GTLM (After Five of 10 Events)
Driver Standings
1. Antonio Garcia/Jordan Taylor – 1,852
2. Tommy Milner/Nick Tandy – 1,661

3. Cooper MacNeil – 1,604
4. Augusto Farfus/Jesse Krohn/John Edwards – 1001
5. Mathieu Jaminet – 994

Team Standings
1. No. 3 Corvette Racing – 1,852
2. No. 4 Corvette Racing – 1,661

3. No. 79 WeatherTech Racing – 1,604
4. No. 24 BMW Team RLL – 1,001
5. No. 25 BMW Team RLL – 966

Manufacturer Standings
1. Chevrolet – 1,875

2. Porsche – 1,726
3. BMW – 1,052
4. Ferrari – 330

CORVETTE RACING AT ROAD AMERICA: By the Numbers
1: As in one team, one manufacturer and one model of car for 23 years: Corvette Racing, Chevrolet and the Chevrolet Corvette.
4: Generations of Corvette Racing entries at Road America since 2002 – Corvette C5-R (2002-2004), Corvette C6.R (2005-13), Corvette C7.R (2016-19) and Corvette C8.R (2020). Last year’s event was the first Road America race appearance for the mid-engine racing Corvette.
4: Number of cars Tommy Milner passed in the final 15 minutes of the 2016 Road America race. He and Oliver Gavin went on to win in class and capture the GTLM Drivers Championship.
• 8: Number of victories at Road America for Corvette Racing, the most of any entrant in IMSA.
8: Pole positions at Road America for Corvette Racing by four different drivers.
• 10: Number of drivers who have won races at Road America for Corvette Racing – Gavin (four); Olivier Beretta (three); Johnny O’Connell (two); and Kelly Collins, Ron Fellows, Antonio Garcia, Jan Magnussen, Milner, Andy Pilgrim and Jordan Taylor (one each).
11: Fastest race laps for Corvette Racing drivers at Road America. That includes one each for Milner (2019) and Garcia (2020).
13: Manufacturer Championships for Chevrolet and Corvette Racing since 2001.
20: Number of Road America events for Corvette Racing counting this year’s IMSA race.
25: Tracks at which Corvette Racing has won races – Baltimore, Charlotte Motor Speedway, COTA, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park/Mosport, Daytona, Detroit, Houston, Laguna Seca, Le Mans, Lime Rock, Long Beach, Miami, Mid-Ohio, Portland, Road America, Road Atlanta, Sebring, Sonoma, St. Petersburg, Texas, Trois Rivieres, Utah, VIR, Washington DC and Watkins Glen.
26: Number of GT Le Mans wins in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship for Corvette Racing since the start of 2014.
31: Number of drivers for Corvette Racing since 1999.
117: Victories worldwide for Corvette Racing – 109 in North America and eight at Le Mans.
244: Event starts by Corvette Racing since 1999.
• 11,561.14: Number of racing miles completed by Corvette Racing in its 19 previous trips to Road America. That represents 2,848 laps or more than 98 trips across Lake Michigan.
324,328.95: Total number of racing miles completed by Corvette Racing since its inception. To put that in perspective Apollo 13 – the longest manned spaceflight in history – covered “just” 248,655 miles. Simply put, the program has raced to the moon and back… and then some.

Corvette Racing at Road America (wins in bold)
2002
No. 3 Corvette C5-R: Ron Fellows/Johnny O’Connell/Oliver Gavin – 2nd in GTS (Fellows pole; Gavin fastest race lap)
No. 4 Corvette C5-R: Andy Pilgrim/Kelly Collins – 1st in GTS

2003
No. 3 Corvette C5-R: Ron Fellows/Johnny O’Connell – 2nd in GTS
No. 4 Corvette C5-R: Oliver Gavin/Kelly Collins – 5th in GTS (Gavin pole, fastest race lap)

2004
No. 3 Corvette C5-R: Ron Fellows/Johnny O’Connell – 2nd in GTS
No. 4 Corvette C5-R: Olivier Beretta/Oliver Gavin – 1st in GTS (Beretta pole, fastest race lap)

2005
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Ron Fellows/Johnny O’Connell – 2nd in GT1
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Oliver Gavin – 1st in GT1 (Gavin pole, Beretta fastest race lap)

2006
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Ron Fellows/Johnny O’Connell – 1st in GT1
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Oliver Gavin – 2nd in GT1 (Gavin fastest race lap)

2007
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Johnny O’Connell – 2nd in GT1 (Magnussen pole, fastest race lap)
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Oliver Gavin – 1st in GT1

2008
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Johnny O’Connell/Jan Magnussen – 1st in GT1
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Oliver Gavin – 3rd in GT1 (Gavin pole, fastest race lap)

2009
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Johnny O’Connell – 3rd in GT2
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Oliver Gavin – 6th in GT2

2010
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Johnny O’Connell – 4th in GT2
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Jan Magnussen – 3rd in GT2 (Gavin pole, fastest race lap)

2011
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Tommy Milner – 14th in GT
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Jan Magnussen – 5th in GT

2012
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 6th in GT
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 4th in GT

2013
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 2nd in GT
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 3rd in GT

2014
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 6th in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 7th in GTLM

2015
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 4th in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 7th in GTLM

2016
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 6th in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 1st in GTLM (5th to 1st in final 15 minutes)

2017
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 4th in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 5th in GTLM

2018
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 3rd in GTLM (Garcia fastest race lap)
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 2nd in GTLM

2019
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 4th in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 6th in GTLM (Gavin pole, Milner fastest race lap)

2020
No. 3 Corvette C8.R: Antonio Garcia/Jordan Taylor – 1st in GTLM (Garcia fastest race lap)
No. 4 Corvette C8.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 2nd in GTLM