CORVETTE RACING AT ROAD ATLANTA: First-Half Driver Quotes

Oct 02 2016 Randall Shinn 2016, News, Road Atlanta Comments Off on CORVETTE RACING AT ROAD ATLANTA: First-Half Driver Quotes

CORVETTE RACING AT ROAD ATLANTA: First-Half Driver Quotes

MSA – WEATHERTECH SPORTSCAR CHAMPIONSHIP
PETIT LE MANS PRESENTED BY HARRAH’S CHEROKEE CASINO RESORT
ROAD ATLANTA
CORVETTE DRIVER IN-RACE UPDATES
OCT. 1, 2016

OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R: "So far, so good. We’ve been making steps with this Corvette and we’ve been moving forward. When Tommy (Milner) was in the car, he was gaining places, he was moving up the order, and I was doing the same. We started off second after that last restart because the guys did a great job and got us out ahead of the No. 66 and then I got past the No. 62 going into Turn One on that restart. He got bumped a little bit by a PC car, but then we had pace. Our engineer, Chuck Houghton, made a good call there on the tires. We switched those up and the car was really switched-on and that was fantastic. I could drive it hard and aggressive. We managed to pull away from the Ferrari, and I could pick my points in the traffic.

"But the track is breaking up in Turn Three and that was getting worse and worse during my stint. I know the guys are looking at it. This caution has allowed us to get Marcel (Fässler) in the car. Marcel is back with us which is great. He was our lucky charm in Daytona and Sebring. He is such a great guy to have with us. Huge experience; three Le Mans wins. The guy knows endurance racing inside out. So we’ll just plug him in and see how he goes the next two hours. Then Tommy will get back in, and then I will get back in and we will see how it goes.

"Over the years this track has been good to me. It has been good to the No. 4 Corvette. It is a good place for us to finish the championship. We always seem to go well here. We test well here. We had a good test here about three to four weeks ago. It has been a bit of the battle to get the car right here with the different kinds of rubber here. Fundamentally, that’s starting to come to us now. We have the right tire on the car, and we are moving forward. I feel like we can take anyone on, and be the best. It has an amazing way to finish off the year. To win three of the four big enduros on the year in this championship would be amazing. To win the triple crown of Daytona, Sebring and Petit Le Mans would be very special. But there are going to be plenty more bumps in the road. Plenty more things that can happen.

"We just have to execute. Ben Johnson our team manager, told us all in the meeting before the start of the race that if we execute here, this race will come to us – just do our jobs, do them well and we will find the front or go toward the front. For us in the championship, this is what we want. We’ve managed to sew up the Manufacturer’s Championship for Chevrolet which is just amazing. Another year of doing that, it is fantastic. I’m just very proud to be a part of this amazing program. Fingers crossed that if we keep doing our jobs, we can get the Team championship and the Driver’s championship. It would be a year with a clean sweep."

JAN MAGNUSSEN, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R: "I took it very easy to begin with. I didn’t want to risk the car; I really wanted to find the balance and see where we were compared to everyone else. It wasn’t great at first. I was struggling with top speed, plus I had a little too much understeer. We made an adjustment to the car, which made it a lot better. It was very well-behaved and fast. I was able to charge. Things are quite good and I’m very happy. Calm and collected is the strategy for the next 20 hours, I think."

JORDAN TAYLOR, WAYNE TAYLOR RACING NO. 10 KONICA MINOLTA CORVETTE DP: "It’s been ok. Everyone has been struggling with the track. With the heating in the middle of the day, we kind of knew the track would start going away from us and we’d start sliding around. In my first stint, I thought we were really good on the tires, and we were all over the 5 car. I’m not sure if they were playing games but in the second stint they seemed stronger. I think maybe as it cools down that might work toward us some, kind of like how it did in 2014. We just need to stay in contention for the next few hours, wait for dusk and then we can attack from there."

RICKY TAYLOR, WAYNE TAYLOR RACING NO. 10 KONICA MINOLTA CORVETTE DP: "Our car a couple times this year has been really strong at the end of a (stint). Our guys worked on long runs and stints, and that seems to be a strong point for us. On the restarts I feel like some of the other cars can gap us but we can get that time back as the stint goes on.

"We’ve made a lot of improvements. We have a really good car on the long run. Traffic is just very difficult. It’s unpredictable what some of the drivers are going to do. Staying safe is going to be really important over the next couple hours, and hopefully tonight when it cools down the car keeps this balance.

"The car is good. Maybe we don’t have the outright pace on brand new tires, but over the long run our pace is very good. Hopefully we can eat into those gaps and overtake people over the course of the run."

(DRIVER TRANSPONDER): "We have a physiologist and he’s working on improving the driver. That’s the biggest variable in the whole car. If we can get the best out of us, that will save us to improve our car more and more down the road. It was really interesting with my core body temperature being 102. I’m looking forward to learning more about this. I took the patch off when I got out of the car, and I’ll put it back on when I get back in. I got weighed before I got in the car and weighed after I got out of the car; that’s probably drinking four pounds of water, too! Those are numbers that we had an idea about but it’s interesting to see it in real life."