CORVETTE RACING AT VIR: Ready for an Overall Fight

Aug 20 2019 Randall Shinn 2019, News, VIR Comments Off on CORVETTE RACING AT VIR: Ready for an Overall Fight

CORVETTE RACING AT VIR: Ready for an Overall Fight

Second GT-only weekend of IMSA WeatherTech season

  • Three races remain in GT Le Mans title chase
  • Garcia, Magnussen look for third VIR win in four years
  • Gavin, Milner winners of Corvette Racing’s first VIR event

DETROIT (August 20, 2019) – Corvette Racing gets its second shot at overall glory in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship this weekend with an annual visit to Virginia International Raceway. The Michelin GT Challenge at VIR is one of two GT-only weekends in the IMSA championship and is one Corvette Racing has captured twice.

The 3.27-mile, 17-turn road course is a favorite of all four Corvette Racing drivers, and it’s easy to see why. A successful weekend for the program will add to Corvette Racing’s tally of three victories and five podium finishes since 2012. In addition, Chevrolet is the most successful IMSA manufacturer at VIR in the field with seven total victories.

Each member of the Corvette quartet is a past race-winner. Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen were overall winners in 2016 and 2017 – their most recent victory – and finished second a year ago. Co-drivers in the No. 3 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Chevrolet Corvette C7.R, Garcia and Magnussen remain in contention for their third straight GT Le Mans (GTLM) title with three rounds remaining. They stand fourth in points and 19 out of first place.

The No. 4 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Corvette C7.R duo of Oliver Gavin and Virginia’s own Tommy Milner won on Corvette Racing’s VIR debut in 2012, a victory that netted them and Chevrolet the American Le Mans Series GT Championship. The Gavin/Milner pairing showed strong form in the most recent race at Road America with Gavin claiming the GTLM pole position.

The Michelin GT Challenge at VIR is August 23-25. Sunday’s two-hour, 40-minute race will air live on NBCSN and the NBC Sports App at 1:30 p.m. ET. Live audio coverage will be available on IMSA Radio, Sirius 138, XM 202 and SiriusXM Online 972.

ANTONIO GARCIA, NO. 3 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R: "VIR is one of our favorite tracks as a team. We’ve won quite a few times there and came up a little short last year. So Corvette Racing really likes the track, and Jan and I have had a lot of success. Traffic won’t be as much of an issue as at other venues with Prototype cars. There are sections at VIR – like the Esses – where if you get caught in traffic can play into the result. If you do it right, you can make up a lot of time. But if you get stuck behind slower cars, you’ll also lose a lot. So it’s important to be smart around there and avoid any contact. We always look forward to going back there. Hopefully we can win there again."

JAN MAGNUSSEN, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R: "VIR has been good to us. We need it to be good to us again. We really need a win for this season and the championship. There are some places where the result comes a little easier than at others, and for some reason VIR is that for us. A lap around there is super enjoyable and a big challenge. There are consequences if you mess up, but that doesn’t away from it being such a fantastic circuit. These are the kind I really enjoy. GTLM is so close that you have to go for whatever gap presents itself. For sure, you try to be safe and try not to damage the car so you have something to fight with at the end. But the level of competition is so high that you have to take every shot you can."

OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R: "VIR is fantastic and one of the best ones we go to. A GT-only race makes it more intense. It’s a track that’s technical, fast-paced and with a lot of grip. Strategy always plays a role… if you run long in a stint or short, what tire you run and the fuel loads. It’s an intense race that you can never take your eye off. The track is technical and really tough to get it right around a lap. When you do nail it, it’s terrific. It can be difficult to pass in spots around there, but that’s just how the racing goes at VIR. We’re hoping to be able to rekindle some of our past success and get that 100th IMSA win."

TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R: "It’s always a fun weekend at VIR for a couple reasons. First off, it’s close to home and I enjoy having family and friends at the track. The circuit is a great one, especially for sports cars. There are great places for overtaking throughout the lap, but a lot of those have a high level of risk. You have to quickly decide whether to chance an overtake or be patient and lose some time. That’s a great recipe for good sports car racing. Corvettes have been strong around VIR in the past and the expectation is to be again this year."

CORVETTE RACING AT VIRGINIA INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY: By the Numbers
• 1: As in one team, one manufacturer and one model of car for 20 years: Corvette Racing, Chevrolet and the Chevrolet Corvette.
• 2: Overall VIR race wins for Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen – 2016 and 2017
• 2: Generations of Corvette Racing entries at VIR since 2012 – Corvette C6.R (2012-2013) and Corvette C7.R (2014-current).
• 3: Class wins at VIR for Corvette Racing, tied for the most among IMSA entrants. Tommy Milner and Oliver Gavin won in ALMS GT in 2012, and Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen won overall in 2016 and 2017.
• 7: Number of VIR victories for Chevrolet since 2002 covering both ALMS and the Rolex Series.
• 8: As in Chevrolet’s small-block V8. More than 100 million units have been sold worldwide and is the most successful engine in American motorsports.
• 12: Manufacturer Championships for Chevrolet and Corvette Racing since 2001.
• 16: Number of GT Le Mans wins in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship for Corvette Racing since the start of 2014.
• 24: Tracks at which Corvette Racing has won races – Baltimore, 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.
• 28: Number of drivers for Corvette Racing since 1999.
• 107: Victories worldwide for Corvette Racing – 99 in North America and eight at Le Mans.
• 223: Event starts by Corvette Racing since 1999.
• 4,208.49: Number of racing miles completed by Corvette Racing in its six previous trips to Virginia International Raceway. That represents 1,111 laps or more than 16 trips from Tommy Milner’s home in Ashburn, Virginia to the track.
• 295,850.10: 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.

2019 WeatherTech SportsCar Championship – GTLM Standings (After Eight of 11 Events)
Driver Standings
1. Earl Bamber/Laurens Vanthoor – 248
2. Nick Tandy/Patrick Pilet – 234
3. Richard Westbrook/Ryan Briscoe – 230
4. Antonio Garcia/Jan Magnussen – 229
5. Dirk Mueller – 223
8. Oliver Gavin – 195
11. Tommy Milner – 147

Team Standings
1. No. 912 Porsche GT Team – 248
2. No. 911 Porsche GT Team – 234
3. No. 67 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing – 230
4. No. 3 Corvette Racing – 229
5. No. 66 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing – 223
8. No. 4 Corvette Racing – 195

Manufacturer Standings
1. Porsche – 269
2. Ford – 248
3. Chevrolet – 240
4. BMW – 237

Corvette Racing at Virginia International Raceway
2012
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 8th in GT (Garcia fastest race lap)
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 1st in GT (Clinched ALMS GT title)

2013
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 3rd in GT (Clinch GT team, manufacturer titles)
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 6th in GT

2014
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Antonio Garcia/Jordan Taylor – 7th in GTLM (Taylor replaced Magnussen – injury)
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 9th in GTLM

2015
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 6th in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 8th in GTLM

2016
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 1st in GTLM (Magnussen pole)
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 9th in GTLM (Gavin fastest race lap)

2017
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 1st in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 6th in GTLM

2018
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 2nd in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 6th in GTLM