CORVETTE RACING, CORVETTE DP AT LONG BEACH: Thrilling Win for Wayne Taylor Racing
Magnussen, Garcia back on GTLM podium at Long Beach with third-place finish
- Second straight win for Corvette DP in TUDOR Championship
- Westbrook, Valiante third overall in VisitFlorida.com Corvette DP
- Chevrolet leads in Prototype, GTLM Manufacturer points after three rounds
LONG BEACH – It was a good day Saturday at Long Beach for Chevrolet and the Corvette Racing programs. Ricky Taylor and Jordan Taylor were overall winners in the Tequila Patrón Sports Car Showcase in the third round of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.
Wayne Taylor Racing’s No. 10 Konica Minolta Corvette Daytona Prototype won for the first time this season and moved Chevrolet into the lead of the TUDOR Championship’s Prototype Engine Manufacturer standings.
“The Wayne Taylor Racing team had a strong performance at Long Beach,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. Vice President – Truck Strategy, Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “Ricky Taylor clinched the pole on Friday with a quick lap after cooling his tires. Then Jordan, Ricky and the No. 10 Corvette DP crew combined two great stints and quick pit stops to win the race.”
Campbell added: “The Corvette Corral at Long Beach was full. It’s great to see so many Corvette owners at the race track. We appreciate their support of Corvette Racing.”
It was a solid points day in both classes for Chevy and Corvette. Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen raced their way to a third-place GT Le Mans (GTLM) finish in Corvette Racing’s No. 3 Chevrolet Corvette C7.R. The 2014 Long Beach class winners added Saturday’s podium result to their victories at Daytona and Sebring to open the season.
Ricky Taylor started from pole position and led the first 37 laps before he pitted 48 minutes in for the team’s only stop. Jordan Taylor rejoined in fifth but put in two strong laps while the rest of the Prototype field cycled through their stops to move up to second place. Another lap later, Taylor dove to the inside of Joey Hand’s prototype – on its second lap out of the pitlane – and made the move stick.
Taylor used late-race GTLM traffic to build a comfortable gap in the closing moments and won by 3.3 seconds. It was the first victory for the Konica Minolta Corvette DP since Petit Le Mans to close the 2014 season.
VisitFlorida.com Racing gave Team Chevy two spots on the overall podium with a third-place finish for Michael Valiante and Richard Westbrook in their No. 90 Corvette DP. It marked the pairing’s third consecutive podium on the season.
Garcia and Magnussen maintained the GTLM championship lead with their showing Saturday. Magnussen held steady in fourth during his stint, and a quick stop plus driver change to Garcia at the 44-minute mark allowed the Corvette C7.R to leapfrog the third-place car. Garcia dropped back to fourth in the first part of his stint before taking advantage of a miscue by the second-place car to move into podium position.
Oliver Gavin and Tommy Milner finished seventh in GTLM with the No. 4 Chevrolet Corvette C7.R. An opening-lap incident with a fellow GTLM competitor shuffled Gavin back from fifth to eighth at the start. An early stop for a punctured tire didn’t help matters for the 2012 Long Beach GT class winners.
Corvette Racing and the Corvette Daytona Prototypes move on to Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca for the Continental Tire Monterey Grand Prix. The fourth round of the TUDOR Championship is scheduled for 4:05 p.m. ET on Sunday, May 3.
CORVETTE DP QUOTES
RICKY TAYLOR, WAYNE TAYLOR RACING NO. 10 KONICA MINOLTA CORVETTE DP – PROTOTYPE RACE WINNER: “Obviously being on pole is nice. You get to control the start a little bit. Scott (Pruett) did a really good job at the start and I had to fight for it at Turn 1. Fortunately I knew our car was good on the brakes and good on cold tires as well. I had some confidence going into the first turn. After that I settled in and did my best to save the car to get it over to Jordan in one piece. At the beginning it seemed like a reasonable task but as it went on, the 01 was putting more pressure on and I was having to push harder and harder as the tires wore. It felt like our car was really good. It’s really special to come away with this result. It’s our one-year anniversary in our relationship with Konica Minolta. It’s always sweet after Sebring. Brembo has gone back and solved all our brake issues. Hats off to all the guys on our team for a great stop and to our partners for doing everything they do.”
JORDAN TAYLOR, WAYNE TAYLOR RACING NO. 10 KONICA MINOLTA CORVETTE DP – PROTOTYPE RACE WINNER: “When I got in the car, I knew (the No. 01) had stayed out because I didn’t see them in the pit lane, so I knew they would have at least one lap on hot tires and we’d have a lap on cold tires and they could maybe jump us. I pushed hard on the two out-laps and actually tagged the wall on one of them. I actually saw on the big screen TV on the front stretch that (Joey Hand) was just leaving the pit exit. I was behind a Porsche, and thankfully he braked early into the first turn. If I hadn’t gotten by him, I wouldn’t have been close enough. I knew having gone around on cold tires how tough it was, but I was shocked at how quick he was. I got a good run out of the hairpin, and I knew we were strong under braking. I knew we’d probably have one shot at it, so I went for it. It was a pretty late move but fortunately it stuck. It was tough being the leader. I could see how close he was every lap. It was a tenth here and a tenth there. Thankfully with a couple laps to go we had a little bit of separation with some GT cars which gave me a pretty good gap to the finish.”
MICHAEL VALIANTE, VISITFLORIDA.COM RACING NO. 90 CORVETTE DP – THIRD PLACE IN PROTOTYPE: “It’s great to have another podium. We started fourth, and it was great to move up to third. We still have some work to do. We have to find some pace to challenge for the championship. It’s going to be tough as the year goes on.”
RICHARD WESTBROOK, VISITFLORIDA.COM RACING NO. 90 CORVETTE DP – THIRD PLACE IN PROTOTYPE: “I think we probably deserved third. We probably didn’t deserve to be off the podium but didn’t deserve to be any higher. We have a two-day test now where we can go away and pick up a little more pace. It’s encouraging. We’re able to fight at the front. We just need that little bit extra. Michael did a great first stint and gave me the car in a nice, easy position.”
DANE CAMERON, ACTION EXPRESS RACING NO. 31 WHELEN ENGINEERING/TEAM FOX CORVETTE DP – FOURTH PLACE IN PROTOTYPE: “Our Whelen Corvette DP was really, really good. It’s kind of nice to be frustrated with fourth. Overall, it was a pretty clean run. We just didn’t quite have the track position, and we needed a yellow to close up the gap to fight with the guys in the top-three. Overall, it was a strong day. Everything has come together now. Eric did a great job in his stint. We have all the pieces we need to win and challenge for wins. I think we definitely had the best car today. We had a car capable of being in the top-three at Sebring. We’re in the game, and I think we’re ready to win one of these things now.”
JOAO BARBOSA, ACTION EXPRESS RACING NO. 5 MUSTANG SAMPLING CORVETTE DP – FIFTH PLACE IN PROTOTYPE: “It was a tough race for our car. We had good position on the track in fourth place, and I went to push in order to get close to the third-place car. Unfortunately I made a little mistake and hit the wall in Turn 9. The car wasn’t great after that but we still finished the race and brought home points that are very important in the long run. Sometimes you have good days and sometimes you have bad days. This wasn’t one of our best but there is still a long way to go to the end of the championship. We are still leading, which is important.”
CORVETTE RACING QUOTES
ANTONIO GARCIA, CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – THIRD PLACE IN GTLM: “We had a very clean run. The pace we showed is what we had. Jan had on to the lead cars in the initial 40 minutes. I could see at the end of his stint he was starting to struggle, and I knew I had to go 20 minutes longer in my stint. After a great pit stop by the Corvette Racing crew – the driver change and the service went really smooth – I found myself in third position and could challenge the second-place BMW. For about 10 laps I had the pace but I think I probably killed my tires trying to overtake him. I suffered with understeer and decided there was still a long way to go and I couldn’t really follow them. From that point on, we had to think about the championship, too. Coming out with third-place is good for Chevrolet and Corvette Racing in the championship. We just need to carry on and keep that momentum that we have.”
JAN MAGNUSSEN, CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – THIRD PLACE IN GTLM: “For the pace we had today, a podium is absolutely a fantastic result. It’s good points. We didn’t really have enough to go for a win. To come through third today though is a great finish for Chevrolet and the team for the championship. I was quite happy with the car. It got pretty slippery in my stint. Maybe we were running a little higher tire pressures. It was pretty hard to hold off the Porsche. He took four new tires for the race… took a penalty for it but still caught me up and gave me a hard time. I didn’t really have the speed to stay with the BMWs and Ferrari.”
OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 4 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – SEVENTH PLACE IN GTLM: “I was on the inside and we all ran out of room. Our race was shaped by the contact with the Porsche and being turned around. It was very disappointing. Once again we had a good car and a very fast car. It’s just immensely frustrating again. But we will move on to Laguna Seca and try to gain some positive momentum.”
TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – SEVENTH PLACE IN GTLM: “This is one of those races where you need to race hard right from the start, and we did that although maybe a little too hard, unfortunately. That’s just racing at Long Beach. You have to race hard here. You dont want to make contact. But the car had just superficial damage. We can change that, move on to Laguna Seca and get a better result there.”
Release Date: April 19, 2015