Corvette Racing Qualifies Fourth and Fifth for Mosport ALMS
Gavin and O’Connell Continue Top-Five Qualifying Streak with New GT2 Corvette C6.Rs
BOWMANVILLE, Ont. – Corvette Racing drivers Oliver Gavin and Johnny O’Connell qualified fourth and fifth respectively in the GT2 category for Sunday’s Grand Prix of Mosport, the eighth round of the American Le Mans Series. This is the third straight race that Corvette Racing has placed at least one car in the first five grid positions since the debut of the GT2 version of the Corvette C6.R.
Changing weather conditions at Mosport International Raceway brought rain, fog, clouds, and sun to the classic Canadian circuit. Today’s morning practice was run in the rain, giving the team an opportunity to test the new-generation Corvette race cars in wet conditions. When the 20-minute qualifying session began this afternoon, the track was dry and Gavin and O’Connell went out immediately to begin their qualifying runs. Gavin turned his fastest lap in the No. 4 Compuware Corvette C6.R at 1:17.959 (113.552 mph) on his fourth and final flying lap, while O’Connell posted his best time of 1:18.309 (113.044 mph) on his fifth lap in the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R. Dirk Mueller won the GT2 pole at 1.17.528 in Rahal-Letterman Racing’s BWM M3 as the BMW team qualified one-two for the second consecutive race.
“Qualifying was relatively straightforward,” said Gavin. “I didn’t have any traffic and managed to get straight out there. I passed the Flying Lizard Porsche on my out-lap, and from then on I was just trying to work with the car.
“We made some adjustments just before the start of the qualifying session and it was better, but it still had a bit of understeer so I didn’t really maximize the potential of the car in the first two turns,” Gavin explained. “Perhaps there were a couple of more tenths in the car and in me, but we’re still working hard to develop this new Corvette C6.R, and we’re up against some very strong competition.”
O’Connell will become the first driver to start 100 ALMS races when the green flag flies tomorrow. “It’s a cool milestone, and it means I’m halfway to 200!” O’Connell quipped. “I’m proud that most of those starts came with Corvette Racing. Tomorrow will be a fun day.”
“I’d certainly like to be starting closer to the front, but considering that this is our first time at Mosport with these new Corvette race cars, I think everyone is pleased,” O’Connell continued. “We’ve been this side of oversteer and that side of understeer, so we’re still not quite where we want to be. But I’ve been here so many times when I hated my car after qualifying and then had an awesome race car, so a thousand things can still change.”
The Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport at Mosport International Raceway in Bowmanville, Ont., is scheduled to start at 3:05 p.m. EDT on Sunday, August 30. SPEED will televise the two-hour, 45-minute race live at 3 p.m. EDT.
Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport GT2 Qualifying:
1. Mueller/Milner, BMW E92 M3, 1:17.528/114.183
2. Hand/Auberlen, BMW E92 M3, 1:17.657/113.994
3. Henzler/Werner, Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 1:17.788/113.802
4. Gavin/Beretta, Chevrolet Corvette C6.R, 1:17.959/113.552
5. O’Connell/Magnussen, Chevrolet Corvette C6.R, 1:18.309/113.044
6. Bergmeister/Long, Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 1:18.361/112.969
7. Farnbacher/James, Panoz Esperante GTLM, 1:18.778/112.371
8. Robertson/Robertson/Murry, Ford GT MK 7, 1;19.208/111.761
9. Law/van Overbeek, Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 1:19.475/111.386
10. Feinberg/Hall, Dodge Viper, 1:19.746/ 111.007
11. Melo/Kaffer, Ferrari 430 GT, no time
Release Date: August 28, 2009