Corvette Racing Contends with Heat and Traffic in Qualifying at Fast Canadian Circuit
BOWMANVILLE, Ontario, Canada, July 23, 2011 – In 90-degree heat on a blistering 114-degree track, Corvette Racing qualified sixth and eighth for Sunday’s Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport. The fourth round of the American Le Mans Series will see the No. 4 Compuware Corvette C6.R driven by Jan Magnussen and Oliver Gavin start sixth in the hotly contested GT class. The No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R of Olivier Beretta and Tommy Milner will grid eighth.
The heat was on at Mosport, with summertime temperatures that far exceeded the cool weather that traditionally prevailed on the event’s previous Labor Day date. With Magnussen at the wheel, the No. 4 Corvette C6.R turned its quickest time on its fifth lap at 1:17.580 (114.107 mph), while Beretta clocked his best lap (1:17.997/113.497 mph) on his fourth circuit. Dirk Mueller put the No. 56 BMW M3 GT on the Mosport pole with the session’s fastest lap at 1:17.083 (114.842 mph).
“It was a really good qualifying lap, no traffic and as mistake-free as you can make one,” said Magnussen. “That was absolutely as fast as I could go today. We don’t have the same balance in the car as we did last year at Mosport, and the difference is it was cooler. Maybe the cooler weather that’s predicted for tomorrow will help us, but usually it helps everybody.
“It’s very, very close, less than a tenth of a second between each car, but it’s not where we want to be and we have our work cut out,” Magnussen said. “We’ll have to race hard and smart tomorrow. It shows there are some adjustments that need to be made to the performance of the various cars, if only small adjustments.”
Beretta was pleased with the improvement in the No. 3 Corvette C6.R following the final practice session. “The performance in qualifying was better, no question, and the team did a good job,” Beretta said. “The problem on my lap was traffic. I did my qualifying time, and then I had traffic on the next three laps. Sure, I could have been quicker, but it looks like some of the other cars are definitely quicker than us – but it’s a long race!”
Balance of performance adjustments announced after the Lime Rock race two weeks ago will be implemented in the upcoming round at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course.
“It was a difficult day at a very fast race track,” said Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan. “You look at the top six cars and they’re within a half a second – almost nothing. I think that promises an extremely close competition tomorrow. As we move on to Mid-Ohio, the performance balancing rules will take effect and we’ll see even closer competition.”
The Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport is scheduled to start at 3:05 p.m. ET on Sunday, July 24. Live video coverage is available on ESPN3.com in the US and americanlemans.com for international users, plus live coverage on Rogers Sportsnet in Canada. ESPN2 will televise the race on July 24 at 10 p.m. ET.
Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport GT Qualifying (Top 10):
- 56 Mueller/Hand, BMW M3 GT, 1:17.083
- 55 Auberlen/Werner, BMW M3 GT, 1:17.142
- 45 Bergmeister/Long, Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 1:17.312
- 01 Sharp/van Overbeek, Ferrari F458 Italia, 1:17.511
- 62 Melo/Vilander, Ferrari F458 Italia, 1:17.543
- 4 Gavin/Magnussen, Corvette C6.R, 1:17.580
- 17 Henzler/Sellers, Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 1:17.964
- 3 Beretta/Milner, Corvette C6.R, 1:17.997
- 04 Murry/Lazzaro, Doran Ford GT, 1:18.847
- 98 Jones/Moran, Jaguar RSR, 1:19.302
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