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Corvette Racing

Magnussen Wins First Pole for new GT2 Corvette C6.R

Jan Magnussen won the the first pole in Corvette Racing’s GT2 era (soon to be just GT) Friday afternoon at Laguna Seca. Mags ran a fastest lap time of 1:23.053 to take the pole at the Monterey Sports Car Championships at Laguna Seca. Oliver Gavin and the #4 Corvette C6.R finished third behind the #62 Ferrari with a lap of 1:23.283.

With today’s effort, Mangussen wins his 10th career ALMS pole and his third straight at Laguna Seca (two in GT1 and one in GT2).

“The Michelins came in really quickly and I kept going faster and faster,” said Magnussen, “In practice I didn’t expect to be fighting for the pole, but we expected to be up near the front. It seemed at the end of every session, the Porsches or Ferrari would do a very fast lap and put us down the order a little bit. To be on pole is just fantastic.”

“The way that we set up the Corvette C6.R, it’s not a qualifying setup – it’s a race setup,” he said. “It’s made to go faster every lap. Obviously we cannot run this fast in the beginning of the race because we will have a lot more fuel, and we’ll expect the car to behave a little differently, but it should go faster and faster. We’ve had a history of doing that.”

Just as the cars got out on the track for qualifying, a race broke out between Oliver Gavin and the #87 Porsche. Gavin was able to get inside and then had clear road to begin his runs.

Gavin jumped from fifth to third on the qualifying list with his final effort.

“The car was going faster and faster as the tires were coming in,” Gavin said. “The car felt very good, but not absolutely perfect, with a touch of mid-corner understeer. Catching traffic on the final lap was a bit frustrating, but Jan had to pass him as well. You always want to be quick, and we’re in the hunt, but not on the pole. Well done to Jan, he did a great job.”

Corvette Racing closes out 2009 at the Monterey Sports Car Championships at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The four-hour race is scheduled to start at 2:45 PM PDT on Saturday, October 10. SPEED will broadcast the race tape-delayed on Sunday, October 11, at 2:30 p.m. EDT.



Related:
Corvette Racing Wraps Up GT2 Testing at Monterey’s Laguna Seca
Corvette Racing: 2009 Petit Le Mans Photo Gallery
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan on the Direct Injection Controversy
Corvette Racing: Ferrari and Porsche Complain to ACO

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Corvette Z06 C6.R Tribute

This Corvette Z06 was parked at the entrance of the Corvette Corral at last week’s Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta. I had asked around for the owner but we never did hook up so details on this conversion are light at best. But obviously, the owner is a huge Corvette racing fan and his Z06 nearly replicates the look of the GT1 Corvette C6.Rs.

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Corvette Z06 C6.R Tribute Corvette Z06 C6.R Tribute Corvette Z06 C6.R Tribute


Related:
Ultimate Tribute: SEMA Corvette Z06 C6.R Tribute

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Corvette Racing Wraps Up GT2 Testing at Monterey's Laguna Seca
Photo Credit: Richard Prince

This Saturday is the final race of the 2009 American Le Mans series and for Corvette Racing, it will be the last opportunity for testing and evaluating the new GT2 Corvettes during actual combat conditions. The factory-backed Corvettes have used the final five races to test the GT2 C6.R Corvettes ahead of a full-bore assault on the unified GT Championship in 2010.

By all accounts the testing of the GT2 Corvettes has been successful. In the four races run by the new Corvette C6.Rs, the team finished first at Mosport, second at Mid-Ohio, third at Road America and ran much of the rain-soaked race at Petit Le Mans first and second before dropping to 4th when the race was called.

“By any standard, it’s clear that Corvette Racing’s GT2 development plan has been successful,” said Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan. “It’s not only our results on the race track – although that is certainly important – but the fact that at each successive event we’ve learned more about the GT2 Corvette C6.R race cars. They have been more consistent, quicker, and more competitive. That is exactly what we would have expected if we’d conducted a test program in private.”

Despite the fact that the team looks at this weekend’s race at Monterey’s Laguna Seca as another test session, it’s an important test as the raceway doesn’t host private track testing. So the team’s only chance to acquire data on how the GT2 Corvettes handle the sandy track conditions comes Saturday.

“Laguna Seca is something of a mystery for us, as it is for many teams,” Fehan explained. “The track surface can vary greatly from day to day, so there is always a question of grip. We’ve engineered more mechanical grip into the GT2 Corvette than in any previous Corvette race car, so we’re very eager to see whether that proves to be an advantage. This race will be our only opportunity to test at Laguna Seca before we return next year in earnest, so it is important to gather as much data as possible.”

Team manager Gary Pratt sees tires as a key to success at Laguna Seca. “Laguna has traditionally been a low-grip track, and I expect it to be the same this year,” he said. “The lack of grip there was a problem for us until we partnered with Michelin. Michelin has always brought tires that suit the track, and that could be an advantage for us in a four-hour race. Most of the corners are medium-speed, with hard braking in Turn 11 before the pit straight. Consequently Laguna Seca is a momentum track where the drivers need to carry their speed through the corners. I think the GT2 Corvettes will do that very well.

“We’ve been able to find a good balance with the GT2 Corvette’s aero package so it is not as ‘edgy’ as the GT1 car,” Pratt continued. “This makes the GT2 Corvette more predictable and the drivers more confident in traffic. We’ve always been a little anxious about running in wet conditions, but the GT2 Corvette has proven to be very good in the rain with its wide track and good balance. The drivers like it, and I’m not so hesitant about practicing on a wet track.”

Corvette Racing closes out 2009 at the Monterey Sports Car Championships at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in Monterey, California. The four-hour race is scheduled to start at 2:45 PM PDT on Saturday, October 10. SPEED will broadcast the race tape-delayed on Sunday, October 11, at 2:30 p.m. EDT.



Related:
Corvette Racing: 2009 Petit Le Mans Photo Gallery
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan on the Direct Injection Controversy
Corvette Racing: Ferrari and Porsche Complain to ACO

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Privateer Corvette ZR1 Race Car Wrecks at Watkins Glen

by Keith Cornett on October 7, 2009

Corvette ZR1 Race Car Wrecks at Watkins Glen

With an MSRP north of $105,000, the Chevy Corvette ZR1 is certainly not the cheapest car to take to the track. So when we see the after-effects of a privateer racer that put his Corvette ZR1 race car into a wall, we naturally cringe. Not only do we morn the death of a great sports car, but we feel for the driver who put a lot of time and money into creating a competitive race car. But then again, that racing!

This privateer Corvette ZR1 race car met its fate at a recent outing at Watkins Glen. The 638-hp Corvette was painted in a B-pillar Jake livery that very much resembles the GT1 Corvettes in their special Jake Monterey livery in 2007. The Corvette was reportedly driven by Gary Soebelski and this was his first competitive race since receiving his competition license. The Corvette took significant front-end damage during the race at turns 8 and 9 (heel of the boot). Apparently he is all right as the word on the street is Soebelski is already looking for another ZR1 to replace this one.

Update:
Corvette ZR1 Crash Video (happens at the 8:45 mark)

Corvette ZR1 Race Car Wrecks at Watkins Glen Corvette ZR1 Race Car Wrecks at Watkins Glen Corvette ZR1 Race Car Wrecks at Watkins Glen
Corvette ZR1 Race Car Wrecks at Watkins Glen Corvette ZR1 Race Car Wrecks at Watkins Glen Corvette ZR1 Race Car Wrecks at Watkins Glen


Source:
Jalopnik


Related:
RIP: Corvette C6.R Chassis #003 Dies in Transporter Fire

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CorvetteBlogger talks with Corvette Racing driver Oliver Gavin about what he does to stay in shape between races, the difference between racing with the factory team vs a privateer and his use of social media to stay in contact with his fans.



Related:
[VIDEO] CorvetteBlogger Talks with Corvette Racing’s Johnny O’Connell
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan on the Direct Injection Controversy

 

CorvetteBlogger spoke with Corvette Racing driver Johnny O’Connell prior to qualifying for the 2009 Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta. Johnny talks about the new GT2 Corvette, staying in shape as a driver and his annual celebrity auction.



Related:
[VIDEO] CorvetteBlogger Talks with Corvette Racing’s Oliver Gavin
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan on the Direct Injection Controversy

 

Corvette Racing: 2009 Petit Le Mans Photo Gallery

by Keith Cornett on September 29, 2009

Corvette


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Thanks to shakedown067 for contributing to this gallery.


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We spent a few minutes with Corvette Racing’s Program Manager Doug Fehan last Friday prior to the GT2 qualifying session. Doug talks about the 10-hour/1,000-mile Petit Le Mans, the direct injection controversy and the partnership with Michelin tires.


 

Corvette Racing: Petit Le Mans Underway

by Keith Cornett on September 26, 2009

Corvette

We’re sitting high and dry in the media center at Road Atlanta as the 12th annual Petit Le Mans gets underway. Follow this post today as we watch Corvette Racing’s GT2 C6.Rs battle in the highly competitive GT2 Class.

The heavy rains that everyone was concerned about came at 4 hours and 50 minutes into the race. The course was red flagged and the cars were ordered per their position. With no let-up, the race was called at 8:44 on the race clock. The #4 Corvette was in 4th place behind the class winning #62 Ferrari while the #3 Corvette finished 7th.

At the start of the race, the #4 Corvette moved up into the second starting position as LG Motorsport’s #28 Corvette was forced to start from the pits. Following the green flag, it took Johnny O’Connell just three laps to leapfrog the top 5 positions to settle into first. Oliver Gavin passed the #40 Ford GT 40 and quickly settled into second place.

The morning prior to the start of the race was very wet with standing water on the track and Georgia’s famous red clay mud just about everywhere you step. Although the rain has abated, a light mist continues to fall.



Related:
Corvette Racing: Qualifying at Petit Le Mans
Corvette Racing: Night Practice at Petit Le Mans
Corvette Racing: Ferrari and Porsche Complain to ACO
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R Scores First Victory at Mosport

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A Hot Lap Around Road Atlanta in a 2010 Corvette Grand Sport

by Keith Cornett on September 25, 2009

Thanks to the folks at Chevy Racing, we had the unique opportunity to take a hot lap around Road Atlanta where Petit Le Mans will run on Saturday. The course is 2.54 miles and features 12 turns. My ride was silver 2010 Corvette Grand Sport Coupe and my driver Jason put the car through its paces. On the monsterous backstretch our speed exceed 130 mph and those big Z06 brakes safely brought us to a near stand still for the bend at Turn 10.

Chevrolet designed the Grand Sport with track events in mind and I can tell you first hand they hit a home run with this car!


Related:
My Hot Lap Around Sebring in a 2009 Competition Sport Corvette

 

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