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Corvette Racing

LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing Finishes Second and Third

by Keith Cornett on June 15, 2008

#63 Corvette C6.R at the 24 Hours of Le Mans

For the second consecutive year, Corvette Racing has finished second in the LMGT1 class. Johnny O’Connell, Jan Magnussen and Ron Fellows ran 344 laps in their Velocity Yellow Corvette C6.R and was on the lead lap but finished 4:23.843 behind last year’s winning #009 Aston Martin DBR9. The #64 Corvette C6.R piloted by Gavin, Beretta and Papis overcame a multitude of issues and fought their way back to a third place finish completing 341 laps.

Corvette Racing was running 30-40 seconds behind the #009 Aston Martin for much of the second half of the race. The tuning point came in Hour 17 when the #63 Corvette pitted and the decision was made to replace the right front rotor assembly and brake pads. The procedure took only a minute 24 seconds but the team went a lap down in the process.

“Once again, we saw one of the epic battles in all of sports car racing,” said Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan. “When you can take two cars, run them for 24 hours, and have them finish just minutes apart, it’s an incredible achievement for both teams. We had a brake issue with the No. 63 Corvette and overcame a problem with the alternator in the No. 64 Corvette, and both cars finished on the podium. When we look at Corvette Racing’s overall record and performance here at Le Mans, Chevrolet can be proud.”

The #64 Corvette C6.R also overcame much adversity and was able to fight its way back to the third position on the podium. Early in the race the Corvette had an issue with its alternator which required it to be replaced. That repair was done in just six minutes. The team also had an incident in the pits where the Corvette’s hydraulic jack came down in the middle of a tire change, dumping the Corvette on the ground without a rear left tire.

Corvette Racing strategy involved 14-lap fuel stints, one more lap than the Astons were capable of, but the rain and safety cars negated much of those opportunities. In the end, the #009 Aston Martin was able to run a nearly trouble-free race to earn their win. We congratulate them, knowing that Corvette Racing will return next year refocused and hungry for the win that has now alluded the team two years running.

Quotes from Corvette Racing’s Drivers:

Olivier Beretta, No. 64 Corvette C6.R: “I’m already thinking about 2009 Le Mans. Everyone at Corvette Racing did a fantastic job preparing the cars. We just had bad luck on the No. 64 Corvette with the alternator and the safety car, and that was two laps gone. When it was raining, I pushed hard, I felt comfortable, and did four or five stints. At Le Mans, the last thing to do is to give up, so I just pushed and hoped that we would have better luck. It’s a disappointment to finish second or third, so there is only one place to be — in first. We did that three years in a row with Corvette, I did it five times in my career, and I hope that the sixth one will come next year with Corvette Racing.”

Ron Fellows, No. 63 Corvette C6.R: “I felt that we had the opportunity to win this one. We were well prepared and both teams put up a hell of a fight — and we were second best today.”

Oliver Gavin, No. 64 Corvette C6.R: “This is a race that just sort of got away. I think we were fast enough and any one of the four cars from the Corvette and Aston Martin factory teams could have won today. It just came down to the one that had the cleaner race. We had bad luck with the alternator and then the floor issue. Maybe we were lacking some pace in the night, and got some unlucky breaks with the safety cars. It all adds up to the three laps that we were behind. That’s Le Mans for you. We’ll be back to fight them next year.”

Jan Magnussen, No. 63 Corvette C6.R: “Standing on the podium at Le Mans is special, but second is not exactly the spot we wanted. We hoped to improve on last year, and we had a nearly flawless race — but unfortunately, so did Aston Martin. In the night they had a little more speed than us, and it was tough to get back that gap. All of the guys worked so hard for this, they deserve a win. We’ll just have to work even harder and get a victory next year.”

Max Papis, No. 64 Corvette C6.R: “You need a perfect race to win Le Mans against Aston Martin, and my hat’s off to them. Sometimes you win or lose over a small detail, and that’s what happened to us. We tried every Michelin tire, from rain to dry to intermediates. I felt that everyone did everything they could. It’s great to be able to count on your teammates, to know that everyone who gets in the car will contribute. We came up a little short, but a podium finish at Le Mans is always something special.


Source
Photo Credit: Arnaud Cornilleau – ACO/Nikon

Related:
LeMans 2008: [VIDEO] #63 Corvette Gets A Change of Brakes
LeMans 2008: [VIDEO] #63 Corvette C6.R Taps LMP2′s Ass
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing Hour 12 Report
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing Coverage, Program Schedules and Links
LeMans 2008: [VIDEO] Corvette Racing Secures First Pole at LeMans
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing Dominates 1st Qualifying Round
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Team Photos
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Drivers Reflect on First LeMans Visit
LeMans 2008: Corvettes Take To The Track For Test Day

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Le Mans 2008: Corvette Racing Hour 12 Report

by Keith Cornett on June 14, 2008

Corvette Running Second to Aston Martin at Le Mans

The Aston Martin DBR9 vs Corvette C6.R battle is in full force at the midway point of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The #009 Aston Martin is currently leading the class with Jan Magnussen and the #63 Corvette just 41 seconds behind. The #007 Aston Martin is third and then the #64 Corvette C6.R is a lap down at 4th in class.

Around six hours into the race the #64 Corvette had an electrical problem and the alternator needed to be replaced. The new alternator was installed in just six minutes but when the Corvette rejoined the race it was a lap down.

Olivier Beretta, No. 64 Corvette C6.R: “We ran for a long time behind the safety car and the exhaust from the car in front of me was giving me a headache. The car is OK, everything is fine.”

Ron Fellows, No. 63 Corvette C6.R: “It was very slick out there. I was struggling and I don’t quite know why. The soft tires didn’t quite work for some reason. Jan took over on soft stickers. Traffic was not too bad but I got stuck for a while behind the No. 59 Aston and the Saleen which were fighting each other. There’s still a long distance to go, and anything can happen, so we’ll have to wait and see.”

Oliver Gavin, No. 64 Corvette C6.R: “It’s been a bit crazy. There have been moments when the traffic is so bad you’re just dawdling around the track for several corners. The car is still running quickly, but then you can lose five seconds in traffic. If you get a clear run you can do 3.50s and 3.51s, and 3.49 if you’re really lucky. I think that will be the pace for the rest of the night.”

Jan Magnussen, No. 63 Corvette C6.R: “That wasn?t too bad, just cruising around and staying out of trouble. Which isn’t easy, as there are a lot of guys out there who clearly haven’t driven a lot in the dark before. The balance of the car is okay, it’s just moving around a bit. When the sun comes out again we’ll be stronger than the Astons, I’m sure.”

Johnny O’Connell, No. 63 Corvette C6.R: “The car is a bit nicer than it was before. The toughest thing is getting a clear lap in. We’ve got a good car, and the fuel consumption is very good. We’re doing 14 laps a stint, so each time we’re gaining some time back on the Astons.”

Max Papis, No. 64 Corvette C6.R: “We’ve been pushing very hard since we had the alternator problem and it doesn’t seem like we can make up much ground. We’re very consistent, but not as fast as I was expecting us to be. It’s still a long way and everyone is pulling the best out of themselves.”


Source
Photo Credit: Christian Vignon – ACO/Nikon

Related:
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing Coverage, Program Schedules and Links
LeMans 2008: [VIDEO] Corvette Racing Secures First Pole at LeMans
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing Dominates 1st Qualifying Round
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Team Photos
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Drivers Reflect on First LeMans Visit
LeMans 2008: Corvettes Take To The Track For Test Day

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#64 Corvette C6.R at Le Mans

Corvette Racing has the LMGT1 Pole for the 76th running of the 24 Hours of LeMans and C6.Rs are looking as strong as ever for the most famous endurance race in the world. CorvetteBlogger.com will be offering fanatical coverage and we’re sharing some of our Le Mans viewing tips. SPEEDTV is providing a ton of coverage, but where will you go once the network switches from Le Mans to NASCAR on Saturday afternoon? After the jump you will find the programming schedule for SPEED as well as other links to help you follow Corvette Racing in their quest for their 6th Class win.

SPEEDTV:

The SPEEDTV network is providing 15 hours of televised race coverage this weekend beginning at 7:30am Saturday morning with tape from the LeMans test day on June 1st. Here is the entire SPEEDTV Le Mans schedule:

7:30 AM – 8:00 AM: Le Mans Test Day
8:00 AM – 8:30 AM: Le Mans Qualifying
8:30 AM – 12 Noon: Le Mans Race Coverage
8:00 PM – 8:30 PM: Le Mans Test Day (Repeat)
8:30 AM – 9:00 PM: Le Mans Qualifying (Repeat)
9:00 PM – 9:30 AM: Le Mans Race Coverage

Online Coverage:

We watched most of the qualifying rounds live on the French Eurosport.fr website. The site appears to be carrying the same feed that SPEEDTV will have access to and streaming quality was very good. The only downside is that the audio commentary is also in French so we turned down the sound and listened to RadioLeMans which broadcasts in English.

For up to the second clock information including positions, laps and speed, go to the official LeMans.org website and click the “Chronos” link.

For behind the scenes action, check out our friends at BadBoyVettes.com who have boots on the ground and in pit lane.

Several forums are also hosting conversations about the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Check out Corvette Forum and Digital Corvettes.

Finally, CorvetteBlogger.com will be adding updates and videos as the race progresses and we’ll have full coverage of Corvette Racing’s attempt to take back the podium’s top spot at Le Sarthe.


Source
Photo Credit: Richard Prince

Related:
LeMans 2008: [VIDEO] Corvette Racing Secures First Pole at LeMans
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing Dominates 1st Qualifying Round
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Team Photos
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Drivers Reflect on First LeMans Visit
LeMans 2008: Corvettes Take To The Track For Test Day

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#63 Corvette C6.R at Le Mans

For the first time ever at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the factory-backed Corvette Racing team will be starting on the Pole. Both C6.Rs were faster in today’s qualifying rounds than yesterdays but it was Jan Magnussen in the #63 Corvette C6.R that won the GT1 class Pole with a fastest lap time of 3:47.668. After running 1st and 2nd most of the day, the Saleen S7R was able to break the 3:50 mark with a lap of 3:47.761. Oliver Gavin and the #64 Corvette will start 3rd on the grid with a time of 3:48.539.

We pulled this video from the French site Eurosport.fr and thought we’d dump the French commentary for something a bit more appropriate.

Here are the unofficial qualifying results for the 76th 24 Hours of Le Mans:

LMGT1 Starting Grid
Car # Team Car Driver Time
63 Corvette Racing Corvette C6.R Magnussen, J. 3:47.668
50 Labre Competition Saleen S7R Smet, D. 3:47.761
64 Corvette Racing Corvette C6.R Gavin, M. 3:48.539
009 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin DBR9 Turner, D. 3:48.994
007 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin DBR9 Piccini, A. 3:49.060
55 IPB Spartak Racing Lamborghini Murcielago Hezemans, M. 3:52.175
72 Luc Alphand Aventures Corvette C6.R Moreau, G. 3:52.993
59 Team Modena Aston Martin DBR9 Borcheller, T. 3:53.031
53 Vitaphone Racing Team Aston Martin DBR9 Leventis, N. 3:53.475
73 Luc Alphand Aventures Corvette C6.R Goueslard, P. 3:55.736

Corvette Racing is out to avenge last year’s loss to Aston Martin. Watch the team take to the track again as the 24 Hours of LeMans gets underway at 3pm local time (9am EST) on Saturday, June 14th. SPEED TV will be carrying much of the race live.


Source
LeMans.org
Photo Credit: LeMans.org Michel Jamin – ACO/Nikon

Related:
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing Dominates 1st Qualifying Round
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Team Photos
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Drivers Reflect on First LeMans Visit
LeMans 2008: Corvettes Take To The Track For Test Day

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LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Team Photos

by Keith Cornett on June 11, 2008

Corvette Racing's 2008 LeMans Team Photos

On Tuesday the Corvette Racing team went through the Scrutineering process which culminates in the taking of team photos. I am assuming that Scrutineering is like a NASCAR technical inspection but I do know the process allows fans to get up close and personal with their favorite LeMans teams. If you have any insight to the process, please leave a comment. Activities at LeMans go into high gear today with the start of two days of official practice rounds and qualifying. As we wait for Team Corvette to take to the track, enjoy the team photos taken earlier this week.

Corvette Racing's 2008 LeMans Team Photos Corvette Racing's 2008 LeMans Team Photos Corvette Racing's 2008 LeMans Team Photos
 
Corvette Racing's 2008 LeMans Team Photos Corvette Racing's 2008 LeMans Team Photos Corvette Racing's 2008 LeMans Team Photos


Source
LeMans.org
Photo Credit: LeMans.org Philippe Chemin – ACO/Nikon

Related:
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Drivers Reflect on First LeMans Visit
LeMans 2008: Corvettes Take To The Track For Test Day

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#63 Corvette C6.R at Le Mans

The twin Velocity Yellow C6.R Corvettes belonging to the Corvette Racing team should be very pleased with their performance today in the opening qualifying sessions of the 76th running of the 24 Hours of LeMans. Both Corvettes traded the lead in the GT1 class with each other during the two periods and at the end of the first day it was Jan Magnussen in the #63 Corvette leading the GT1 class with a lap of 3:49.406 while Oliver Gavin is 1.360 seconds behind with a time of 3:50.766.

Q1 Results – LMGT1 Class
Car # Team Car Driver Time
63 Corvette Racing Corvette C6.R Magnussen, J. 3:49.406
64 Corvette Racing Corvette C6.R Papis, M. 3:50.766
50 Labre Competition Saleen S7R Smet, D. 3:50.920
55 IPB Spartak Racing Lamborghini Murcielago Hezemans, M. 3:52.175
009 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin DBR9 Turner, D. 3:52.266
007 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin DBR9 Piccini, A. 3:52.527
72 Luc Alphand Aventures Corvette C6.R Moreau, G. 3:53.990
73 Luc Alphand Aventures Corvette C6.R Goueslard, P. 3:55.736
53 Vitaphone Racing Team Aston Martin DBR9 Leventis, N. 3:57.371
59 Team Modena Aston Martin DBR9 Borcheller, T. 3:58.193

Today’s qualifying times are much faster than what we saw last year. Although bad weather caused the 2nd Qualifying round to be cancelled, During last year’s 1st Round, Gavin ran the fastest time for Corvette Racing at 3:52.130 which was good for a third place start while Magnussen’s 3:52.657 put the #63 Corvette C6.R on the grid at 5th place.

The 2nd Qualifying Session picks up again tomorrow afternoon and you can follow the action at LeMans.org


Source
LeMans.org
Photo Credit: LeMans.org Michel Jamin – ACO/Nikon

Related:
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Team Photos
LeMans 2008: Corvette Racing’s Drivers Reflect on First LeMans Visit
LeMans 2008: Corvettes Take To The Track For Test Day

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Corvette Racing’s group of drivers for the 24 Hours of Le Mans has a record any team in the paddock would envy. The six pilots have combined for 144 class wins in the American Le Mans Series and 17 at Le Mans with Corvette Racing winning five times since 2001. Despite all the success, the memories, history and significance of Le Mans still resonate throughout the team.

Olivier Beretta
Olivier Beretta
“My first experience at the track in 1995 was wonderful, but the race was not. Le Mans is such a famous event, but I had only watched it on television and had no idea what it was really about. I was happy to be here, but the race did not go well for us. Our Courage did not pass the technical inspection and was not allowed to start the race because it was too light, so it was a big disappointment. But after that, every year at Le Mans has been a wonderful experience.”


Ron Fellows
Ron Fellows
“I first went to Le Mans in 1999 with Herb Fishel (GM Racing director), Joe Negri (GM Racing Road Racing Group manager) and John Rice (engine development manager). After our first Daytona-Sebring experience with the Corvette, we planned on racing in Le Mans in 2000, so Herb and Joe asked me to go to Le Mans to get a feel for what it was like.

“On the morning of the race, the race director gave me a ride around the circuit in a Corvette. It was very cool to have some level of understanding when I came back the following year to race. Le Mans is very different – the way the paddock works, the scrutineering process; it’s all quite different than what we have in North America.

“I remember my first four laps in 2000 – it was like, ‘Wow, here we are!’ The run from Mulsanne down to Indianapolis was amazing. To do it in a street car is one thing, but when you’re going 190 mph it’s like driving in a tunnel.”


Johnny O'Connell
Johnny O’Connell
“My first Le Mans was in 1994 with the Nissan team, when we won the GT1 class. The most impressive thing was driving down Mulsanne before the race in a rental car. Just seeing the length of it, seeing how similar everything was to the movie Le Mans. When you go to Le Mans for the first time and see the Dunlop Bridge and all of the historic landmarks, it drives home the significance of this race. It felt even more special to me than going to Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

“Le Mans is a magical place, and every year here you learn something. Your first laps here are special, and you never forget them. Winning in my first year at Le Mans was a great experience, and to have won it a couple of more times since then is really good.”


Jan Magnussen
Jan Magnussen
“My first Le Mans was in 1999 when I shared a Panoz with Johnny O’Connell and Max Angelelli. Just driving at a track that has so much history was a great experience. It was my first endurance race, so I had no idea how long 24 hours really was. Halfway into the race we were about 40 laps down after several long pit stops with big problems. By six o’clock in the morning I was so tired – I hadn’t slept at all because it was all new and I wanted to experience it all. That’s when I realized there was still 10 hours to go!

“When I went home, I told everyone that was the last time I’d ever do Le Mans. But things change, and now Le Mans is my absolute favorite race of the year. Le Mans is the greatest race, but it helps when you’re with one of the best teams.”
 

Corvette Racing returns to the track on Wednesday for 2 days of qualifying and practice sessions. The 24 Hours of LeMans gets underway at 3pm local time on Saturday, June 14th. SPEED TV will be carrying much of the race live.


Source
Motorsport.com

Related:
LeMans 2008: Corvettes Take To The Track For Test Day
LeMans 2007: #63 Corvette C6.R Finishes in 2nd Place

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[VIDEO] VetteGirl.TV Video Series Makes Debut

by Keith Cornett on June 5, 2008

VetteGirl.TV Video Series

Becky Anderson is a typical mother of three, but after meeting Patrick Gramm of Digital Corvettes and Vette Dogs fame, she trades in the minivan for Patrick’s 2002 Z06 Corvette race car. “Becky has no qualifications whatsoever to be a Corvette race car driver, except for her enthusiasim and desire to go really fast.” This is the set up for the first episode of Vette Girl, a new weekly video series that chronicles Becky’s pursuit of speed. According to some of the comments from Patrick, the show has grand aspirations for 40 episodes this year.

Here’s the first episode which has Becky taking the broken Z06 to the shop and acutally gets a lesson on performing some of the mechanical upgrades herself:

New episodes of Vette Girl’s racing adventures will be shown on DigitalCorvettes.com when available. Also, check out the forums for discussing the videos.


Source:
DigitalCorvettes.com

Related:
[VIDEO] Vette Dogs Corvette TV Show Makes Debut

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LG Motorsports/Riley Technologies GT2 #28 Corvette

As the next ALMS race doesn’t take place until after the 24 Hours of Le Mans, we’ll take a look back to last weekend’s GT2 class at the Utah Grand Prix. The LG Motorsports/Riley Technologies #28 Corvette driven by Eric Curran and Lou Giglotti were in the hunt for their first podium finish for much of the race. The team is continuing to show improvement week to week and even the commentators from SPEED were impressed.

Performance adjustments allowed the team to shed some weight off the #28 Corvette and the car appeared to be much faster than some of the races we’ve seen over the previous weeks. As for the final results, the team came in 7th in the GT2 class which was their best class finish yet.

We’ll continue to follow Lou and the #28 Corvette as it battles the dominant Porsches and Ferraris in the ultra-competitive GT2 class.


Source:
SPEED

Related:
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing: A Day at the Races
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing: #3 C6.R Scores Third GT1 Win at Utah

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Corvette Racing in Salt Lake City

Johnny O’Connell and Jan Magnussen cruised to their third victory of the year at Sunday’s Utah Grand Prix at the Miller Motorsports Park outside of Salt Lake City. The #3 Corvette C6.R finished the two hour thirty minute race with a one-minute, 4.9-second victory over their #4 Corvette C6.R teammates Olivier Beretta and Oliver Gavin. O’Connell and Magnussen now hold an eight point lead (86-78) in the GT1 Drivers Championship.

This was a race that really wasn’t a race as the teams used the 3.048 road circuit as their final test and tune-up for next month’s 24 hours of Le Mans. Keeping the two Corvettes out of danger was the top priority and luckily they did just that. It was such a non-race that SPEED gave the Corvette Racing team just two and half minutes of direct coverage.

The two Corvette C6.Rs are now on their way back to Detroit where they will be cleaned up and then shipped to France later this week.

Corvette Racing’s next event is the 24 Hours of Le Mans in Le Mans, France, on June 14-15. The 76th running of the classic 24-hour endurance race on the 8.5-mile Circuit des 24 Heures du Mans will begin at 3 p.m. local time (9 a.m. EDT). Portions of the race will be televised live on SPEED.


Source:
SPEED
Photo Credit: American LeMans

Related:
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing: A Day at the Races
Corvette Racing: O’Connell, Magnussen Win GT1 at Long Beach

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