This SlideShowPro photo gallery requires the Flash Player plugin and a web browser with JavaScript enabled.

Corvette Racing

Corvette Racing: Inside the GT2 Corvette C6.R

by Keith Cornett on August 4, 2009

Corvette Racing: Inside the GT2 Corvette C6.R

As we learn more about the GT2 Corvette C6.R race cars, it’s becoming more apparent that Corvette Racing’s unsung hero is the technological know-how that allowed the team to go from concept approval in September 2008 to race-ready in August 2009. In this next press release from GM Racing, we get a look at the technical insights on the new production GT Race Car and what the engineers faced in designing the next-generation Corvette C6.R.


Corvette Racing's GT2 C6.R

Airflow through the front brakes and radiator is shown in this CFD graphic. Brake cooling air exits the front wheels and travels along the side of the car while radiator cooling air moves over the roof and under the wing (Richard Prince/GM Racing Photo).


Corvette Racing's GT2 C6.R

This CFD graphic shows areas of high and low pressure on the GT2 Corvette C6.R body. Red on the front fascia, sideview mirrors and wing indicates high pressure; blue on the roof and fenders indicates areas of low pressure (Richard Prince/GM Racing Photo).


Corvette Racing's GT2 C6.R

This CFD study visualizes surface vortices and the resulting turbulence as the GT2 Corvette C6.R moves through the air. Airflow around the wheel openings and the wing is highly turbulent as indicated by the blue wakes, while the airflow over the roof is relatively undisturbed (Richard Prince/GM Racing Photo).


Corvette Racing's GT2 C6.R

The streamlines in this CFD (computational fluid dynamics) study illustrate the airflow around the body of the GT2 version of the Corvette C6.R (Richard Prince/GM Racing Photo).


Corvette Racing's GT2 C6.R

This CAD (computer-aided design) illustration shows the overall layout of the GT2 Corvette C6.R’s components, with a GM small-block V8 engine mounted behind the centerline of the front wheels and a 6-speed sequential-shift transaxle between the rear wheels (Richard Prince/GM Racing Photo).

Corvette Racing White Paper: Inside the Next-Generation Corvette C6.R

Technical Insights on Corvette Racing’s Production-Based GT Race Car

DETROIT – Corvette Racing is moving toward the future of production-based sports car racing with the introduction of the next-generation Corvette C6.R race car. With international regulations converging around a single GT class, Corvette Racing will continue its motorsports heritage by racing against manufacturers and marques that Corvette competes with in the marketplace. This white paper highlights the design and development of the latest version of the Corvette C6.R and spotlights its technical features.

The second-generation Corvette C6.R is the successor to the championship-winning C5-R and C6.R race cars that have dominated the GTS and GT1 categories in the last decade. Corvette Racing retired its GT1 Corvette C6.R race cars following the team’s sixth victory in the 24 Hours of Le Mans on June 14, 2009. Corvette Racing will compete in the GT2 category of the American Le Mans Series for the remainder of the 2009 season, starting at the series’ sixth round at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 8. During this transition, Corvette Racing will test and develop the next-generation C6.R race cars in anticipation of a unified GT class in 2010.


PRODUCTION-BASED PLATFORM

The next-generation Corvette C6.R race car has strong ties to its production counterpart. Under the leadership of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) and the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), the Corvette Racing program’s key objectives include reducing costs, encouraging independent teams to purchase and race Corvettes, and reinforcing the relevance of racing technology to production vehicles.

Doug Fehan, Corvette Racing program manager: “Key elements in the decision to move to the new class were the strong visual and mechanical similarities between production Corvettes and the racing Corvettes, along with the increased production content in the GT2 race car. Corvette is a technological development platform for GM, and this move provided the opportunity to design and develop technology and components that would be relevant to future Corvettes and other GM vehicles. This connection drew the race team even closer to the production Corvette group and gave us new areas to explore together.”

Tadge Juechter, Corvette chief engineer: “Behind the scenes, the race team and the production car team have grown closer together, finding numerous ways to support each other and to make both cars better. Most automotive companies give lip service to claims like ‘racing improves the breed’ or ‘race on Sunday, sell on Monday’. For team Corvette, it is a daily reality. It is now impossible to imagine one team without the other.

“The move to GT2 only strengthens the trajectory we were on. The Corvette race and production teams will grow even closer together, and so will the cars. Having more commonality will increase the synergies in the development process. Facing our market rivals on the track will be a thrill for race fans and strong evidence that potential sports car customers should buy a Corvette. I am confident that endurance racing in GT2 will be an enormous benefit to our customers and to General Motors.”


GT2 HOMOLOGATION

The regulations require the Corvette C6.R race car to be based on a production vehicle. This designated vehicle then determines the specifications for homologation (acceptance and approval) of the racing version. The GT1 version of the Corvette C6.R was homologated on the production Corvette Z06. A crucial step in the design of the GT2 version of the Corvette C6.R was the selection of the Corvette ZR1 as the basis for its homologation.

Doug Louth, Corvette Racing engineering director: “Early in the design process we had to decide whether to use the base Corvette coupe with its steel chassis and narrow bodywork or the Corvette Z06 or ZR1 models, which have an aluminum chassis and wider bodywork. We ran a number of simulations and CFD studies comparing the wide versus narrow bodies and looked at various track width options. In the end, the data favored the wider car, even at a high-speed, low-drag track like Le Mans. Fortunately that aligned with the marketing objective to showcase the ZR1 as the Corvette that offers the highest level of performance.”


ZR1 ROOTS

The Corvette ZR1 is an American supercar that has won accolades for its extraordinary performance and exceptional value. While the GT rules preclude the use of the ZR1′s supercharged 638-horsepower LS9 small-block V8 engine, they do permit the race car to take full advantage of the ZR1′s aerodynamic enhancements that were developed in concert with Corvette Racing. The production Corvette ZR1 has wide carbon fiber front fenders with dual vents, a full-width rear spoiler, and a front fascia splitter – features designed to enhance high-speed stability and driver control.

Fehan: “The ZR1 uses a different splitter and a different rear spoiler than other Corvette models, and both of these enhance the Corvette C6.R’s aerodynamic performance. The ZR1 was conceived as a 200 mph road car and it was developed with input from Corvette Racing. Race team engineers worked with Corvette chief engineer Tom Wallace and his successor, Tadge Juechter, providing track data and CFD simulations that had been done on the race cars. Working together they were able to develop an effective and balanced aero package for the Corvette ZR1.

“The Corvette C6.R race car is now virtually identical to the Corvette ZR1 street car in appearance. The rules in GT1 allowed us to section and widen the fenders, but the GT2 rules require production-type fenders with simple flares to accommodate wider tires. Consequently the race car looks like a production car, because it fundamentally is one.”


ALUMINUM FRAME

The GT2 version of the Corvette C6.R is built on the same aluminum frame that underpins production Corvette Z06 and ZR1 models. In contrast, the GT1 race cars used steel frames from the Corvette coupe and convertible. Both aluminum and steel production Corvette frames are hydroformed, a process that uses high-pressure hydraulics to form complex shapes.

Fehan: “The race team had been exploring the aluminum frame for several years. The traditional methods of connecting a steel roll cage to an aluminum frame simply didn’t provide a level of safety that met GM Racing’s stringent standards. Consequently we have developed a proprietary installation method that is consistent with GM’s commitment to safety.”

Louth: “The race car chassis retains all of the elements in the production chassis structure – the windshield frame, the hoop around the rear of the passenger compartment, the door hinge pillars, the drivetrain tunnel, the firewall, the floor pan – they’re all there. In the GT1 class, these components could be removed, modified, or trimmed down, but the ACO and FIA rules for GT2 require that we maintain all of the primary production chassis structure in the race car.”


AERODYNAMICS

Differences in the GT1 and GT2 rules account for many of the changes in the Corvette C6.R’s aerodynamic package. The front fender louvers used in GT1 are not allowed in GT2. The chord width of the rear wing was reduced 25 percent, from 400mm to 300mm. The diffuser now starts at the back of the rear wheel opening rather than at the centerline of the rear axle; strakes and sidewalls are not permitted, so the GT2 diffuser is a flat panel while the GT1 diffuser was effectively a tunnel. The production-based ZR1 splitter extends 25mm, in contrast to the 80mm splitter allowed under the GT1 rules.

Louth: “CFD (computational fluid dynamics) was the primary tool used to develop the aero package in the short time that was available. During the validation phase, the team performed high-speed straight-line tests and conducted a full-scale rolling-road wind tunnel test. We have been through all of our aerodynamic tuning options at the track, and the baseline aero settings meet all of the performance targets.

“As we developed the race car aero package, we went through a number of reviews with the Corvette design group. They were very interested not only in what we were doing, but what they might take away for future Corvettes. There was a two-way exchange of concepts and ideas, and it proved to be a very rewarding relationship.”

Fehan: “The production splitter we are using in GT2 does not require a massive rear wing to produce aerodynamic balance, and consequently there is less total downforce. This actually makes the car more predictable over a wide range of speeds. The GT1 version had tremendous downforce, but the downforce was directly proportional to speed. In slow corners the car behaved differently than it did in fast corners, so the drivers had to adjust for the amount of grip they would have at various speeds. With the GT2 aero package, the car behaves very predictably in low, medium, and high-speed corners. Consequently the drivers report that the new Corvette C6.R a very good race car.”


SUSPENSION AND STEERING

The GT1 Corvette C6.Rs were equipped with carbon brake rotors, while GT2 regulations require ferrous (steel) brake discs. The Corvette race car’s wheel and tire dimensions are the same in both classes, but the GT2 version uses aluminum rather than magnesium rims.

Fehan: “The production ZR1 has ceramic brakes, which we would love to use in the race cars. However, the series requires steel brakes to help contain cost.”

Louth: “Early in the GT1 program we ran steel brakes in the 24-hour Daytona race, so we did have some previous experience. We also received excellent information from our brake and pad suppliers, and input from GM’s other racing programs. Initially there was some concern about the switch from carbon to steel brakes, but in the end the braking performance is actually very good. Steel brakes don’t produce the absolute stopping power of carbon brakes, but the braking performance – repeatability, consistency and driver feel – hit our targets in fairly short order.

“The GT2 race car has a production steering column, with a fully adjustable steering wheel – a real convenience with as many as three drivers per car. The rack-and-pinion steering is also production.”


SAFETY AND ERGONOMICS

Safety is the No. 1 priority at GM Racing. The GM Racing safety research and development program was founded in 1992, and it expanded from its initial focus on open-wheel cars to encompass stock car racing, sports car racing, drag racing and off-road racing. The racing safety program is built on the foundation of GM’s world-class safety research and testing programs for passenger vehicles.

Louth: “Our chief concern was the aluminum chassis and the attachment of the steel safety cage. Analysis and physical testing of structural components suggest that this car is the safest GT car on the track. We carried over the energy-absorbing panels in the doors, the door bar structure, the crush structure, the right-side safety net, and other safety features from the GT1 Corvettes. These are not mandatory items, but we chose to add those components at a considerable cost and weight disadvantage because driver safety is our top priority.

“Driver ergonomics was not a big challenge because the cockpit layout and packaging is very similar to the GT1 C6.R. The production-based air conditioning system was carried over from the previous version because it had proven to be very effective, although improvements were made in the ducting.”


TELEMETRY

The GT1 Corvettes were instrumented with nearly 100 sensors that monitored everything from engine oil temperature to tire pressures. Much of this information was transmitted in real time from the car to the pit, where engineers and technicians could watch for developing problems. The GT2 rules do not allow telemetry, so this data must now be downloaded during pit stops.

Louth: “Without telemetry, the driver has more responsibility to catch minor problems before they become major problems. Obviously a driver is extremely busy during a race, so he may be less effective at monitoring data and seeing warnings than someone in the pits who is focused on a computer screen. Since we cannot use telemetry in GT2, we are working on our dashboard alarms to alert the driver when there is a problem without distracting him when operating conditions are normal during a race.

“The ban on telemetry is due to cost considerations. However, the downside of not having telemetry is that when something does go wrong, it can result in a catastrophic failure that costs much more. A blown engine, a seized transmission, or a punctured tire that causes a crash and injures a driver are failures that can often be avoided or stopped short with telemetry.”


CONSTRUCTION AND TESTING

The GT2-spec Corvettes were designed, built and tested on a compressed schedule. The program was approved and announced in September 2008, and construction of the first chassis began in early December. The first track test was conducted at Road Atlanta on April 8-9, followed by single-car tests in Elkhart Lake, Wis., and Sebring, Fla.

Fehan: “Testing has gone very well, and that’s not really surprising with all of the lessons we learned in GT1. In the initial track test, we rolled the car out of the trailer and ran for two straight days with absolutely no problems. It was incredible, and everyone was understandably very excited.

“Corvette Racing has the advantage of sophisticated computer models for aero and chassis development, and we have a library of suspension setups. In the first two days of testing, we hit all of the predictions dead on, which validated both our software and our design.

“In the limited testing we’ve done so far, we’ve been very impressed with the car’s durability, reliability and performance. We’ll continue to focus on those three factors in the upcoming races. We view the rest of this year as a development cycle, and we believe that our experience as a team in preparation, race strategy, and pit stop execution should allow us to be competitive even if there is a slight performance disparity.”

Gary Pratt, Corvette Racing team manager: “We’re not running for a championship this year, so the testing we’d prefer to do in private we do in the public eye. We’re looking at the next five races as preparation for 2010. Our goal is to learn as much as we can.

“In a perfect world we’d have the rest of this year to test and then come out with new cars at the start of next season, but we felt we just needed to get out there and race for the Corvette customers and fans. We think we’ll be competitive, but there are many good cars and teams in GT2. We know it will be a challenge, and we’re looking forward to it.”

The GT2 version of the Corvette C6.R will make its debut at the Acura Sports Car Challenge at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio. The two-hour, 45-minute race is scheduled to start at 3 p.m. EDT on Saturday, August 8. ABC will televise the race tape-delayed at 2:30 p.m. EDT on Sunday, August 9.



Source:
A New Era: Introducing Corvette Racing’s GT2 ZR1 C6.R
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan Talks about the ZR1-Based GT2 Corvette C6.R
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan Talks about Le Mans, Green Challenge and Jake
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing: Gavin and Beretta Win Final ALMS GT1 Race at Long Beach
Corvette Racing: Pratt & Miller GT2 Corvette Spied at Road Atlanta
Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Bodyy

Technorati Tags:
| | | | | | | | | | |

Corvette Racing: GM to Unveil ALMS GT2 C6.R on Tuesday

Our friends at BadBoyVettes have alerted us to a GM Press conference on Tuesday August 4th at 1pm EST for the introduction of the new ZR1-homologated GT2 Corvette C6.Rs. BBV says the new Corvettes will be sporting a new livery created by the GM Design Center.

We can tell you the Corvettes will be yellow and Jake will be there. Corvette Racing’s Program Manager Doug Fehan confirmed as much back in April while talking about the GT2 Corvettes at the Corvette Museum’s Birthday Day Bash:

“Yellow will be the predominant color. We have a tremendous amount of equity built up in that and its not just here in the United States, its around the world…Photographers love it, magazine publishers love it, art people love it, so when you look at all the ancillary stuff that we are able to achieve by retaining that velocity yellow color, that will be the base color on the car but I can assure you that graphically, they will be very distinguishable in the way they look.”

The Corvette Racing team returns to the ALMS grid this weekend for the Acura Sports Car Challenge at the Mid-Ohio August 6-8th. The two-hour, 45-minute race is scheduled to start at 2:10 p.m. ET on Saturday, August 8. The race will be televised same-day tape-delayed on NBC at 4 p.m. ET.

We are checking with some of the Chevrolet communications people to see if the press conference will be available online. We’ll share any details we learn as well as provide full covereage of the unveiling on Tuesday afternoon. Until then, you can catch up again on some of the GT2 Corvette’s details by watching the Doug Fehan/GT2 Corvette video.



Related:
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan Talks about the ZR1-Based GT2 Corvette C6.R
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan Talks about Le Mans, Green Challenge and Jake
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing: Gavin and Beretta Win Final ALMS GT1 Race at Long Beach
Corvette Racing: Pratt & Miller GT2 Corvette Spied at Road Atlanta
Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Bodyy

Technorati Tags:
| | | | | | | | | | |

Corvette Z06 Pace Car Leads The Pack at NASCAR's Allstate 400

Yesterday was the running of the Allstate 400 at the Brickyard. As in the past, the Corvette Z06 was chosen as the Pace Car and we got to say that the graphics package consisting of red and charcoal work very well. The Festival Corvettes, which are the silver Convertibles, were also on hand for the weekend and are used for ferrying drivers and track officials and VIPs to various events during the week leading up the race.

Check out the gallery of photos from Corvettes at the Allstate 400.

Corvettes at the Allstate 400 Corvettes at the Allstate 400 Corvettes at the Allstate 400
Corvettes at the Allstate 400 Corvettes at the Allstate 400 Corvettes at the Allstate 400
Corvettes at the Allstate 400    


Source:
Indianapolis Motor Speedway
Photo Credits: Bret Kelley, Chris Jones, Ron McQueeney

Related:
Indy 500 Festival Corvettes Help Kickoff Race Month on the Circle
Over The Fence: Corvette to Pace 2007 Allstate Brickyard 400

Technorati Tags:
| | | | | | | | | | | | |

PK Carsport Corvette C6.R Wins the 24 Hours of Spa

by Keith Cornett on July 26, 2009

PK Carsport Corvette C6.R Wins the 24 Hours of Spa

It was a battle between Corvette and Maserati for what could be the final run of GT1 race cars at the 24 Hours of Spa. In the end, it was the PK Carsport C6.R driven by Mike Hezemans, Anthony Kumpen, Jos Menten and Kurt Mollekens that finish a comforable 11 laps ahead of the Vitaphone Racing Team (DHL) Maserati MC12.

Corvette Racing’s Oliver Gavin was driving at Spa this weekend for the Belgian FIA GT Selleslagh Racing Team (SRT). Gavin was leading at 21 hours when the car developed a serious oil problem and spent the majority of the final hours in the garage. It would come out and complete a final lap for certification and finished 19th overall.

Another member of the Corvette Racing Team, Marcel Fassler, faired much better with the Phoenix Racing Audi R8 LMS. Fassler and co-drivers Henri Moser, Alexander Margaritis, and Marc Besseng dominated the G2 category and rose up the standings during the cool night hours. Unable to hold off the resurgent Vitaphone Maserati, the Audi R8 finished 15 laps down for third overall.

This is the second win in two years for PK Carsport Corvette at the 24 hours of Spa.


Source:
Autosport.com
Photo Credit: Corvette Motorsport

Related:
Corvette Racing: Oliver Gavin Joins SRT for Spa 24
Spa 24: Corvettes Finish 1st and 3rd

Technorati Tags:
| | | | | | | | | |

Corvette Racing: Oliver Gavin Joins SRT for Spa 24

by Keith Cornett on July 14, 2009

Corvette Racing: Oliver Gavin Joins SRT for Spa 24
Photo Credit: Richard Prince

Corvette Racing’s Oliver Gavin will be joining the Belgian FIA GT Selleslagh Racing Team (SRT) as part of its driver line-up for the upcoming Spa 24 Hours on July 25-26th. Gavin will share seat time behind the wheel of the SRT Corvette C6.R with Belgian Bert Longin, the reigning FIA GT3 Champion, James Ruffier of France, and former Belgian GT Champion, Maxime Soulet. Oliver last raced at the Spa 24 Hours in 2007 with Luc Alphand Aventure’s C6.R .

Make sure you check out Corvette Motorsport for complete live coverage of the Spa 24 Hours.

 

Corvette Racing: GT2 C6.Rs Officially Entered for Mid-Ohio

Corvette Racing’s return to the American Le Mans series is now official. PlanetLeMans.com is reporting that the two Corvette C6.Rs have officially been entered to run in the GT2 class at the Acura Sports Car Challenge in Mid-Ohio. The #3 and #4 Corvettes will now go head to head with Ferrari, Porsche, Panoz, BMW, Ford and Dodge in what looks to be one of the most diverse and competitive classes in auto racing.

Johnny O’Connell and Jan Magnussen will be driving the #3 Corvette C6.R while Olivier Beretta and Oliver Gavin will be behind the wheel of the #4 Corvette. O’Connell and Magnussen return fresh off their GT1 class win at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the sixth victory in the world’s greatest race since 2001.

“For several years now, the competition in GT2 has been the closest and most competitive among all our classes,” said Scott Atherton, American Le Mans Series President and CEO. “With the news of Corvette Racing’s official entry into the category at Mid-Ohio, the class quite possibly becomes the most diverse and competitive ever. It also serves as another example of the continued growth and success of the American Le Mans Series. Corvette never truly left, but it’s safe to say that they were missed by the countless participants at our Corvette Corrals and fans worldwide. We would like to be the first to officially say, ‘Welcome back!’”

The Acura Sports Car Challenge at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio is scheduled to start at 2:10 p.m. ET on Saturday, August 8th. The race will be televised same-day tape-delayed on NBC at 4 p.m. ET.



Source:
PlanetLemans.com
Photo Credit: Planetlemans – Marcel ten Caat

Related:
2009 Le Mans 24: Corvette Racing Scores Sixth GT1 Class Win
Corvette Racing: Pratt & Miller GT2 Corvette Spied at Road Atlanta
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Doug Fehan Talks about the ZR1-Based GT2 Corvette C6.R

Technorati Tags:
| | | | | | | | | | |

Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire!

by Keith Cornett on June 26, 2009

Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on 

Fire!

In a scene somewhat reminiscent of Boris Said’s fire in the LG Motorsports #28 GT2 Corvette at Long Beach, this SCCA racer was recently tearing up the track at Road America when his C6 T-1 race car caught on fire.

Apparently oblivious to the fire raging underneath his Corvette, the racer lost control and swung around as the intense flames had melted the tires. Here’s how it all unfolded

Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire! Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire! Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire!
Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire! Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire! Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire!
Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire! Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire! Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire!
Hot Racing Action Features Corvette on Fire!    


Source:
Jalopnik

Related:
[VIDEO] LG Motorsports GT2 Corvette Catches Fire at Long Beach
[PICS] C6 Corvette CharGrilled in the Ukraine

Technorati Tags:
| | | | | | | | |

Ron Fellows and Johnny O'Connell in the Corvette Racing Garage at Le Mans
Ron Fellows and Johnny O’Connell at Le Mans
Photo Credit: Richard Prince

As the official photographer of Corvette Racing, Richard Prince has unlimited access to the team and the events surrounding last week’s running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. His photos really give us a sense of the commitment it takes to win the most famous 24 hour endurance race. Check out his photo gallery on Badboy Vettes.

Corvette Racing Trivia:

Here’s a little something to look for: How was Ron Fellows on board the #63 Corvette C6.R at Le Mans? Be the first to leave a comment with the answer and I’ll send you a Corvette Price Guide gratis!

 

Toasting a Decade of Excellence for Corvette Racing

by Keith Cornett on June 17, 2009

Corvette Racing at Le Mans
Photo Credit: Richard Prince

If you are a frequent reader of AutoExtremist.com’s Peter De Lorenzo, you know that he has been a big supporter of GM’s Corvette Racing program because of its return on investment that racing brings via the technology transfer to production Corvettes. De Lorenzo has talked about the two distinct camps within GM corporate Marketing when it comes to Racing and is especially critical of the support the automaker gives to NASCAR year after year.

In his latest “Fumes” column, Peter reviews the awards and accolades that Corvette Racing has generated over the last decade and discusses the future of the program. As usual, this is a must-read for any racing enthusiast.

Read: Toasting a decade of excellence for Corvette Racing

 

Sixth Class Win for Corvette Racing's #63 C6.R
Photo Credit: Richard Prince

Corvette Racing came to La Sarthe with a single-minded goal to win the GT1 class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and that’s exactly what they accomplished. Piloting the #63 Velocity Yellow Corvette C6.R across the finish line was Johnny O’Connell, who became the only American to win Le Mans 4 times. The #64 Corvette seized the GT1 lead with 3 hours left to run, but transmission problems knocked the Black Corvette out of the race.

Coming in second was the White #73 Corvette run by Luc Alphands team and in third place was the Jetalliance Racing Aston Martin DBR9, which was way down on the leader board most of the race but refused to quit. Once the #64 Corvette went out of the race, the Aston Martin was assured a podium finish.

Corvette Racing Quotes

Jan Magnussen, No. 63 Compuware Corvette C6.R:
“Four Le Mans wins feels absolutely great. My role in this one was for only half the race. I really have to thank Johnny and Antonio for working so hard during the last half of the race. Also a special mention to my crew chief Dan Binks. Standing on the victory podium at Le Mans is just amazing, and I hope that we can carry on.”

Johnny O’Connell, No. 63 Compuware Corvette C6.R:
“Winning at Le Mans is hard because it’s all about pushing as hard as you can while being perfect with your technique and taking care of the car. I think the three of us did that, even when we were wiped out and tired. The guys in the No. 64 Corvette might have had a little more mid-corner grip than us, so we had to push every minute. When you do that, sometimes you make mistakes, but the No. 63 finished the race as pretty as it started it.”

Antonio Garcia, No. 63 Compuware Corvette C6.R:
“I’ll tell you tomorrow when I wake up what it means to win Le Mans twice. This is my third 24-hour race win a row – I won Le Mans last year and Daytona 24 this year. I cannot ask for anything else. Corvette Racing gave me a car and a crew that worked perfectly, and I really appreciate it. During the night and this morning, I was up to my best. That’s what a proper team needs to be – everyone giving 100 percent.”

Oliver Gavin, No. 64 Compuware Corvette C6.R:
“It didn’t seem to matter what we did today, it was something just ready to trip us up, whether it was punctures or safety cars or this gearbox problem. I think that Olivier, Marcel and myself had driven well throughout the race, and it was going to be extremely close at the finish. It was going to come down two cars racing at the end of the race, which is quite unusual here at Le Mans. I really thought we had a great shot at it today, after we kept clawing back and finally pulled away, but then the final card played by Lady Luck was all bad luck. It’s desperately disappointing.”

Olivier Beretta, No. 64 Compuware Corvette C6.R:
“The car was good, then I had a puncture and my car was starting to be difficult, so they called me in and changed the tire. On the restart, I made the pass on the No. 63 Corvette before the Ford chicane. There was a lot of confusion and I just put the throttle flat on the floor.”

“It seemed like we were racing against the pace car all day. We’d lose two minutes, catch back up, and then lose two minutes again. The team did a very good job, we never gave up, and what happened today is just part of racing. We are professionals and have to accept it – but to be honest, you have to be disappointed when you push hard and don’t win.”

Doug Louth, Corvette Racing Engineering Director:
“It was easy to stay awake this morning because there was a lot happening. It couldn’t have been any closer between the two Corvettes – if they had both run to the finish, it would have come down to the wire. There were a lot of possible scenarios with pit stops and tires. Unfortunately that didn’t happen, but Corvette C6.Rs finished first and second.”

Dan Binks, Crew Chief, Corvette C6.R No. 63:
“Winning Le Mans is so unbelievable that I can’t even talk about it. All of the people here worked their butts off, and we’re just the guys who show up at the track. There are dozens of guys back in the shop working on this stuff.”



Source:
Corvette Racing
Photo Credit: Richard Prince

Related:
2009 Le Mans 24: Live Blogging Corvette Racing at the 24 Hours of Le Mans
2009 Le Mans 24: Corvette Racing Qualifies One-Two in GT1 Class
Chevrolet’s Ed Peper: Corvette Racing Program to Continue Under GM Bankruptcy

Technorati Tags:
| | | | | | | | | | |

Page 55 of 77« First...1020304050...5354555657...6070...Last »