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Corvette Racing

Gavin and Beretta Win Final ALMS GT1 Race at Long Beach

The dynamic duo of Oliver Gavin and Olivier Beretta took to the streets of Long Beach on Saturday and won the final ALMS GT1 race for Corvette Racing’s C6.R. The win at the 100 minute Tequila Patron American Le Mans Series at Long Beach was the 43rd ALMS victory for Beretta and 32nd for Gavin. For the sister car, the streets of Long Beach were not quite as forgiving as a broken half-shaft retired Johnny O’Connell and Jan Magnussen after 58 minutes of racing.

Beretta started on the GT1 pole but O’Connell was able to jump the #4 Corvette C6.R on the first lap to take an early lead. A punctured tire forced the #3 Corvette to make an unscheduled pit stop at 18 minutes into the race. O’Connell came out of the pits with fresh medium-compound Michelin tires that help cut down Beretta’s lead. The #4 Corvette pitted at the 41-minute mark with Gavin replacing Beretta. But at the 58 minute mark the #3 Corvette broke a half-shaft effectively sealing the win for Gavin and Beretta.

“When I woke up this morning, I said I want to win the race, I want to stay out of trouble, and I want to have no mechanical problems,” Beretta said. “All three came true today.”

“Racing Johnny was a lot of fun,” Beretta recalled. “I was pushing hard, and seemed to have an advantage in the braking zones, but as everyone knows, Long Beach has hard concrete walls and I could not overtake him. I tried to stay out of trouble because the main targets today were to win the race and to keep both cars in good condition to take to Le Mans. We could not afford to make any mistakes.”

“Those opening laps show just how hard we race at Corvette Racing,” O’Connell said. “Olivier had a bit of a bobble and I got by him. I was just trying to control the pace; I knew where he was stronger and was just managing things to keep him behind me. Then he had a big moment in a corner and that opened a nice gap. Suddenly I got a low tire pressure alarm, and had to pit for tires. I felt our pace was good and everything was going great for the No. 3 Corvette, but then coming out of the hairpin something in the driveline broke.”

“You don’t want to end the last ALMS GT1 race being towed in, but the Corvette Racing team gave me a very sweet race car,” O’Connell continued. “The number of problems we’ve had is so incredibly small, I’d much rather have an issue today and then go to Le Mans and win that one. That’s what we’re really thinking about.”

With the No. 3 Corvette C6.R on the sidelines, Gavin had an uncontested run to the checkered flag.

“It was shaping up to be a great race at the end,” said the Briton. “They’d had some misfortune at the start with a puncture, and then switched tires. Olivier was having real problems on the softer tire, and Johnny was catching him on the medium compound. We then switched to that tire and it was obviously the right move for these warm conditions. The car was fantastic from then onwards. After they had a mechanical issue, it was just a matter of being smart, hitting my marks, being mindful of the prototypes, and trying to pick my way through the GT2 cars sensibly.”

“Although this is our last ALMS GT1 race, it isn’t the last hurrah for the GT1 Corvettes,” Gavin noted. “We still have unfinished business in Le Mans.”

Jan Magnussen was ready to take over the No. 3 Corvette C6.R when it slowed on the course, denying the Dane the opportunity to compete in the ALMS GT1 class for one last time.

“This isn’t the way we wanted to end the GT1 program, and these things don’t happen very often for us,” said Magnussen. “To be completely honest, I don’t mind it so much here as long as we don’t have any problems at Le Mans. Johnny did a fantastic job, he raced really hard and was absolutely mega.”

“We’ll come back at Le Mans strong and reliable. Finishing off a decade with this car with everyone involved in the program at Corvette Racing, Chevrolet, Compuware, Michelin, and Katech, we owe them a big thanks.”

For Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan, the end of the GT1 era in ALMS was a bittersweet experience.

“This was not exactly the conclusion we had hoped for, but it shows how much luck plays a role in racing,” Fehan said. “Regardless of what the problem might be, the positive side is that we’re going to go back and learn from it, and that’s what has made Corvette Racing a great team. We try to turn every adversity into opportunity.”

“When you compress almost 11 years of racing memories, with so many highs and lows, so many victories and so much success, it’s really difficult to choose between them. It’s been a great run for the Corvettes in GT1, and we have one more to go – it’s going to be a great 24 Hours of Le Mans, and we are tuned up and ready to go.”

Corvette Racing will make its final challenge for the 24 Hours of Le Mans GT1 crown in France on June 13-14.



Source:
Corvette Racing
Video Credit: ABC

Related:
Corvette Racing: Beretta, #4 C6R Take the Pole at Long Beach
Corvette Racing: Corvette C6.R GT1 Era Coming to an End
Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Body

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LG Motorsports GT2 Corvette Catches Fire at Long Beach

The LG Motorsports #28 Corvette is known for its Black and Flames livery on its GT2 Corvette, but at Long Beach this weekend the heat was turned up a notch following a collision with one of the BMW M3s. The BMW tried an inside pass as LG Motorsports co-driver Boris Said had the angle. The two cars both spun out with little damage appearing to the GT2 Corvette. However a couple of laps later, flames were seen surrounding the car as Said stopped in the safety runoff lane at Turn 1 and bailed out of the Corvette.

The team was running in seventh place when fire broke out. Replay clearly shows flames inside the cockpit. We’re very much glad that Boris is alright, but this has got to be a devastating loss for car owner Lou Gigliotti and the LG Motorsports team. We’ll check with Lou to find out more later this week.

Update:

Lou gives us an update via AmericanLeMansFans.com

I just want to thank the corner workers for putting out the fire fast and helping boris out.

their quick action turned what would have been a 100% totaled car into only 20% damage, and they probably helped to squelch the fire as boris was exiting.

Either way it was a bad day.

The contact with the BMW crushed the right side exhaust pipe which then caught the carbon fiber on fire. Then on the high speed straight it blew the flames onto a fuel line with pressure in it. When that burst, the car essentially blew up into flames.

Boris is ok but he will have a few weeks of sleepless nights with the burns on his arms and eyes.

His face is swollen today and he is not happy.

Thanks to all the forum members that came by.

We will see you at the races but not sure when. Thanks
LG



Source:
Video Credit: ABC

Related:
[VIDEO] #28 LG Motorsports GT2 Corvette Qualifying in St. Pete

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#4 C6R Takes the Pole at Long Beach

Olivier Beretta added his 23rd pole after Friday’s qualifying for the American Lemans at Long Beach. Beretta laped the temporary street course in 1:17.952 to finish 0.192 seconds faster than Johnny O’Connell in the #3 Corvette C6.R. This is the second pole this season for the #4 Corvette C6.R as Gavin started first on the GT1 grid at Sebring.

Beretta and co-driver Oliver Gavin last won at Long Beach in 2007 and would really like this win of the final U.S. race for the GT1 Corvettes.

“Long Beach is a very special place,” Beretta said. “The track is very fun to drive and challenging in some places. I am very happy to be here today because I saw the team in 1999 when they first started and I was with my old Viper team at that time racing against the Corvette team.”

“The No. 4 car wants to win, the No. 3 car wants to win. Within the team we are racing for Corvette. I think everyone is very happy to be part of the team. It’s the last race for the GT1 but we’ll be back in GT2 with a strong car and a strong team.”

The Tequila Patron American Le Mans Series at Long Beach is scheduled to start at 4:15 p.m. PT on Saturday, April 18. The one-hour, 40-minute race will be televised by ABC on April 19 at 12:30 p.m. ET.



Source:
AmericanLemans.com
Photo Credit: Richard Price

Related:
Corvette Racing: Corvette C6.R GT1 Era Coming to an End
Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Body
Corvette Racing: The #3 Corvette C6.R Makes History at Sebring

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O'Connell Takes Us Inside the C6.R

Corvette Racing’s Johnny O’Connell gives us a tour of what he calls his office – the drivers seat of the Corvette C6.R. O’Connell shows us all the innovations that keep the drivers safe, comfortable and focused on going fast. We also get a walk-through of the controls the drivers use and the information available on the dash.



Source:
SPEED

Related:
Corvette Racing: Beretta, #4 C6R Take the Pole at Long Beach
Corvette Racing: Corvette C6.R GT1 Era Coming to an End
Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Body

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Corvette Racing: Corvette C6.R GT1 Era Coming to an End

by Keith Cornett on April 16, 2009

Corvette C6.R GT1 Era Coming to an End

Saturday will mark the end of an era as the last American LeMans GT1 race in the United States to feature the factory-backed Corvette Racing C6.Rs. The most successful racing team in ALMS history decided that Long Beach would be ideal to end the GT1 program due to the large fan base in Southern California that turns out to see the Corvettes year after year. The ALMS announced it too would be giving the Corvette Racing team a send-off as well in a post-qualifying ceremony in the Winners Circle.

Corvette Racing has won the last eight ALMS GT1 team and manufacturer championships and posted 75 class wins worldwide including a record 69 ALMS victories. And since its debut in 2005, the Corvette C6.R has won 38 races, the most of any GT1 car.

The 100-minute Tequila Patron American Le Mans Series at Long Beach will be the final tune-up before the C6.Rs head to France in June for the 24 Hours of LeMans where team hopes to win their final GT1 race. Following LeMans, the Corvettes will make their much anticipated transition to the ultra-competitive GT2 class for the remainder of the 2009 ALMS season.

“Long Beach is a great place to say goodbye to GT1 in the United States,” said Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan. “The race is a hugely successful event attended by thousands of fans, so it’s a very fitting place to finish the GT1 program by taking the Corvettes to the people.” “When the checkered flag falls at Long Beach, I think it will be a moving experience for everyone on the team,” said Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan. “It will mark the closing of one chapter, the likes of which will never be written again in Corvette history. At the same time, it will mark the opening of another chapter that will eventually see Corvette competing in a global GT class under the international regulations that will come into effect next year.”

Corvette driver Johnny O’Connell, racing in the GT1 class for nine years, said, “I’ve been there for all but two years of competition in GT1, so there will certainly be some sadness when we finally say goodbye to such an amazing car,” O’Connell noted. “There is a huge Corvette following in Southern California, so to let them see the Corvette C6.Rs in their last GT1 race in the U.S. is very special.” “The GT1 Corvettes are among the coolest cars in racing history, and they’ve left their mark in the record books for Corvette, for Chevrolet and for sports car racing. Over the years, we’ve had great battles and rivalries with Viper, Ferrari, Saleen, Maserati, and Aston Martin. But we’re moving to an even more competitive arena, and that’s another example of Chevrolet taking on challenges. The commitment to compete on the world stage is something that everyone at Chevrolet can be proud of.”

The Tequila Patron American Le Mans Series at Long Beach is scheduled to start at 4:15 p.m. PT on Saturday, April 18. The one-hour, 40-minute race will be televised by ABC on April 19 at 12:30 p.m. ET.



Source:
Corvette Racing
Photo Credit: Richard Price

Related:
Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Body
Corvette Racing: The #3 Corvette C6.R Makes History at Sebring

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Pratt & Miller GT2 Corvette Spied at Road Atlanta

Via our friends at BadBoyVettes, the Pratt & Miller GT2 Corvette was seen testing over the weekend at Road Atlanta. Outfitted in flat black and featuring Jake on the doors, the new GT2 Corvette also has the racing team’s motto stenciled appropriately above the rear wheels: Take No Prisoners.

Pratt & Miller GT2 Corvette Spied at Road Atlanta

Pratt & Miller GT2 Corvette Spied at Road Atlanta

Pratt & Miller GT2 Corvette Spied at Road Atlanta

The photos originally come from the forum site www.AmericanLeMansFans.com so we promptly signed up to participate in the discussions as well. You do have to register before seeing any threads.

According to some of those that have seen and heard the new GT2 Corvette during the testing:

Timed them for about a 10 minute period around 1pm in nice weather 65+F and got consistent 1:22s (low) with a quick lap of around 1:21.5 and a high of 1:23 (low).

I clocked a couple of high 1:19s on the second day of testing. Car sounds just like the GT1 car.

That’s approaching the fastest GT2 lap at the 2008 Petit LeMans. Considering that these cars are in the very early stage of development, high 1:19 laps are scary fast. Maybe they were using no restrictor (or a larger-that-permitted restrictor) in an effort to test other car components.

The GT2 Corvette is expected to make its racing debut at the Acura Sports Car Challenage at Mid-Ohio in early August.



Source:
Photo Credit: Teen Kaas via BBV

Related:
Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Body
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Steve Wesoloski: “Racing Sells Cars”

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#28 LG Motorsports GT2 Corvette Qualifying in St. Pete

We trained our camera today on the LG Motorsports #28 GT2 Corvette and drivers Lou Gigliotti and Eric Curran who were in St. Petersburg for the second stop on the American LeMans Series – the Acura Sports Car Challenge. This afternoon’s session was for practice and laying down qualifying times.

The #28 Corvette ran a fastest lap time of 1:14.633, qualifying for eighth position in GT2 and 10.857 seconds behind the pole-winning #62 Risi Ferrari 430 GT.

Eric Curran, Driver, LG Motorsports, Corvette C6: “In my first race with the team at Miller Motorsports Park last year I got the car up to third place, the team’s highest running position to date. The team has shown constant improvement and we feel we have the potential to get on the podium. This week at St. Pete, the LG Pro Long Tube Header Corvette will be partnering with Whelen Engineering. Plus, we’re really happy that Corvette fans will have our GT2 Corvette flying the Corvette banner for them.”



Related:
Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Body
LG Motorsports Makes Bid to Race GT2 Corvette at Le Mans

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Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Body

by Keith Cornett on March 31, 2009

GT2 Corvette C6.R to Wear ZR1 Body

In the video presentation from GM Road Race Manager Steve Wesoloski at Sebring, we got an update on the building of the GT2 Corvette. Steve said the following that should put a smile on any Corvette Racing fan: “They (Pratt & Miller) hung the body last week… It’s a ZR1 body. At the doors, it’s got flares front and rear to fit the racing wheels and tires. I got to tell you that it looks more aggressive than the C6.R. But It looks purposeful, it doesn’t look gaudy and it fits that class.”

We turned to BadBoyVettes.com to begin our “GT2 Watch” and sure enough, Eddie and the boys have offered a preview of what the GT2 Corvette might look like with the above cad rendering of a ZR1-based GT2. Gone of course is the hood with the polycarbonate window. Wesoloski says the GT2 will be powered by the LS7 destroked to 6 liters this year and next year the rules require another step down to 5.5 liters. Wesoloski says Pratt & Miller will be using an LS3 modified to 5.5 liters with output of around 500 horsepower to reach those goals.

Stay tuned for more GT2 news as it comes available.



Source:
BadBoyVettes.com

Related:
[VIDEO] Corvette Racing’s Steve Wesoloski: “Racing Sells Cars”
Corvette Racing: GT2 Corvette C6.R To Hit Test Track in March

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Corvette Racing's Steve Wesoloski

GM Road Race Group Manager Steve Wesoloski spoke to a group of enthusiasts at the 12 Hours of Sebring’s Corvette Corral about the state of Corvette Racing entering the 2009 season. The conversation was wide ranging and Wesoloski talks at length about how production Corvettes share technology with their racing counterparts. We also get an update on the GT2 C6.R. – did he say ZR1 body?



Related:
[VIDEO] My Hot Lap Around Sebring in a 2009 Competition Sport Corvette
[PICS] First Look: The 2009 Competition Sport Corvette
[VIDEO] The 2009 Corvette GT1 Championship Edition Debuts at Sebring
[PICS] Up Close with the 2009 Corvette GT1 Championship Edition

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Corvettes on the track at Bondurant

I was surfing the different programs offered at Bondurant’s School of High Performance Driving and one that caught my eye that I wanted to share was their upcoming half-day Performance Driving Experience. The Performance Driving Experience allows you to get behind the wheel of the C6 Corvette, Cadillac CTS-V and the Bondurant ProKart for a variety of driving instruction on different road courses. Best of all, the cost for all this fun is only $500!

Here is what you can expect during the Performance Driving Experience:

The program starts with a lead and follow exercise with your instructor on the Bondurant road course. You will see first hand the proper racing line the pros drive and will learn to Know precisely where to brake, turn in and position your car for the fast way around the track.

You’ll also compete on Bondurant’s autocross for fastest time among the others in the event. Test your abilities to handle the car at its limits and learning to be smooth with the car will improve your lap times. The autocross and the lead/follow exercises prepare you for the race in the Bondurant ProKarts.

The evening wraps up with the ProKart Enduro – just like the endurance races of Daytona, Sebring and LeMans. Teams will be formed to compete in the hour long race driving Bondurant’s 50-mph ProKarts. Strategy will play into the final outcome of the event. Teams will have to decide which driver drives each leg of the race; practice driver changes; and work together to help the rest of the team learn the track and be quick.

If you’re interested in spending a half day learning from the same instructors who have worked with Johnny O’Connell, Jimmy Johnson and Dale Jr, then the Bondurant’s Performance Driving Experience is for you. There are only a few seats left for the May 2nd Experience, so visit Bondurant.com or call 1-800-842-RACE (7223).


Source:
Bondurant.com

Related:
Bondurant Driving School Adding 2009 Corvette ZR1 to Fleet
[VIDEO] Bondurant School of High Performance Driving

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