Today’s pre-qualifying session at LeMans saw Corvette Racing setting the pace for the 15 car GT1 class. The #63 Corvette driven by Jan Magnussen, Johnny O’Connell and Ron Fellows ran the fastest lap in the class at 3:49.207. The #64 Corvette with Oliver Gavin, Olivier Beretta and Max Papis was third with a lap clocked at 3:51.628. Sandwiched between the two factory C6.R Corvettes was the #007 Aston Martin piloted by Enge, Herbert and Kox which lapped the famous track in 3:50.848.
With 22 minutes remaining in the 8-hour testing session, Jan Magnussen posted the fast lap of the day, which was held by the #007 Aston Martin. The practice session gives the teams the opportunity to adjust aerodynamic settings, suspensions and test tires. This is the only practice session on the 8.5 mile course prior to the official practice and qualifying starting June 13th.
“Today has been the best ‘pre-qualifying’ I have ever had with Corvette Racing,” said Magnussen. “We managed to set up the car just the way we like it and made very good progress throughout the day. We now have a car with which we can attack hard without risking falling off, which is exactly what weâ€™ll need for the race because I think this year will be a tough one.”
“Some people wondered why we were racing in the American Le Mans Series even though we had no competition, and I think today’s result provides a clear answer,” said Doug Fehan. “We’ve done a tremendous amount of work over the winter and early this season, and the testing that we’ve done with Michelin has been outstanding. The drivers, engineers and mechanics did another exceptional job, and that’s one of the reasons why Corvette Racing is successful.”
Competing in the 15-car GT1 Class are five Corvettes (4 C6.R’s and 1 C5-R), six Aston Martin DBR9′s, two Saleen S7R’s, a Ferrari 550 and a Lamborghini Murcielago R-GT. Luc Alphand Adventures brings the C6.R Corvette that one at LeMans last year and the C5-R that finished third in class in 2006.Rounding out the Corvette teams is a C6.R Corvette from PSI Experience.
Qualifying for the world’s most prestigious auto race is June 13-14 and the 24-hour race on June 16-17. The 24 Hours of Le Mans starts at 3 p.m. local time (9 a.m. EDT) on Saturday, June 16 and finishes at 3 p.m. (9 a.m. EDT) on Sunday, June 17. SPEED will televise 17.5 hours of coverage in North America starting at 8:30 a.m. EDT on June 16.
Photo Credit: Philppe CHEMIN – ACO/Nikon
Corvette Racing’s Johnny O’Connell Previews LeMans