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Sebring: Corvette Racing Finishes 1-2

by Keith Cornett on March 18, 2007

Corvette Racing take 1-2 on the Sebring PodiumOn a perfect day for racing at Sebring International Raceway, Corvette Racing ran a perfect race. America’s premier production sports car team scored its fifth GT1 class win in six years in America’s classic endurance race, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. Oliver Gavin, Olivier Beretta and Max Papis drove their No. 4 Compuware Corvette C6.R to a 17.863-second victory over their Corvette Racing teammates Johnny O’Connell, Ron Fellows and Jan Magnussen in the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R. The Corvettes ran like clockwork throughout the grueling 12-hour race, completing 341 laps around the 3.7-mile, 17-turn circuit. Both cars made 12 routine pit stops for fuel and four Michelin tires after 55-minute stints, and then made their final stops with five minutes remaining for a splash of gas. “The Corvette C6.R was a joy to drive all day, and there wasn’t a single thing that went wrong,” said Gavin, who drove the victorious Corvette to the checkered flag. “The team performed fantastically, and there wasn’t one misstep on any of the pit stops.” “To finish with less than 20 seconds between the two cars after 12 hours of racing is quite remarkable,” Gavin noted. “You can’t get a stronger test than 12 hours at Sebring, and we’ve come through with flying colors.” After two days of downpours, race day began with a sunrise surprise as Corvette Racing unveiled the No. 3 Compuware Corvette in brilliant Arctic White paint, a salute to the limited edition Ron Fellows ALMS GT1 Champion Corvette Z06. The race began under clear skies with cool 60-degree temperatures. Fellows and Gavin started the 12-hour enduro in the No. 3 and No. 4 Corvettes respectively, with Fellows taking the point in the GT1 class when the green flag fell. The two cars held first and second in the class standings through the first two pit stops and driver changes. After 2 hours and 40 minutes of racing, Gavin took the lead following the third round of pit stops. “We had a great battle with the No. 3 Corvette, and I think the turning point was when I was able to get through traffic and gain some distance when I came in for my pit stop,” Papis reported. “Then with Gavin’s out-lap, it made just enough difference for us to get around the No. 3 car.” “After that it was continuous perfect pit work by the mechanics and great strategy by our engineer, Steve Cole,” Papis continued. “There is a lot of pressure when you have one of the best crews and three of the best drivers in the world on the other side, but my guys never missed a beat. This is the first win since my Dad passed away in December, and I know that he guided us today.” “Our Corvette was fast, strong, and fantastically reliable,” added Beretta, who scored his record-setting 29th career ALMS victory. “Everything went very smoothly in the race. I stayed out of traffic and stayed off the curbs.” The drivers and crew of the No. 3 Corvette were quick to congratulate their winning teammates. “You can’t say enough about how Corvette Racing prepares their cars – both cars were very strong, and this was a good test for the 24 Hours of Le Mans,” said O’Connell, who was aiming for a record seventh class win in Sebring. “I’ll try for No. 7 next year. I want to get that record, and I know in a Corvette I’ll be able to do it.” Corvette Racing’s next event is the Acura Sports Car Challenge of St. Petersburg in St. Petersburg, Fla., on Saturday, March 31. The 2-hour, 45-minute race on a 1.8-mile temporary street circuit will begin at 5 p.m. ET. The will be televised tape-delayed on the SPEED Channel from 8 to 11 p.m. ET. Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring GT1 Results
Pos./Drivers/Car/Laps
1. Gavin/Beretta/Papis, Chevrolet Corvette C6.R, 341
2. Fellows/O’Connell/Magnussen, Chevrolet Corvette C6.R, 341
3. Garcia/Turner/Halliday, Aston Martin DBR9, 331 NEXT EVENT
March 31, 2007, Acura Sports Car Challenge of St. Petersburg
TV: SPEED, March 31, 8 p.m. ET
Source:
CorvetteRacing.com Related:
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Sebring Preview: #3 Corvette C6.R Sets Fastest Lap in Class
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Sebring Preview: Corvettes Capture GT1 Pole

by Keith Cornett on March 16, 2007

C6.R driver Jan Magnussen in the #3 Corvette captured his third career Series pole position and his first with Corvette Racing in GT1. Magnussen turned in a lap of 1:57.061 to best teammate Oliver Gavin by 0.419 seconds. It is Magnussen’s first pole since Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in 2003 in the GTS class (now GT1) in a Ferrari 550. He also sat on the overall pole for Panoz Motor Sports at Mosport in 1999. Both times he wound up winning the race. “Everything went well,” said Magnussen, who will share the No. 3 entry with Ron Fellows and Johnny O’Connell. “We had two timed laps and the first was my fastest. The tires went away a little on the second lap and we came in. We weren’t going to improve. Our plan was to do three laps.” Corvette has won at Sebring four times in the last five seasons, the only loss coming in 2005 to Aston Martin. Team Modena’s DBR9 qualified third at 1:58.241 with Antonio Garcia behind the wheel.
Source:
PaddockTalk.com Related:
Sebring Preview: #3 Corvette C6.R Sets Fastest Lap in Class
Sebring Preview: Corvettes Edge Aston Martin in Monday’s Practice Sessions Technorati Tags:
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Flickr Photo of the Day: Penny and Her 1958 Corvette

by Keith Cornett on March 16, 2007

Last night I found this wonderful photo and story of an 86 year old Corvette owner named Penny who daily drives a 1958 convertible. The photographer is also a neighbor who said the following about her subject:

“Penny is our 86 year old neighbor and friend. She is the most youthful 86 year old I’ve ever met and she drives a 1958 Corvette in mint condition which she bought new 48 years ago.” “I asked Penny if I could take photos of her with her beloved Corvette. She graciously agreed, and said, “It needs a new paint job, but so do I!” Penny is a lovely woman and a role model of what it can be like to be a senior young-at-heart.”
86 year old owner with her 1958 Corvette
There are three photos in the Penny series and you can view them here and here. The comments are worth reading as well.
Source:
flickr.com Related:
Flickr Photo of the Day: Corvettes ‘N Clouds Technorati Tags:
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Rick Conti with a Velocity Yellow Z06 CorvetteFinally the cat is out of the bag. Last week Corvette Conti announced that his site would be down over the weekend for an overhaul. Soon rumors began to swirl that the Corvette sales specialist was leaving Ohio for greener pastures. Tuesday morning, finally ending the “irresponsible speculation” that Corvette owners are apparently famous for, Rick confirmed that he has left Spitzer Chevrolet in Cleveland to join one of the largest Chevrolet dealers in the Midwest, EVS Chevrolet in Random Lake, Wisconsin. The fact that this story has fueled a thread at Digital Corvettes that is nine pages long with people offering well wishes and promises for future Corvette purchases only confirms something I have believed in for some time now. Rick Conti is a Rock Star! You know you’re doing something right when you generate that kind of positive response when your day job is that of a car salesman. But Rick doesn’t just sell cars. He’s sells the dream. He cures the fever by leading the customer on a journey into the Corvette experience. Doubt me? Just take a look at his previous office. EVS Chevrolet is currently a sponsor on the Corvette Forum. It will be interesting to see if EVS tries to maintain a presence on both forums or just concentrate on one. A quick check of their inventory shows 33 Corvettes available so they definitely have the volume. Conti is already making waves in Wisconsin with last night’s announcement that EVS will be offering a change to win a Velocity Yellow Z06 Corvette. So congratulations Rick on the new home. I’m looking forward to reading the new CorvetteConti.com!
Source:
Digital Corvettes Related:
2007 Corvette Pace Car Allocation Info Technorati Tags:
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Jan Magnussen topped the chart in GT1 with a 1:57.466 in Corvette Racing’s #3 C6.Rs The Dane, teaming with Ron Fellows and Johnny O’Connell, was 0.103 seconds ahead of the #4 Corvette C6.R driven by Olivier Beretta, Oliver Gavin and Max Papis. They were followed by Team Modena’s Aston Martin DBR9 at 1:59.820.
Source:
PaddockTalk.com Related:
Sebring Preview: Corvettes Edge Aston Martin in Monday’s Practice Sessions
Technorati Tags:
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Ethenol Corvette on Display for Lawmakers

by Keith Cornett on March 13, 2007

1992 Ethanol CorvetteOn display for lawmakers Monday at the Advanced Vehicle Research Center in North Carolina was a Red 1992 Corvette. One look under the hood though would tell you that something is remarkably different about this C4 Corvette. The Chevrolet V8 engine has been replaced by a four-cylinder engine capable of producing 350 horsepower by running on ethanol instead of unleaded gasoline. That is a 50 horsepower gain over the original LT1 V8 that produced 300 horsepower. The experimental Corvette was rolled out Monday for North Carolina and Pennsylvania representatives who are looking into the merits of biofuels. Richard Dell, the Executive Director of the Advanced Vehicle Research Center said, “If you are going to go green, you might as well look good doing it.”
Source:
TechnicianOnline.com
Photo Credit: Matt O’Bryant Related:
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The GT1 battle between Corvette and Aston Martin appears as if it will as close this week as it was last season with just 0.372 seconds separating the top three cars. Corvette Racing’s #4 Corvette C6.R of Oliver Gavin, Olivier Beretta and Max Papis led the way with a 1:58.557 in the afternoon session, followed by the sister entry of the #3 Corvette C6.R driven by Ron Fellows, Johnny O’Connell and Jan Magnussen. Team Modena’s Aston Martin DBR9 was the quickest car in the morning session and improved its time by a tenth of a second to 1:58.929 in the afternoon.
Source:
PaddockTalk.com Related:
Aston Martin to Battle Corvette at Sebring
Corvette Racing Announces 2007 Driver Lineup Technorati Tags:
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Five Corvettes Make The Forza 2 Video Game Lineup

by Keith Cornett on March 12, 2007

2006 Corvette Z06 from Forza 2One of the most anticipated XBox 360 games from Microsoft’s Game Studios this year is Forza Motorsport 2. Forza 2 is loaded with more than 300 of the world’s hottest cars that gamers will be able to collect, personalize and tune. Recently unveiled is the list of US production cars which include five Corvette models: 1967 427 Corvette Sting Ray (we corrected their one-word use of stingray)
1970 ZR1 Corvette
1996 Corvette Grand Sport
2002 Chevrolet Corvette Z06
2006 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 Forza Motorsport 2 is expected to be released in May. Click here for the game trailer.
Source: TotalVideoGames.com Technorati Tags:
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Dale Jr: Member of Corvette Lunatic Fringe

by Keith Cornett on March 12, 2007

Dale Jr with his 2005 CorvetteThe Lunatic Fringe is what the engineers and designers at Chevrolet call the Corvette enthusiast community, according to the book “All Corvettes Are Red” by James Schefter. In a recent conversation with Dale Earnhardt Jr, The Las Vegas Sun’s Brian Hilderbrand asks Dale about his street-legal rides. Dale Jr’s personal fleet of cars consists of a 2005 Chevy pickup, a brand new Corvette, three Camaros, two Suburbans, a ’64 Impala and a ’55 Bel Air. Oh, and he owns a Jeep Cherokee that he turned into an orange monster truck. His two favorites are the new Corvette and the 1967 Camaro. About the Corvette, Dale says “The brand-new Corvette is a great car. They’re really, really fast but lightweight. Chevrolet, as a company, finally built the baddest car they could. They had always stayed on the conservative side and they finally let their hair down a little bit with this car and I’m really proud of them for that.” Want to know the real reason Dale sold his Mini Cooper last year on eBay? Read Take Five: Dale Earnhardt Jr.
Source:
LasVegasSun.com Related
Dale Jr’s 2005 Corvette For Sale on eBay Technorati Tags:
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Corvette Featured in 2007 Chevrolet SS Auto Show Video

by Keith Cornett on March 11, 2007

A video that’s been playing over at CamaroZ28.com features the entire Chevrolet SS lineup for 2007. And leading the cadre of high performance vehicles making the rounds of the Spring Mountain Advanced Driving School is a Monterey Red Corvette Coupe. The other cars in the SS lineup include the Cobalt SS, Malibu SS, Impala SS, Monte Carlo SS and the TrailBlazer SS. The Corvette SS in this video is a fantasy of course and disappers midway through.

I didn’t realize that nearly all of the Chevy models had an SS version. Where’s the HHR SS? Oh, It’s coming in 2008. I now see why Chevrolet will call the new king of the hill Corvette the SS.
Source:
CamaroZ28.com via CorvetteBlog.com Related
Video: Special Edition Corvettes at the Chicago Auto Show Technorati Tags:
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