Corvette Racing’s No.3 C7.R Wins the Rolex 24 at Daytona

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Corvette Racing's No.3 C7.R Wins the Rolex 24 at Daytona
Photo Credit: Rolex 24 at Daytona

At the 53rd Rolex 24 at Daytona, Corvette Racing’s two C7.Rs were in the mix from the green flag but it was the No.3 Corvette piloted by Jan Magnussen, Antonia Garcia and Ryan Briscoe who came out on top in the GTLM class. After a yellow caution period went green with just minutes left in the race, Antonio Garcia held off the second place No.25 BMW to bring home the checkered flag for the first race of the 2015 TUDOR United Sportscar Championship.

“I knew that yellow was coming!” said Garcia. “We always have a yellow. I just can’t thank the whole team and Corvette fans enough and Corvette Racing and all the guys and these two drivers (teammates). We all did amazing. We stayed out of trouble. The car is in perfect shape. Not a single touch. I think that’s what it takes just to keep it alive and bring it home in one piece, that’s the thing. So, again, finally I get this watch and I think these guys were waiting a few years for that (laughs).

Some of the most amazing sports car racing happened during the 24 hour race and many will remember the thrilling battle overnight between Ferrari, Porsche, BMW and the two factory backed Corvettes in the overnight hours.

The No.4 Corvette C7.R with Oliver Gavin, Tommy Milner and Simon Pagenaud led the race at various times and had just taken the lead in GTLM with 3 hours left when Tommy Milner ran into a Prototype Challenge car just after a restart and the time to fix the damaged front nose put the car four laps down.

Gavin also had a problem on a restart earlier in the race but the repairs mostly consisted of yellow bonding tape on the front nose and so he was back out immediately.

“It was a bit of a crazy restart, just trying to get heat in cold tires, I was trying to catch the #3 car, got a bit too deep into Turn 6, got into the back of an LMPC car,” said Gavin. “I had my head in my hands after that, but the team saved me, and we managed to get ourselves back on the lead lap.”

The No.4 Corvette earned a podium spot with a finish place finish in class.

The No.25 BMW was leading GTLM with two hours left but had a problem in the pits when during a tire change the rear wheels starting spinning as the new tires were going on. The issue cost the BMW team the lead and they never were quite able to seriously challenge the Corvette until the caution period at the end of the race.

Following the checkered flag, Jan Magnussen said “Well, it’s just a fantastic feeling. When you arrive at the race and the car just comes alive and you feel you have a car that you can race with, and you can attack, and you can be fast when you need to; then you’ve got to be lucky. You’ve got to stay out of trouble and run to your plan and I think everybody on the No. 3 car, the crew, the drivers and everybody just performed perfectly today. We were fast and made no mistakes and pushed when we had to and relax when we needed to.”

Ryan Brisco had the third seat on the No.3 Corvette and it was a special win today for him. “Yeah, it’s awesome. I’m so proud.” said the IndyCar driver. “There’s a lot of pressure to do my part and this team just gave us a car that was a dream to drive. We started off struggling a bit I think. The key was Friday in final practice. We really got the car dialed in and it was just so consistent through the whole race and was really, really good. I couldn’t wish for better teammates and a better team to race for.”

Corvette Racing will be back in action for the second round of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship at the 12 Hours of Sebring in March.


Source:
CorvetteRacing.com

Related:
Corvette Racing at Daytona: GTLM Pole Position for Oliver Gavin in the No.4 Corvette C7.R
Corvette Racing Links for the 2015 Rolex 24 at Daytona
Corvette Racing at Daytona: Start of a New Season