Corvette Racing: C7.Rs May Be With Us For A Little While Longer


Corvette Racing: C7.Rs May Be With Us For A Little While Longer

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

That axiom appears to be true for the Corvette Racing team, which has racked up eight GT wins out of 19 tries at Le Mans.

Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan says this year won’t be the last for the Chevy Corvette C7.R to compete, despite debuting at Le Mans and IMSA four years ago.

He believes another axiom might be true, too: You’re not getting older, you’re getting better.

“I don’t like to refer to it as an old car,” Fehan said of the C7.R during an interview with, “but it has many years of participation here at Le Mans, which is not a bad thing.”

In fact, Fehan said they went faster the night before this interview in the C7.R than ever before, “which means that development pays off. Improvement in tires, aerodynamics, chassis – all those things.”

That’s why he says he’s “not concerned” that the C7.R is getting some age and faces increasing competition from newer models.

“At the end of the day the BoP is designed to be able to level that playing field [so] I’m not concerned with the age of the car at all,” Fehan said. “Not at all. Its durability and reliability and performance have been well-proven. We feel pretty confident in bringing them out as we know they’re dependable.”

The team that spends the least amount of time in the pit box usually wins – not necessarily the fastest car, Fehan pointed out.

He believes work by Michelin developing a new tire for the C7.R’s fifth season at Le Mans is “first and foremost” behind the gains made by his team this year. “That’ll be an interesting development,” he said, “(but) we know it’s better.”

He also said the team has seen “some gains” in aerodynamics, braking, and overall handling with the chassis and is tweaking different setups, caster, amber, “getting all those things to work in unison. That’s what we’ve been working on.”

With all the rumors about the C8 possibly making its debut in 2019, Fehan played dumb, at least to the media, saying he expects to see the same C7.R version “for a while.”

“Eventually there will be an eighth-generation Corvette,” he said. “When they introduce that car, we’ll be racing it. But I don’t think that’s going to be for a while.”


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  1. Look at Aston Martin this year, fallen from grace. Ferrari is down and so is BMW. Last year Porsche was down.

  2. BoP cannot bring the C7R’s to the forefront against teams such as Porsche with their unbelievable grip from the mid engine RSR’s. Also the odds of fielding a two car team against four car teams (Ford GT, Porsche RSR) is overwhelming. Either a rule change giving Corvette the ZR1’s power, or a new C8R is needed to keep pace next season!

  3. I agree with Chuck, disagree with Ken.
    Le Mans BoP has given us different leaders and different followers.
    Leaders: this year Porsche; last year AM; before that Ford GT.
    Followers: this year BMW & AM; last year Ford GT; before that AM.
    Last minute BoP changes, with no idea what the changes would result in, are questionable to be sure.
    FIA/ACO does what it wants, when it wants, and if you want to race on the big stage, you have to put up with the nonsense.
    BoP has not been kind to Corvette for quite some time, we seem to be about 2/3 back in the pack, we all know that, albeit, through strategy we are competitive. And FIA/ACO knows that.
    Of course, and except, when FIA/ACO safety cars provide a specific manufacturer with an ‘unfair advantage’. And that’s the rub.
    It will be no different when the C8 comes out, and don’t think for a minute that Pratt & Miller doesn’t have a prototype C8 within their possession right now, with their R&D people all over it, preparing it.
    When the C8 comes out, if it proves to be too good, FIA/ACO will throttle it back, make no mistake.
    It’s not racing anymore, hasn’t been for quite some time. It’s entertainment.
    We all agree …. let’s go back to ‘run-whatcha-brung!’
    Your engineers screw up, tough, i.e., AM this year. Don’t look to FIA/ACO to help you out with BoP.
    Go back to the drafting boards, oops, sorry, old school, CAD-CAM computers and simulators, and come back with a better race car.
    In the 1949 Le Mans 24 hour race, Luigi Chinetti drove 23 of the 24 hours. No restriction, rules or regs on how long or short a driver should, could drive.
    Indy, IMSA, NASCAR, Le Mans …. how we long for the racing that was, and not the entertainment that is.
    The racing was the entertainment!

    Mike Waal
    Member: NCM, First State Corvette Club, “No” Club Corvette Group
    FSCC – Corvette Racing Activities Report
    NCCG – “No” dues, rules, regs, by-laws, officers, agenda; run-whatcha-brung!

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