Late last week I got the news that Corvette Ride and Handling Engineer Jim Mero has officially retired from General Motors on September 1st after 34 years working with the automaker.
Jim not only worked with engineers to feel out the Corvettes and improve their handling, he was also the official test driver for the car and had the opportunity to drive the sports car flat out on the most challenging race tracks in North America and that one special track in Germany known as the Nurburgring.
Apparenty one of the retirement gifts that Jim received was this photo collage featuring his greatest hits! The photo collage features images of him and the team driving Corvettes on the Nurburgring and VIR, several crashes that he walked away from, and his Nurburgring ring times!
That’s right…those elusive ‘ring times, some of which have never been publically released by the Corvette team are shown on the photo collage. The photo allegedly comes from a Facebook posting from Jim’s wife Terri. Included with the three C6 Corvettes with official times that were publically released from the Corvette Team, as well as four more C7 lap times that were not publically disclosed.
The photos and lap times from the bottom row of the image collage include:
- 7:33 – C7 Corvette Stingray Z51 (S)
- 7:27 – C7 Corvette Grand Sport
- 7:26 – C6 2009 Corvette ZR1
- 7:22 – C6 2012 Corvette Z06
- 7:19 – C6 2012 Corvette ZR1
- 7:10 – C7 Corvette Z06
- 6:57 – C7 Corvette ZR1 (S)
The first and last times feature an (S) next to them and many on the Corvette Forum believe that those two lap times were calculated from the best segment times and were not from one continuous lap.
It’s really quite unbelievable in this day and age that Chevrolet hasn’t officially released the times, especially those that were generated from one continuous lap. Nurburgring lap times should be featured in the marketing of these cars and we know that the Corvette fan base would share these lap times far and wide, thereby extending the marketing reach. So there must be some underlying reason why the times have been kept internal to the Corvette team and my guess is that somewhere there is a lawyer involved…just saying!
But seriously, GM. If the C7 Corvette Z06 really ran a 7:10 at the Nurburgring – nine seconds faster than the 2012 Corvette ZR1 – and then your internal segment calculations show a sub-7:00 minute lap possible for the 2019 Corvette ZR1, my only question is what the hell are you waiting for?
[VIDEO] More Footage of the C8 Mid-Engine Corvette Flying Around the Nurburgring
[VIDEO] 2019 Corvette ZR1s at the Nurburgring
[VIDEO] Fast and Loud! Another Look at the 2018 Corvette ZR1 on the Nurburgring