Gavin within 0.6 seconds of teammate in hard-fought Rolex 24 qualifying
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (Jan. 24, 2019) – Corvette Racing’s Jan Magnussen qualified second Thursday in GT Le Mans (GTLM) for Saturday’s Rolex 24 At Daytona ahead of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s opening race.
Driving with Antonio Garcia and Mike Rockenfeller, Magnussen set a lap of 1:42.583 (124.927 mph) in the No. 3 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Chevrolet Corvette C7.R. Magnussen and Garcia won the 2017 and 2018 GTLM Driver’s championships and were victorious at the Rolex 24 in 2015.
Oliver Gavin qualified the No. 4 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Chevrolet Corvette C7.R ninth in class and only 0.6 seconds behind his teammate. Gavin, who set a lap of 1:43.239 (124.133 mph), is aiming to repeat his 2016 Rolex 24 class victory with teammates Tommy Milner and Marcel Fässler.
As was the case in Rolex 24 qualifying last year – and earlier this month in official testing – the pair of yellow Corvettes opted to use a drafting strategy around the superspeedway portion of Daytona International Speedway. Different this time is that other teams followed Corvette Racing’s lead during Thursday’s session.
This year’s Rolex 24 is the 20th anniversary of Corvette Racing’s competitive debut. The program starts its third decade in search of its 13th Driver and Manufacturer title in 21 years of racing in IMSA, along with a fourth victory at the Rolex 24.
The 57thRolex 24 At Daytona is the start of the 2019 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season and begins at 2:35 p.m. ET on Saturday, Jan. 26. It will air on live on NBCSN and the NBC Sports app starting at 2 p.m. ET on Saturday. NBCSN also will air qualifying live at 3 p.m. ET on Thursday, January 24. Live audio coverage of practice, qualifying and the race from IMSA Radio is available on IMSA.com.
JAN MAGNUSSEN, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – QUALIFIED SECOND IN GTLM:
“I suppose it was an OK result. Had it been a little cleaner, maybe I could have gone quicker. But three-and-a-half tenths is quite a lot. I’m happy with the lap but it was not clean. I had to fend off one of the Porsches starting the lap and then had to pass Oliver during the lap as he had just done his fastest; he let me by but I still had to pass. We didn’t quite hit the tow we had planned and how we wanted. But the Corvette was good and the time itself was good considering how messy of a lap it was. I’m quite happy with the car we have for the race. But this is about qualifying first, and we didn’t.”
OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – QUALIFIED NINTH IN GTLM:
“We have been battling grip level since the start of today, and qualifying was no different. We are not entirely sure why we are getting very low bite from the tire. We tried to our tow strategy but things got a bit messy. After that the speed just wasn’t there for us. I’m not entirely sure why. The tire pressures were split which was a bit unusual, so maybe that was part of it. The track also is very different from the test earlier this month. We have a couple more sessions to work on a few things, so I’m confident the guys at Corvette Racing will come through.”
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