Corvette Racing at COTA: More Lessons Learned with Corvette C8.R


Corvette Racing at COTA: More Lessons Learned with Corvette C8.R

Magnussen, Rockenfeller complete trouble-free run at Six Hours of COTA

AUSTIN, Texas (February 23, 2020) – Corvette Racing ran another trouble-free event in the second race for the new Chevrolet Corvette C8.R on Sunday with a sixth-place class finish in the FIA World Endurance Championship’s Six Hours of COTA at Circuit of The Americas.

Jan Magnussen and Mike Rockenfeller, each making their first starts in the mid-engine No. 63 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Corvette C8.R, completed 170 laps for 570 miles in the highly competitive GTE Pro category. Despite lacking the same outright performance as the other manufacturer teams in the class, the Corvette Racing program still went away from the weekend with a significant amount of data and notes that will be applied to the C8.R ahead of its next event at Sebring International Raceway in March.

Sunday’s run was in addition to a successful debut for the Corvette C8.R in the Rolex 24 At Daytona where the No. 3 Corvette completed more laps and miles than any previous Corvette in race history.


On Sunday, Magnussen drove the first two stints in the car and was able to overtake two cars in his opening run. He drove more than an hour in each of his stints before handing over to Rockenfeller, making his first appearance at the COTA circuit. He drove the middle three stints before Magnussen closed the race with the final run in the Corvette.

Neither driver made a mistake on track, and the Corvette Racing pit work turned in its usual exemplary performance. That provided program engineers ample data to study with the aim of contending for victory at upcoming races in both the FIA World Endurance Championship and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Fuel usage, engine and tire performance, and chassis settings were among the many areas where the team will further study and dissect data.

Corvette Racing will compete in both series at the upcoming Super Sebring weekend March 20-21 – the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring for IMSA and the 1,000 Miles of Sebring for FIA WEC.



“Obviously we were very far off the pace, but we have learned and taken things away from this experience with the new Corvette. For sure we were down on power but there are other areas where we can improve. In a race like this, you have a chance to play around a little bit with different setups and you can try some different things… look at what other teams are doing, how the other cars are handling, where they are strong and where we need to be stronger. As tough as this race was, I’m excited for Sebring. It should be better with the things we’ve taken away from this weekend.”


“I think it was good first experience for me to be in the new Corvette. It was first time at COTA so obviously a lot of new things to learn. The C8.R ran pretty well. There were no issues technically. I’m sure operationally, it is always a new rhythm so that is why we are happy to do these WEC races to get up to speed again. Here and there we can improve. I’m sure we will make improvements and we will make a step for Sebring. Obviously we were lacking pace; that was quite obvious the two days. There was not much we could do. We did everything we could. We tried to learn. We tried to do different things in the race. We tried to stretch fuel in the stints and we did one stop less so that was good. Clearly we need more pace for Sebring, and I am looking forward to that. I don’t think there was too much negative except obviously not the result we were aiming for. But the goal was not to win the race, it was really was to go through to see where we can improve and then at Sebring see if we have a shot.”

Corvette Rac‌ing

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Corvette Racing at COTA: Next Steps in Corvette C8.R Development



  1. What is the size, estimated horse power and is the engine normally asperated that they are running in the cars?

  2. The C8.R has a 5.5L DOHC NA V8 with a flat-plane crank. The C8 has a 6.2L LT2 OHV NA V8 with a cross-plane crank. Both the C8.R and street variant have an output of approx 500bhp.

  3. I was at the COTA race and was pleased with the C8.R’s performance. Obviously, it would have been nice to win the class, but that was not realistic. This is a brand new car (not the same car as was raced at Daytona), with new drivers to the C8 (although experienced in the earlier Corvette race cars) who had never even driven the car before COTA, entered in a race series that was halfway through its season (this was the 8th race of the FIA’s WEC series for this season) with the other teams having already had 7 races to sort out their cars and teams. I think it was an amazing accomplishment that the team maintained their starting position throughout most of the race and actually finished one position higher (18th overall and 6th in class) after one of the Porsche’s had to go into the garage with mechanical issues in the latter 3rd of the race and could not recover the lost garage time, in addition to being able to complete the race with one less pit stop than the rest of their class. That says loads about the reliability of the car and the team’s performance first time out. They need to find more speed (they were about 2 seconds off the pace of their class), but that will come with more time on the track.

    As a side note, I have never before seen some many people at a race wearing Corvette swag. The C8.R really has the faithful fired up!

    Great job, Team Corvette! We’ve got your back!

  4. I am disappointed with the new Corvette and the team. The Porsche team is working with a 95% new car and is doing as well as they did last year. I don’t get it at all! Their seems
    to be a lack of power that is the major factor in this situation. Come on Chevy, I’m not giving up on you, lets get this thing moving!

  5. This new mid-engine C8.R is so far just a big disappointment. It doesn’t convince at all and didn’t have a decisive role in this race at any time. And neither in Daytona.

  6. I would be lying if I said I was not disappointed over the car’s performance, despite showing good pace at Daytona. After all, Porsche came out with a new car, and they were contenders right off the bat. As much as I love Corvette Racing (I’ll always be a fan), the truth of the matter is that this is nothing more than an advertising exercise for GM, while groups like Porsche and Aston Martin race in GT to do one thing: to win. Period.

    New car / BoP crap aside, the team needs to step up. This car has been testing since 2018. This is the top tier of sports car racing, so there is no excuse. Either Pratt & Miller needs to up their game, or GM needs to source another racing outfit to bring this team to the front where it belongs. There also MUST be customer C8.Rs in the field.

    I do remain optimistic that they’re doing this race and the Sebring WEC event to get a favorable BoP for LeMans. Let’s all forget this most recent weekend…it was painful to see the lack of pace. Finishing at nearly the tail end of the field on home turf is nothing to be proud of.

    I know that these are growing pains, so we need to be patient. Keep the faith, everyone!!

  7. I too was disappointed in the first two races ….if the rear engine platform was so great the handling would outweigh the power loss and we woulda seen the C8R making ground in the corners and gettin passed in the straits…. but we didn’t instead it finished a lap down while the front engine cars were kicking it…i bet the C8R woulda done better…it certainly sounds better

  8. This is very cool. Here’s a brand new car. Chassis stiffness and suspension and when and how the power comes on in relationship to these things in the turns are huge and focusing on these areas and anything at all in reliability all will come in to make this a better car as time goes on. Being down on power is something that can be attended to as well. Keeping the charge cool and things like that. The point is, that the focus is on improvement of the car. And that is what counts with this fan!

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