Corvette Racing May Run in Both the WEC and IMSA in 2022

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Corvette Racing May Run in Both the WEC and IMSA in 2022

Photo Credits: Richard Prince for Corvette Racing


A future that’s been filled with uncertainty for Corvette Racing over the past few months could now include parallel full-season FIA World Endurance Championship and IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship programs in 2022.

That’s the latest word to Sportscar 365 from Laura Wontrop Klauser, GM’s sports car racing program manager.

A final decision will have to be made in the next few weeks. With four C8.R chassis available, Klauser says the team could “pick and choose” how to “dress them” to specifications for each program next year.

Under this scenario, Corvette Racing would be competing in both the WEC and IMSA championships. GM had earlier indicated it wants to return to WEC for at least a partial season around the 24 Hours of Le Mans, but now Sportscar 365 believes it might also expand into GM’s first full-season WEC competition with a GTE-Pro Corvette.

That would be on top of an expected full-season effort in the GTD Pro class of the WeatherTech Championship with at least one C8.R that’s been modified to fit the GT3-based ruleset of IMSA’s new category set to debut in ’22.

“I don’t think you have to rule any of those options out,” Klauser tells Sportscar 365. “We’re still working through figuring out where we’ll place cars. The good news is that we’re coming to the end of the year. There’s nothing to confirm or deny at this point. Looking at the clock ticking, we’re going to be coming to a conclusion and getting that out as soon as it makes sense.”

Fortunately, the 2022 WeatherTech Championship and WEC schedules don’t conflict, other than the joint “Super Sebring” weekend in March, so parallel competition is a real possibility.

Klauser says a move into full-season WEC competition “seems to be a potential every year,” adding that “it’s something we’ve looked at for a while. Obviously, most of these discussions were pre-me (in her current role). I wouldn’t say it’s off the table.”

Corvette Racing May Run in Both the WEC and IMSA in 2022


The key, she says, is “making sure we balance resources appropriately.”

Klauser says GM has been in “a lot of” discussions recently with WEC about the Cadillac team “because we plan to be there in 2023” and “so we’re doing a lot of investigations to understand what that means.”

But it’s “quite an undertaking” to send teams across oceans, she says, “versus just putting them on a truck and going across several states.”

Benefits of running a two-car program include having the second car do different strategies in the middle of the race, Klauser said. “You have the ability to staff appropriately for two cars, which gives you a little more leeway with people.”

At the same time, a one-car program can be successful, too, she believes.

“I don’t think there’s anything saying we have to do it one way or another,” Klauser says. “It would just come down to goals and budgets.”


Source:
sportscar365.com

Related:
Corvette Racing at VIR: Third Straight for Milner, Tandy, No. 4 C8.R
Corvette Racing at Long Beach: Another Win for No. 4 C8.R
The Corvette C8.Rs Tested GT3-Spec ABS Brakes at the Detroit Grand Prix

 



9 COMMENTS

  1. Klauser is so full of corporate speak it is hard to determine what if anything she is saying is pertinent or substantial. Nothing she said is hard evidence of anything, it’s all corporate gobbledygook and double speak. To review what Klauser said …………

    the team could “pick and choose” how to “dress them”
    “I don’t think you have to rule any of those options out,”
    “We’re still working through figuring out where we’ll place cars.”
    “The good news is that we’re coming to the end of the year.”
    “There’s nothing to confirm or deny at this point.”
    “Looking at the clock ticking, we’re going to be coming to a conclusion and getting that out as soon as it makes sense.”
    A move into full-season WEC competition “seems to be a potential every year”
    “it’s something we’ve looked at for a while. Obviously, most of these discussions were pre-me (in her current role). I wouldn’t say it’s off the table.” [So is it ON the table?]
    “making sure we balance resources appropriately.”
    GM has been in “a lot of” discussions recently with WEC
    “so we’re doing a lot of investigations to understand what that means.”
    “quite an undertaking”
    “I don’t think there’s anything saying we have to do it one way or another,”
    “It would just come down to goals and budgets.”

    So what did she say that is of substance that we can hang our hat on? NOTHING!

  2. Saw Doug and Tommy at the Michelin/NCM/Hershey Corvette Racing Dinner.
    Doug was his usual self and everyone appreciates him.
    He and Tommy didn’t let out any info either regards CR & GTD Pro.
    But they didn’t gobbledygook/double speak/corporate speak the subject either.
    Tommy said a couple of times, paraphrasing ‘I’m just a driver, I’m the last to know anything.’
    But we have to maybe feel confident[?] they are running simulations for GTD Pro
    and the GM Racing Center in the Carolinas.
    Tommy mostly talked about past, present and future LeMans and racing against
    team mates this year.
    Auction ….. was terrific. Wes Wong was able to get a Pratt Miller tour.
    I wanted that! As the bidding went on, I jumped the bid $2,000.00.
    Another person then jumped the bid $2,500.00 which was above my budget.
    The other person won.
    I did win a Corvette Racing Banner that flew at LeMans, had it signed by Doug,Tommy and Wes, Lee Willard, Cam Bower.
    Presentations by Lee and Cam were very good.
    Personally I feel bad for Klauser, as she was not responsible for the unceremonious departure of Doug. That was SO bad on the part of GM/Chev in so many ways and on so many different levels. The push-back and up-roar, well GM/Chev got the message.
    Klauser will always be known as the person who took Doug’s position, that will forever fall at her feet, especially for the way it was done. Corvette Nation was duly pissed.
    I’d like to hear more from Mark Stielow, Director of Motorsport Competition Engineering for GM Racing. Especially what is needed to get the current C8.R GTLM to GTD/GT3 specs.

  3. Great points Mike and that auction sounds like it was hopping! I also appreciate and agree with your comments on Laura Klauser. Everyone who I have talked with that knows her says she is the real deal and committed to extending Corvette Racing’s legacy. We only wish her the best with that! – Keith

  4. Not buying what she is selling! She is a bulls–t artist plain and simple. Doug should still be with the team not her.

  5. This woman is so wishy-washy with anything she says. Unable to keep it simple, direct and to the point. As a former military staff ops officer, this would be the part where I’d be saying “Enough, Lieutenant; get to the point already!”

  6. Keith, my wife & I have attended every Michelin/NCM/Hershey Corvette Racing weekend event. They are terrific.
    This year it did not have the attendance of previous years. Usually the NCM limits it to 120 people. I think they had around 80-ish. Don’t know if it was covid or the fact that this year GTLM is sorta a yawn.
    No doubt about it though; the attendees are Hard Core Corvette Racing Enthusiasts!
    Wes Wong, Bryce Burklow do a great job of organizing the event, and obtain some really great stuff to auction off. Bryce brings a small truck load of NCM Store items for sale as well. This year, in addition to the Pratt Miller Tour [which I wanted to win so bad] they had an Antonio Garcia Drivers Suit, the Corvette Racing Le Mans Banner which I won and a few other great items. The proceeds pay for the event and benefit NCM.
    Doug and Tommy have a great routine, and Lee Willard and Cam Bower put on great presentations as far as the latest and greatest from their respective companies.
    In previous years Gary Claudio, Andy Pilgrim, Lance Miller were presenters. Corvette Engineers show up, too. It is a great event.
    A lot is discussed by everyone regards the technology transfer between racing and production.
    And there are a couple of autograph sessions, some attendees bring their Corvette Racing models to have autographed. Albeit, during breaks Tommy, Doug, Lee and Cam, etc, are among the attendees answering questions and jawing Corvette Racing.

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