Corvette Racing at VIR: Still in the Running for GTLM Titles

  • Aug 23, 2015
  • Pratt Miller

Reading Time: 4 minutes

Hard-fought, GT-only race in team’s eighth TUDOR Championship event

DANVILLE, Va. (Aug. 23, 2015) – Corvette Racing remains in the hunt for the GT Le Mans (GTLM) championship in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship following the Oak Tree Grand Prix on Sunday at Virginia International Raceway.

With two races remaining in the season, the two Corvette C7.Rs are embroiled in a tough fight for the GTLM Manufacturer, Driver and Team championships. Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen in the No. 3 Chevrolet Corvette C7.R stand second in Driver points after their sixth-place finish at VIR. The pairing won the first two races of the season at Daytona and Sebring. Oliver Gavin and Tommy Milner placed eighth in GTLM with their No. 4 Corvette C7.R after running as high as fourth mid-race on pace. The car had to stop on the final lap for a late splash of fuel.

Sunday’s results place Chevrolet third in the GTLM Manufacturer standings with 70 points remaining in the final two events.

Magnussen and Gavin were strong early. Magnussen picked up a spot at the start around Bill Auberlen with Gavin trying to follow through. He used a draft and strong braking from the No. 4 Corvette to gain a position as the three cars ran within a second for a handful of laps. Gavin took control of the position at the 35-minute mark when Auberlen spun trying to get inside of Magnussen at the first turn.

For the rest of the opening stint, the Corvette C7.Rs ran by themselves. Gavin and the No. 4 Corvette was the first of the team cars to pit at the 49-minute mark for fuel, four Michelin tires and a driver change to Milner. Magnussen followed two laps later and handed over to Garcia.

Trouble found Garcia just shy of the 65-minute mark with a brief power loss heading onto the long backstraight. A system reset brought the Corvette C7.R back to life and full power. Despite maximum effort by the team, Garcia and Magnussen finished their race in the same position they started.

Milner showed good pace while racing at his home track. In his double-stint, he climbed to fourth place after the No. 4 Corvette started seventh in class. He and Gavin were looking for their second victory at VIR with Corvette Racing.

The next race for Corvette Racing is the Lone Star Le Mans at 11:35 p.m. CT on Saturday, Sept. 19 from Circuit of The Americas in Austin, Texas. The race will air live on FOX Sports 2 at 12:30 p.m. ET with a replay on FOX Sports 1 scheduled for 1:30 p.m. ET on Sunday, Sept. 20.

ANTONIO GARCIA, NO. 3 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – FINISHED SIXTH: “We needed a perfect race in order to score maximum points, and we were doing fairly well with that until the power loss. Jan did a great job at the start to gain a position. I’m not really sure what happened when I slowed, but fortunately I was able to reset the system. It put us in a difficult spot to try and recover. At this moment we simply do not have the performance of the other cars in our class to challenge for meaningful points. That is a very frustrating position for everyone on the Corvette Racing team, which is giving a great effort.”

JAN MAGNUSSEN, NO. 3 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – FINISHED SIXTH: “It was a good run. I had a decent run and gained a spot. We were able to hold that spot but didn’t really have anything for the guys ahead of us. I had a little bit of oversteer but the crew and engineers made it better for Antonio. It was good to hold the 25 BMW behind us during that time.”

OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 4 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – FINISHED EIGHTH: “It was gentle start; no one was going too crazy. I had to fend Bryan (Sellers) off in the Falken car, and after that I caught up Bill (Auberlen) and Jan (Magnussen). We quickly realized it was going to be between the three of us for those positions. I got around Bill going into Turn 14 with a good draft and hard braking. He got around a few laps later at Turn 1 with a good run – we already had a little contact earlier. We were able to catch up before it looked like Bill tried to pass Jan at the same place but went around and I was able to avoid him. The important thing was that we try to help the No. 3 car guys out in the championship.”

TOMMY MILNER, NO. 3 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R – FINISHED EIGHTH: “The middle part of the race was quite good for us. We had a couple of good pit stop executions and were leading the second wave of GTLM cars for awhile. I had a small spin but nothing major. My only chance to catch the BMW was at the start of that second stint. I was driving as hard as I could but got caught out. With the current performance levels in our class, it was tough to make up any ground – much less a position. We’ll move on to Austin and give it our best shot.”


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