CORVETTE RACING AT LE MANS: Corvettes Complete 24 Hours
Fourth, seventh place in final Le Mans for C6.R with new car looming for ‘14
LE MANS, France (June 23, 2013) – Corvette Racing and its two Compuware Corvette C6.Rs completed the most demanding auto race in the world today by finishing in the top seven of the GTE Pro class at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. Antonio Garcia, Jan Magnussen and Jordan Taylor brought home the No. 73 Compuware Corvette in fourth place after starting seventh. It was a remarkable comeback that saw the trio pick up three spots in the final six hours. The No. 74 Compuware Corvette finished seventh with Oliver Gavin, Jan Magnussen and Richard Westbrook driving.
All six drivers and the two crews weathered constantly changing conditions and 10 safety car periods – most of which required long runs behind the safety cars. No one in either garage could remember such a volatile event.
“Chevrolet was truly honored to compete in the 90th anniversary of the 24 Hours of Le Mans,” said Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. Vice President, Performance Vehicles and Motorsports. “While it certainly was a challenging 24-hour event, I am proud that the entire Corvette Racing team exhibited a ‘never give up’ approach all race long. We look forward to returning next year for the 15th time at Le Mans and our first with the next-generation Corvette race car.”
Typical Le Mans attrition began to enter the equation in the last quarter of the race. After running seventh and eighth for much of the first 18 hours, the Corvettes crept up the standings as other entries began to fall off. By the 23-hour mark, both cars ranked among the top five in the class thanks to an aggressive wet tire strategy when rain began to pelt the circuit again.
Taylor outpaced ex-F1 pilot Giancarlo Fisichella to hold on to the fourth position over the final 20 minutes. Unfortunately, Oliver Gavin had to pit the No. 74 Corvette due to an exhaust issue. Rather than risk near-certain damage, the team elected to pit and send Gavin back out for the final lap.