|SEBRING, Fla. (Nov. 14, 2020) – Corvette Racing endured a tough close to its championship-winning season at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring on Saturday, but it ended 2020 with a tremendous level of success in the first year of the mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette C8.R.|
A pair of suspension issues relegated the two Mobil 1/SiriusXM Corvette C8.Rs to fifth- and sixth-place finishes in the final race of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. It didn’t take anything away from the program’s achievement of sweeping the full-season GT Le Mans (GTLM) class championships: Manufacturers title for Chevrolet, Drivers Championship for Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor, and Team title for the No. 3 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Chevrolet Corvette C8.R.
Corvette Racing ended the season with six wins, seven pole positions and six fastest GTLM race laps, including Nicky Catsburg on Saturday in the No. 3 Corvette.
In addition, the No. 4 Corvette C8.R pairing of Oliver Gavin – who made his final start as a full-season Corvette Racing competitor – and Tommy Milner finished third in the final GTLM Drivers points standings.
Both Corvettes showed good pace early in the 12 Hours before misfortune struck the No. 4 C8.R of Oliver Gavin, Tommy Milner and Marcel Fässler. A water leak in the third hour set back Gavin – making his final full-season start with the team – by six laps. Things didn’t improve with a suspension issue just past the halfway mark that sent the No. 4 Corvette back to the garage with damage. But instead of giving up, the No. 4 team worked quickly to replace the damaged components and had the car back on-track with 3:30 to go.
For most of the day, it looked like the No. 3 Corvette of Garcia, Taylor and Catsburg was the car to beat in class. Garcia began from pole position, and the C8.R led seven times. The No. 3 team came back from fifth near the four-hour mark and to the lead within the next hour thanks to some solid laps, a great pitstop and some luck with a full-course yellow with about three hours to go.
Garcia was running second when he experienced a problem at the left-rear of the Corvette in a similar spot as the No. 4 C8.R’s issues. The Corvette Racing crew did its homework, however, and had Garcia back in the race after just 15 minutes following repairs in its garage.
Corvette Racing will open its 2021 season with the Rolex 24 At Daytona on Jan. 30-31.