|CORVETTE RACING AT SEBRING: Garcia Leads Corvette 1-2 Milner second in ultra-close GTLM qualifying between two Corvette C8.Rs|
|SEBRING, Fla. (March 19, 2021) – Antonio Garcia put Corvette Racing on the GT Le Mans (GTLM) pole position Friday for the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Advance Auto Parts as the team looks to continue its strong opening to the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.|
Garcia, driving the No. 3 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Chevrolet Corvette C8.R, set a GTLM record with a 1:54.910 (117.169 mph) around the 3.74-mile, 17-turn circuit for Saturday’s race in central Florida. He was a sliver quicker – by just 0.034 seconds – than teammate Tommy Milner in the No. 4 Corvette. His time was a 1:54.944 (117.135 mph).
Garcia was the GTLM pole-winner for November’s rescheduled 2020 Sebring 12 Hours, and he shared the GTLM Drivers Championship with teammate Jordan Taylor. The pairing, along with Nicky Catsburg, won the Rolex 24 At Daytona to open the 2021 season.
Milner, Nick Tandy and Alexander Sims were second at the Rolex but were the GTLM pole-sitters there. Milner also won a two-hour, 40-minute sprint race at Sebring in July with Oliver Gavin.
Corvette Racing and Chevrolet sit 1-2 in the early-season GTLM points standings. The No. 3 Corvette group leads over the No. 4 C8.R in full-season points, but the positions are switched in the Michelin Endurance Cup. The four-race championship is made of IMSA’s four long-distance races with Milner, Tandy and Sims claiming the most points at the pre-determined marks of the Rolex 24. Sebring serves as the second round of the MEC.
All signs point toward Corvette Racing contending for its 13th victory at Sebring International Raceway and 12th in the annual 12-hour enduro. The program’s last two Rolex 24 victories in 2015 and 2016 led to race wins at Sebring only weeks later.
The mid-engine C8.R and Corvette Stingray street car were developed simultaneously, and the race car and production vehicle share more technology and parts than any previous-generation Corvette. When initial Corvette C8.R design and development work began more than six years ago, Corvette Racing engineers worked closely alongside Corvette production personnel with a heavy emphasis on wind tunnel and simulation testing.
The Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. ET on Saturday. The race will air on NBCSN from 10 a.m.-noon and 7-10:30 p.m. ET. The full race will be streamed on TrackPass via NBC Sports Gold and the NBC Sports App. IMSA Radio will air full qualifying and race coverage at IMSA.comalong with Sirius 216, XM 392 and SiriusXM Online 992.
|TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R – QUALIFIED SECOND IN GTLM: “We can’t be unhappy with first and second. To be that close and not having scored a pole in IMSA competition is frustrating! But the cars were obviously super-quick today. The competition is also close, too. It looks like we will have a pretty tough race tomorrow. It’s tough no matter what at Sebring, but when you have three other cars that are going to be competitive for the whole race, that makes it trickier. We still have a little work to do with car setup and get it as good as we can for the whole 12 hours. We’re starting from a good spot in terms of position on the track but from a comfort standpoint, we’re in a good place too. We’ll do a little more in the warmup, and we have 12 hours to make little tweaks and tunes as we need.”EVOLUTION OF C8.R FROM FIRST TIME AT SEBRING IN 2020: “It’s hard to compare to our first time here. Every time we go to the track, the guys are taking lessons from data and from the simulator to improve things. If we went back to exactly how we ran for the first time here in February of last year, I’m sure the cars would feel significantly different. It’s being refined and evolving over time. Certainly we are going in the right direction.”|