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The AutoGuide News Blog is your source for breaking stories from the auto industry. Delivering news immediately, the AutoGuide Blog is constantly updated with the latest information, photos and video from manufacturers, auto shows, the aftermarket and professional racing.
 |  Oct 28 2013, 1:02 PM

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Set to compete in next season’s newly formed United SportsCar Racing Series, the Corvette Racing C7.R livery have been revealed. 

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 |  Sep 17 2012, 5:33 PM

Corvette Racing capped off a very successful 2012 American Le Mans Series (ALMS) campaign with a victory at Virginia International Raceway.

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 |  Aug 26 2012, 4:01 PM

Next year, Chevrolet will celebrate the Corvette’s 60th anniversary and the famous American sports car will be the featured marque at the 2013 Rolex Monterey Motorsports Reunion at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca next August.

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 |  Jun 13 2012, 8:31 PM

Ever wonder what it takes to get ready for one of the most rigorous races in the world? Corvette Racing is releasing a five-part video series giving enthusiasts an inside look at the team as it gets ready for the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

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 |  Jul 26 2011, 1:44 AM

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The bright yellow Corvette Racing C6.Rs may have raced to victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, but the team’s efforts at home have been met with less spectacular results. To be fair, Corvette Racing cars have landed a spot on the podium twice this season, but the team has also suffered some major setbacks in other races. As perhaps a sign that Corvette Racing may reclaim some of its former glory the No. 4 car of Oliver Gavin and Jan Magnussen finally clinched the top spot on the podium at the Grand Prix of Mosport over the weekend.

A combination of hard driving, excellent pit stops and a bit of luck put the Corvette in first. Starting in just sixth position in the GT class the No. 4 Vette emerged from the pits in 3rd place after the first round of stops. With Oliver Gavin piloting the car for the first half of the race, Jan Magnussen took over, passing one of the Risi Competizione Ferrari 458 Italias near the end of the race. Then, with just laps to go, Dirk Werner, driving the No. 55 BMW was forced to pit for a stop-and-go penalty after making contact with one of the slower GTC cars, allowing Magnussen to move into first.

He held on to take the checkered flag and subsequently end BMW’s dominance in the series. “We got our first win on the board and we’ve broken BMW’s stranglehold on ALMS victories this year. I’m absolutely delighted!” said Oliver Gavin.

The No. 3 Corvette driven by Tommy Milner and Olivier Beretta managed a sixth place finish, starting 8th on the grid and eventually climbing to 4th until contact with the very gold No. 11 Porsche GTC car resulted in a spin.

The next race on the ALMS calendar is at Mid Ohio in two weeks time.

GALLERY: Corvette Racing at Grand Prix of Mosport

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GALLERY: Corvette Corral

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 |  Jun 08 2011, 11:57 AM

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This weekend’s famed 24 Hours of Le Mans race will have full coverage thanks to Speed TV and Corvette Racing. Though only 17 hours of live coverage will be done on television, Corvette Racing and Speed TV will be hosting an additional seven hours of content, including a live stream of in-car coverage from one of the Corvette Racing machines. The No. 73 Chevrolet Corvette will play host to the live stream as it seeks out its seventh class win at Le Mans.

As one of the most prestigious and demanding events in all of racing, the extensive online coverage will be commercial free and will also include links to an in-depth video tour of the legendary Le Mans circuit in the No. 74 Compuware Corvette C6.R. Undoubtedly though, the spotlight will be on drivers Olivier Beretta, Tommy Milner and Antonio Garcia as they try to get their seventh class win.

The 24 Hours of Le Mans will begin at 9:00 AM EST on Saturday. The live stream can be found at http://www.speedtv.com/corvette.

 |  Apr 27 2011, 9:57 AM

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Corvette Racing’s 2011 season rolls on and with it the latest installment of season two of the Track to Street series. In Episode 4 the team heads to the Long Beach Grand Prix, a treacherous street circuit where you’re lucky to escape with a functioning car. And with the 24 Hours of Le Mans race next on the schedule, Corvette Racing was eager to keep its cars intact.

For all the videos subscribe to Chevy‘s YouTube channel here and while you’re at it, sign up to AutoGuide’s YouTube channel too.

 

 

 |  Jul 20 2010, 4:30 PM

Corvette Racing’s Youtube series continues for yet another episode, but this time, goes behind the scenes to look at the logistics of bringing the team over to France, weeks ahead of the LeMans race, just to prepare for 24 hours of wheel to wheel action.

The most interesting aspect of the video is how things like food are dealt with by the team. Believe it or not, one of the staffers here has experience cooking for large groups of people at a summer camp, and it was one of the most demanding jobs on his resume (somewhere between automotive journalist and State Fair carny – but that’s another story). At a summer camp, the young campers are far less picky, but a race team is not only used to decent quality food (especially the mega-buck sponsors), but nutritional requirements are extremely important for the pro drivers, who operate like athletes of the highest caliber.

Along the way, we also see the drivers parade, the autograph sessions but no on-car action. Hopefully episode 8 will deliver the goods with a roaring V8 soundtrack and more exotic locales.

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 |  Jul 16 2010, 11:15 AM

Episode 6 of the Corvette Racing Series is the big one; the team gets ready for the 24 Hours of LeMans race, a mere two days after their Laguna Seca event.

Having to assemble and ship 14 tons of gear on 48 hours is no easy feat, but couple that with having to win the world’s most grueling sports car race, and commemorate the 5oth anniversary of the Corvette’s LeMans debut, and you have a recipe for high stress.

Just as you would expect, some high drama does occur, but the Corvette squad does an admirable job of dealing with the various crises thrown their way.

See the full video after the jump:

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 |  Jun 17 2010, 12:58 PM

Danish racing driver Jan Magnussen, best known for his work as a factory driver for Corvette Racing in the ALMS and 24 Hours of Le Mans, is scheduled to join fellow Scandinavian Mattias Ekstrom at the upcoming NASCAR Sprint Cup race at Infineon Raceway. We’re not sure what’s behind the Viking invasion of NASCAR these days, but we suspect it may have something to do with Hagar The Horrible.

According to Magnussen, “It feels great. I have always wanted to try NASCAR and I am very grateful to Phoenix Racing for giving me the chance.” The Dane will be driving the No. 9 car for Phoenix Racing.

“We are thrilled to have a driver of his caliber to drive for us at Sonoma. Jan has tested NASCAR Sprint Cup cars before and his CV speaks for itself. He is going to give us a chance not only to quality good, but to be in the top fight,” said Phoenix Racing team boss James Finch.

The NASCAR race at Infineon Raceway in Sonoma, California takes place this weekend (June 19/20).

[Source: TouringCarTimes]

 |  Jun 13 2010, 8:58 PM

When the clock struck 12 today at Le Circuit de La Sarthe, Audi took home a stunning sweep of the podium at this year’s running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. With the Peugeot 908′s showing considerably more pace during qualifying, not even Audi Motorsports boss Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich would have predicted a 1-2-3 finish for their R15 TDI diesel-powered LMP1 machines.

According to Ullrich, “At the beginning it was a little unlucky for us but at the end it all worked fine. It’s a great reward for all the work that everyone [at Audi Motorsports] has done. I think this has to be the hardest Le Mans we’ve ever done.”

Dr. Ullrich was congratulated by his counterpart at Peugeot, Director of Motorsport Olivier Quesnel, straight after the race. Ullrich returned the favor by paying tribute to Audi’s arch rival Peugeot by remarking on the camararderie between the two teams. “In sport when someone wins then someone else loses, but when the loser comes and congratulates the winner it is all very sporting. That is what we did last year and that’s what Peugeot has done this year. It has been a fantastic battle, we’ve invited the Peugeot guys to a party tonight and we hope that  they will all come”.

For Audi this is their 9th victory at Le Mans, tying them with Ferrari as the second winningest team in history (Porsche having 16 wins to their name). The winning #9 Audi, driven by Mike Rockenfeller, Romain Dumas and Timo Bernhard, also set a new distance record by completing 397 laps at an average speed of 225.228 km/h.

This was also Michelin’s 19th Le Mans victory and the 27th time the race has been won by a German car.

Results from LMP2, GT1 and GT2 after the jump:

[Source: lemans.org]

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 |  May 25 2010, 7:17 AM

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Ron Fellows may have retired from full-time racing duties with Corvette Racing and the American Le Mans Series, but he proved this weekend that he’s still the Mayor of Mosport in a Corvette.

The Mississauga, Ontario native and Corvette Racing legend has always been hard to beat around his home track, Mosport International Raceway, so it should come as no surprise that he claimed the top step on the podium during Sunday’s World Challenge event from behind the wheel of the Carlisle Companies/Cragar Wheels Chevrolet Corvette. The win didn’t come easy though, starting 2nd to Randy Pobst in the K-Pax Volvo S60 and having been passed off the start by Kuno Wittmer’s Dodge Viper.

Fellows quickly battled back against Wittmer, passing his fellow Canadian in Turn 10 before turning his sights on race leader Pobst. Running down the K-Pax Volvo, Fellows turned a record fastest race lap of 1:23.828 (105.602 mph), a feat that thrilled the hometown crowd. On lap 15, Fellows and Pobst went side-by-side down the front straight and through Turn 1, splitting the Touring Car Mazda RX-8 of Eric Meyer between Turns 1 and 2. Fellows managed to take the inside line for the downhill left hander and slowly pulled away from Pobst from that point on.

According to Fellows, ”I got a terrible start, but other than that it was just a matter of being patient. Even though I hadn’t raced here much lately, it comes back to you. To be honest, the slick conditions may have helped. I was hoping it stayed overcast, but our car is lighter than the Volvos and that was probably better. It was a lot of fun, and feels good.”

Having spent the day before at Laguna Seca for Corvette Racing’s 50th anniversary of racing at Le Mans, Fellows’ win at Mosport might not have happened if he’d missed his connecting flight from San Francisco to Toronto, having literally made the connection with 3 minutes to spare. As Fellows reported on his personal website, he was very pleased to have been able to race at Mosport on this historic weekend for Corvette Racing and because he hadn’t raced at his home track since 2007.

Pobst’s runner-up finish in the Volvo, combined with his Saturday race win at Mosport, extended his point lead to 47 over Wittmer and the Dodge Motorsports Viper (541 to 494), followed by Crescentini in the Centric Parts/Stoptech/GMG Porsche 911 GT3 (420), Andy Pilgrim (383) and Daskalos in his Daskalos Developments Dodge Viper (379). Volvo also extended its point lead in the Manufacturers’ Championship to seven (35 to 28) over Porsche. Dodge is third with 26.

[Sources: World Challenge, Ron Fellows]

 |  May 17 2010, 3:18 PM

Corvette Racing 2010 Long Beach ALMS

If you’ve ever heard the Chevrolet Corvette ALMS car, you’ll know that they are far and away the loudest, most evil sounding cars in the field, an impressive feat when you’re competing against Porsche 911s, Aston Martins and open-cockpit prototypes. For a car that sounds like Armageddon, one would expect that being green isn’t exactly a priority, but the latest episode of the Corvette Racing Series shows that the team can find ways to go fast and back up their green credentials. Using little tricks like ceramic wheel bearings, lower rolling resistance tires and lightweight body panels, the ‘Vettes are able to go faster with less fuel, which is the same logic behind Porsche’s 911 GT3R Hybrid,

Coincidentally, the road-going Corvette delivers very respectable fuel economy numbers, especially considering the massive V8s used in them. Sadly, the old dogmatic meme of a gas-guzzling V8 refuses to die.

[Source: Chevrolet]

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 |  Apr 14 2010, 11:56 AM

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Corvette Racing has just released the next (and third) installment of its 12-part video series, this time examining how race technology makes its way to the street. In particular, the latest video highlights the new Z06 Carbon edition, which gets plenty of light-weight carbon fiber add-ons to help it shave off weight and run a quicker lap time – by as much as 3 seconds a lap on a track like Laguna Seca.

The “Track to Street” philosophy is even more important in 2010, considering the new GT class Corvette race cars are now significantly more like the street cars than in the past.

Check out the video after the jump and we’ll be sure to bring you the next update in the series, as we hope to learn more about the new 5.5-liter V8 race engine and its street-car application.

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 |  Mar 12 2010, 5:26 PM

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Corvette Racing has just released the first part of a 12 part series, chronicling the team’s build up and follow-through for the 2010 American Le Mans Series. The first video in the series doesn’t waste any time dealing with Corvette Racing’s crushing finale at Laguna Seca, where contact by one of the Flying Lizard Porsches sent driver Jan Magnussen into the wall, just seconds from the finish line. (see below).

Crew Chief Dan Binks expresses his anger, but says that the best way to avoid that situation in the future is to build a car that’s so far out front, this problem won’t occur. Corvette thinks they’ve got such a car, but this year the competition is even tougher, with the GT1 and GT2 classes amalgamated into a single GT class. Plus, for 2010 (like in 2009) the new C6.R is much more closely based on the street car and new for 2010 is a smaller 5.5-liter V8 engine.

We’ll be sure to keep an eye on how the new car stacks up, with the 2010 ALMS Season beginning with the 12 Hours of Sebring, March 17-20.

See after the jump for a video of last year’s season ending crash.

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 |  Mar 08 2010, 11:19 AM

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With the start of the 2010 American Le Mans Series (ALMS) just around the corner, Corvette Racing has announced a new 12-part video series that will take an in-depth look at the new car, while following the team’s season this year.

Each of the videos will be posted on the Corvette Facebook page, starting with this first trailer. Over the past decade, Corvette Racing has been a dominant player in the GT1 category, switching to GT2 last year after there was really no one left to race against. For 2010 the GT1 and GT2 classes have been joined to form a single GT class and the racing will be ultra-competitive with Ferraris, Porsches and numerous other exotics looking to take the win in each and every race.

For 2010 (like in 2009) the new C6.R is much more closely based on the street car and new for 2010 is a smaller 5.5-liter V8 engine.

The 2010 ALMS Season begins with the 12 Hours of Sebring, March 17-20.

GALLERY: 2010 Corvette C6.R

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 |  Feb 25 2010, 1:21 PM

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Corvette Racing has just released the first official photos of its new GT Class (formerly GT2) C6.R team, with new livery for 2010. The teams consist of Corvette Racing drivers Johnny O’Connell, Jan Magnussen, and Antonio Garcia in the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R, while Oliver Gavin, Olivier Beretta, and Emmanuel Collard will pilot the No. 4 car. All drivers have been testing the cars this week at Sebring International Raceway in Florida.

Along with new livery, the car’s have a new 5.5-liter V8 that many expect will be the new base engine in the next generation (C7) Corvette. Last year Corvette Racing only ran a partial season in the new GT (then GT2 Class) cars, using a downsized 6.0-liter version of the old GT1 Class 7.0-liter V8.

The 2010 ALMS Season begins with the 12 Hours of Sebring, March 17-20.

GALLERY: 2010 Corvette Racing C6.R

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Official release after the jump:

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 |  Jan 04 2010, 10:22 AM

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Corvette Racing boss Doug Fehan has confirmed that when the team of GT2-spec Vettes debut for their first full season at Sebring in March, they will be equipped with an all-new, smaller V8 engine. Gone is the 6.0-liter V8 from last year, which Fehan said was just an temporary engine. That motor, essentially a donwsized version of the GT1-spec 7.0-liter V8, had very little in common with the street-going Corvette’s V8.

This new 5.5-liter V8, however, is expected to be in many ways similar to a production V8 that will find its way into the next generation C7 Corvette. In fact, it will be built alongside engines for the ZR1 and Z06 at GM’s Performance Build Center.

We’ll be watching the new GT2 Corvettes closely during the 2010 American Le Mans Series (ALMS) season, in articular during their race debut at the 12 Hours of Sebring running from March 17-20.

GALLERY: Corvette Racing ALMS GT2 Cars

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Official release after the jump:

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 |  Oct 14 2009, 11:54 AM

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Corvette Racing driver Jan Magnussen almost saw the top of the podium during the American Le Mans Series finale at Laguna Seca, but instead he saw the track-side hospital. Magnussen, driving the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R spent the last several laps of the race battling alonside Jörg Bergmeister in the Flying Lizard Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, before crashing into the wall just feet from the finish line, allowing the Porsche to finish first just 1.037 seconds ahead. (Skip ahead to the 1:52 mark for the best action).

Magnussen even took the lead several in the second last lap, but had to give the position back as it was determined (quite obviously) that he had passed over the pit-exit line to do so.

“I’m definitely sorry Jan went into the wall,” Bergmeister said. “I didn’t want that to happen. But it was a banging game. I’m glad he’s OK. It was tough racing. The Corvette passed me the first time at the hairpin but he went in way too deep and I was able to get back around him. He was a little quicker I have to say. I wasn’t trying to figure out where he was gaining time on me. I was trying to stay on track and in front.”

Magnussen recalls the incident slightly differently. “I didn’t think I even had a chance after I had to give the position back,” he said. “Going into the last corner I was too far away to make a proper attack, but Joerg parked the car. I didn’t see that, so I slid up and hit him a little – he went sideways and I managed to get on the inside. It was a drag race up the hill, and I managed to get ahead of him. Then he turned me into the wall, and he kept turning in. Then I spun around the nose of his car.”

Corvette Racing is looking into the incident but it’s hard to point fingers as there was a lot of bumping going on in the final laps of the race. “It’s unfortunate it ended the way it did. I think we’re going to review the videotapes and see what we can do to ascertain what went wrong there,” said Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan. “I’m sure we’ll be working with the sanctioning body to address it and put into place safeguards to make sure incidents like this won’t happen again.”

Still, Fehan had to admit that, “Those last six laps were as exciting as I’ve seen in motor racing in a long time – two great teams, two great cars, two great drivers.”

The podium spot is the fifth consecutive podium for Corvette Racing in as many races, since the team joined the GT2 class.

[Source: Corvette Racing and ALMS]

 |  Aug 04 2009, 10:17 PM

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Corvette Racing today unveiled its new GT2-spec C6.R racer and invited folks to listen in on a conference call with those responsible for running the team as well as one of the drivers of the No. 3 car, Johnny O’Connell.

For years Corvette Racing has ran a team of cars in the top-level GT1 category in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) and at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, but decided to move to the lower GT1 class for several reasons, namely the competition and the marketing potential. For starters, the GT2-spec C6.R is closely based on the new ZR1, whereas the old GT1 cars had little in common with their road-going counterparts. Being so closely related to a street car is ideal for marketing.

“With the international regulations converging around a single GT class, Corvette Racing will continue its motorsports heritage by racing against manufacturers and marques that Corvette competes with in the marketplace, while also increasing the production content of the C6.R race car and the relevance of racing to our customers,” said Mark Kent, GM Racing manager. “This is truly a step that positions Corvette Racing for the future of production-based sports car racing worldwide, and a move that is perfectly aligned with GM’s marketing and business objectives in racing.”

As for the competition, the GT1 class has heated up over the past few years. Traditionally dominated by Porsche, Ferrari is now a major contender. Additional players include BMW, Aston Martin and Panoz. Competition on GT1 is almost non-existent now as Corvette Racing has developed into such a dominating sport over the years (beating Ferrari, Aston Martin, Saleen and Dodge).

“There was literally very little competition on a global basis to race in the existing GT1 category,” said Doug Fehan, Corvette Racing program manager.

As for the cars themselves, they will be much closer to the street legal ZR1 in both appearance and makeup. Using a production aluminum frame (as opposed to a steel one like in the GT1 cars), this new C6.R will share identical proportions with the ZR1, with the lone exception being flared fenders. The front splitter and rear wing will also be much smaller, decreasing downforce considerably. And whereas the GT1 car used carbon ceramic brakes, the new GT2 car will have to make due with steel ones.

Under the hood, Corvette Racing has modified the 7.0-liter GT1 powerplant, adding a new crankshaft to decrease the displacement to 6.o-liters (as the rules demand). A new engine is also in development for 2010 when the rules change to limit the maximum displacement to 5.5-liters. According to Fehan this new engine will be based on a production 5.5-liter V8 that is planned for future GM products. The Corvette Racing GT2-spec C6.R will make its racing debut at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 6-8. Familiar faces Johnny O’Connell and Jan Magnussen will share the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R, and Oliver Gavin and Olivier Beretta will drive the No. 4 Compuware Corvette C6. R.

GALLERY: GT2 Corvette C6.R

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 |  Jul 14 2009, 5:50 PM

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Last year Chevrolet announced that it would retire its GT1 Corvette Racing team after dominating the class for close to a decade. In its place Chevy would run a lower-level GT2 team in a class that has become increasingly competitive.

This year the GT1s still ran in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) during the season opener at Sebring and then at Long Beach before heading off to France to compete at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. There the team did Corvette Racing justice, taking the top spot on the podium in the last race the GT1 C6Rs would ever see. It also marked an astounding six class wins at Le Mans for Corvette Racing.

Now Corvette Racing has announced plans to return to the series on August 6th at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course. Two cars will take to the field to battle it out with Ferraris, Porsches and Vipers. Both cars will be piloted by familiar drivers, with Johnny O’Connell and Jan Magnussen forming one team and Olivier Beretta and Oliver Gavin forming the other.

“For several years now, the competition in GT2 has been the closest and most competitive among all our classes,” said ALMS CEO Scott Atherton. “With the news of Corvette Racing’s official entry into the category at Mid-Ohio, the class quite possibly becomes the most diverse and competitive ever. It also serves as another example of the continued growth and success of the American Le Mans Series. Corvette never truly left, but it’s safe to say that they were missed by the countless participants at our Corvette Corrals and fans worldwide. We would like to be the first to officially say, ‘Welcome back!’”

The two car Corvette Racing GT2 team will race for the first time at Mid-Ohio from August 6-8th.

[Source: American Le Mans Series]