CORVETTE RACING AT LIME ROCK: Taylor Leads Corvette Sweep
Milner second in GTLM qualifying as rain looms for Saturday’s all-GT race
LAKEVILLE, Conn. (July 16, 2021) – Jordan Taylor claimed the overall pole position for the Northeast Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park on Friday to lead a 1-2 result for Corvette Racing.
Taylor, driving the No. 3 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Chevrolet Corvette C8.R with Antonio Garcia, set a best GT Le Mans (GTLM) lap of 49.958 (106.216 mph) in a 15-minute session for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Saturday’s 3:10 p.m. ET race, with rain predicted, will be an all-GT affair with GTLM and GT Daytona (GTD) headlining IMSA’s return to Lime Rock Park.
Taylor and teammate Antonio Garcia enter Lime Rock after back-to-back victories at Watkins Glen and lead the GTLM Drivers Championship, as does Chevrolet in the Manufacturers standings.
Taylor outqualified Tommy Milner in the No. 4 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Corvette by just 0.142 seconds. Milner and Nick Tandy were second in the most recent GTLM race at Watkins Glen behind the No. 3 C8.R but were in winning positions in both races at The Glen. They also won the non-points Detroit round in mid-June.
Corvette Racing is a five-time winner at Lime Rock but this is the first race the seven-turn, 1.474-mile circuit for the Corvette C8.R, a shot at an overall race victory during one of the busiest races on the calendar.
Like Watkins Glen within the last month, Lime Rock Park was one venue at which the Corvette C8.R didn’t compete during its debut season. That didn’t impact the team during the back-to-back weekends at Watkins Glen, however, when Corvette Racing took the race win, pole position and fastest race lap in both the six-hour enduro and two-hour, 40-minute sprint race.
The Northeast Grand Prix from Lime Rock Park will air at 5:30 p.m. ET on Saturday, July 17 with live streaming coverage on TrackPass and NBC Sports Gold at 3:05 p.m. ET. Live audio coverage from IMSA Radio will be available on IMSA.com, Sirius 216, XM 202 and SiriusXM Online 992.
JORDAN TAYLOR, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R – GTLM POLE-WINNER: “It’s been a busy day. It’s the first time with the C8.R at Lime Rock. Unfortunately we didn’t race here last year, so we’re learning a lot. We had a dry session, a damp session and then qualifying. So we’ve proved that the car is good in all conditions here. It was a good lap to get the pole, and the guys have done a good job leading into this weekend. It’s a new track for us with this car so rolling off the truck strong was important. It was good but we’ve been making some changes to see how the car reacts. So far so good but tomorrow could be a different story.”
MORE ON QUALIFYING: “Today was a busy day with two practices and qualifying. It’s the first time we’ve had the C8.R here at Lime Rock, so a lot of work went into this weekend with a lot of preparation. We rolled off the truck very strong. We made some changes through Practice Two even though it was damp to get a read on it. Obviously in qualifying the car was quite strong. The biggest thing was just finding a clear lap with the GTD cars on track. Obviously it’s been a good run for the 3 car so far this season, but at the same time the 4 car has been on our tail every weekend. It’s good to have that intra-team battle. I think we’ll have that all day tomorrow.”
RACING FOR OVERALL VICTORY THIS WEEKEND: “I was thinking about that this morning. When you go to the drivers’ briefing, the front-row guys usually go and talk to the Race Director because you’re leading the field. It will be different not having anyone in front of us and not having prototypes coming around in traffic. In one aspect, it will be easier without the traffic but at the same time the intensity will be super-high just because you’re flat-out the whole time. It’s difficult to pass the GTD guys so it will be tricky in traffic. I think strategy could come into play tomorrow. It should be a good race.”
PLACES FOR IMPROVEMENT: “Today was messy with the conditions. Antonio started this morning on new tires, and I got in on older tires. The afternoon session was damp so I drove on rain tires and then in the intermediate conditions we went to slicks. Everyone in GTLM was kind of figuring out what it was like on new tires in the dry here. We weren’t here last year so there’s a lot to learn. For me, there was a lot of experimenting. Brake points were different. Carrying speed through Turn Six and Turn Seven… I had a couple of big moments just because I thought I could carry a lot more speed than I actually could. But it’s good to have that in my pocket for tomorrow to know where the limits are.”
TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R – QUALIFIED SECOND IN GTLM: “We just missed it a bit with the setup. We’re still working on getting the balance where we need to be. Tomorrow is going to be the challenge if it’s dry with the high temps and the tire degradation. If it’s wet, which is looking likely, that presents its own challenges as well. We got some good work in today but the majority will come tomorrow in warmup to make any last-minute improvements.”
Source: Corvette Racing