CORVETTE RACING AT LONG BEACH: Southern California Street Fight
· First race in southern California for mid-engine Corvette C8.R
· Milner, Tandy coming off GTLM victory at Laguna Seca
· All four Corvette Racing drivers with previous Long Beach victories
DETROIT (Sept. 21, 2021) – Corvette Racing’s mid-engine Chevrolet Corvette C8.R has been on a global tour since its debut in January 2020. It has raced at racetracks throughout North America, plus Belgium and France since then.
Now the Corvette Racing program is set to make its return to southern California this weekend for the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach – postponed from its traditional spring date due to COVID-19.
Long Beach is the second street circuit event of the season for Corvette Racing, following the Chevrolet Sports Car Challenge in June at Detroit’s Belle Isle. Tommy Milner and Nick Tandy teamed for a GT Le Mans (GTLM) victory there in a non-points outing in the No. 4 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Corvette C8.R, and the pair is coming off a win at Laguna Seca two weeks ago up the coast in Monterey.
Second went to GTLM Drivers Championship leaders Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor in the No. 3 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Corvette. The duo has four wins on the season and five pole positions, plus a runner-up finish at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The combined efforts have Chevrolet in the Manufacturers Championship lead.
All four drivers have previous victories at Long Beach. Milner and Taylor each of three while Garcia and Tandy have one each.
Chevrolet on Display at Long Beach
The return of Corvette Racing and Chevrolet to Long Beach will carry extra flare with the inclusion of the Chevrolet Motorsports Display to the event weekend. Located inside the Long Beach Expo Center, the Chevrolet Motorsports Display will be open to fans throughout the weekend and will be full of Chevrolet vehicles that spectators can learn more about during a busy event.
The Chevrolet Motorsports Display opens at 8 a.m. Friday through Sunday. Numerous Chevrolet vehicles and other highlights include:
• A 2022 Corvette Stingray IMSA GTLM Championship Edition coupe
• A 2022 Corvette Stingray convertible
• Additional Chevrolet products such as the 2020 Blazer, 2021 Camaro 1LE and 2021 Silverado Trail Boss
• A special display with various Corvette Racing artifacts
• An opportunity to receive a Corvette T-shirt
Corvette Racing will contest the Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach on Sept. 24-25 from the Long Beach Street Circuit in Long Beach, Calif. Live television coverage will air live on NBCSN at 5 p.m. ET on Sept. 25 with live streaming coverage on TrackPass and NBC Sports Gold. Live audio coverage from IMSA Radio will be available on IMSA.com, XM 202 and SiriusXM Online 992.
ANTONIO GARCIA, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R: “I think there are a few things we can transfer from Detroit to Long Beach. In a way, there are some similarities and those are mainly the walls! The track surface and the way the circuit is laid out is a little different. We need to work a little bit and look at some past race data. I’m sure we will come up with a good setup to start. It won’t be the first time for the C8.R on a street circuit, so that’s a good start. We can learn a lot from that.
“I’ve led in the Hairpin two years in a row and didn’t win either time! Those are memories that you sometimes have – which races you’ve won and which ones you’ve lost. Especially the way we lost those races will probably stick in my head for a long time! A win there would definitely help forgetting about those moments.”
JORDAN TAYLOR, NO. 3 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R: “Detroit was a good lesson for us to have that weekend and understand what the C8.R is going to be like on a street course. Long Beach is always a different animal. It’s always difficult there with how limited the track time is and keeping up with the track evolution. The Corvette guys have had so much history there that we can understand how the track will develop so focus on the car itself and what the drivers need. I have a lot of confidence. Long Beach is always super-intense. I’ve been there many times in a prototype but this is my first time in a GT class. It’s always looked like a proper street fight in the GT classes so I’m sure it will be like that again this year, as well.”
TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R: “Both Detroit and Long Beach have track surfaces that are comparable. I think Long Beach is a little more difficult because it used more as a public road throughout the rest of the year, so it is quite dirty. As seems always the case, it’s very dirty and dusty, and we spend an hour of the first two-hour practice cleaning the track. With Detroit under our belt – the first street race for the C8.R – we can take some of those lessons, setup options and things we tried to see how they carry over to Long Beach. Hopefully we can make the most of an already compressed schedule and limited track time to get our Corvette in a place that is comfortable for Nick and I.”
NICK TANDY, NO. 4 MOBIL 1/SiriusXM CHEVROLET CORVETTE C8.R: “Long Beach is always one of the events I look forward to most of the season. The actual race is different in that it’s a short race, a single stop and different to what we normally do. The track is what I personally look forward to most. It’s a street circuit, yes, but it’s quite different to some other street tracks I’ve raced on before. You have that long open blast down Shoreline Drive and some fast stuff in the middle sector as well. It’s an enjoyable track to try and get the car to the limit. We did have a good run at Detroit in the No. 4 Corvette. We know the cars work well in this configuration. It’s been something I’ve looked forward to since our success at Detroit.”
2021 WeatherTech SportsCar Championship – GTLM (After Seven of 10 Events)
1. Antonio Garcia/Jordan Taylor – 2,562
2. Tommy Milner/Nick Tandy – 2,375
3. Cooper MacNeil – 2,314
4. Matt Campbell – 1,702
5. Augusto Farfus/Jesse Krohn/John Edwards – 1001
1. No. 3 Corvette Racing – 2,562
2. No. 4 Corvette Racing – 2,375
3. No. 79 WeatherTech Racing – 2,314
4. No. 24 BMW Team RLL – 1,001
5. No. 25 BMW Team RLL – 966
1. Chevrolet – 2,615
2. Porsche – 2,460
3. BMW – 1,052
4. Ferrari – 330
CORVETTE RACING AT LONG BEACH: By the Numbers
• 1: As in one team, one manufacturer and one model of car for 13 appearances at Long Beach: Corvette Racing, Chevrolet and the Chevrolet Corvette.
• 2: Generations of Corvette Racing entries at Long Beach since 2007 –Corvette C6.R (2007-13) and Corvette C7.R (2014-2019). That number increases to three this year with the first Long Beach appearance for the mid-engine Corvette C8.R
• 3: Number of Long Beach race victories for Corvette Racing teammates Tommy Milner and Jordan Taylor.
• 6: Number of drivers who have competed at Long Beach for Corvette Racing – Olivier Beretta, Antonio Garcia, Gavin, Jan Magnussen, Johnny O’Connell and Tommy Milner. That number will grow to eight this week with the additions of Jordan Taylor and Nick Tandy
• 7: Number of Long Beach victories in 12 appearances for Corvette Racing – more than any other IMSA entrant at the circuit.
• 9: Number of Long Beach sports car victories for Chevrolet. Throw in 11 IndyCar wins, and Chevrolet has claimed 20 victories in the event’s two premier races.
• 13: Manufacturer Championships for Chevrolet and Corvette Racing since 2001.
• 18: Number of street circuit victories for Corvette Racing – more than any other IMSA entrant at the circuit.
• 25: Tracks at which Corvette Racing has won races – Baltimore, Charlotte Motor Speedway, COTA, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park/Mosport, Daytona, Detroit, Houston, Laguna Seca, Le Mans, Lime Rock, Long Beach, Miami, Mid-Ohio, Portland, Road America, Road Atlanta, Sebring, Sonoma, St. Petersburg, Texas, Trois Rivieres, Utah, VIR, Washington DC and Watkins Glen.
• 27: Number of GT Le Mans wins in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship for Corvette Racing since the start of 2014.
• 118: Victories worldwide for Corvette Racing – 110 in North America and eight at Le Mans.
• 247: Event starts by Corvette Racing since 1999.
• 3,650.62: Number of racing miles completed by Corvette Racing in its 12 previous trips to Long Beach. That represents 1,855 laps around the 1.968-mile street circuit.
• 330,966.34: Total number of racing miles completed by Corvette Racing since its inception. To put that in perspective Apollo 13 – the longest manned spaceflight in history – covered “just” 248,655 miles when it went it orbited the moon. Simply put, the program has raced to the moon… and then some.
Corvette Racing at Long Beach (wins in bold)
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Johnny O’Connell – 2nd in GT1 (Magnussen fastest race lap)
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Oliver Gavin – 1st in GT1 (Gavin pole)
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Johnny O’Connell/Jan Magnussen – 1st in GT1 (Magnussen pole)
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Oliver Gavin – 1st in GT1 (Gavin fastest race lap)
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Johnny O’Connell – 2nd in GT1
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Oliver Gavin – 1st in GT1 (Beretta pole, fastest race lap)
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Johnny O’Connell – 2nd in GT2
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Jan Magnussen – 9th in GT2 (Gavin fastest race lap)
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Olivier Beretta/Tommy Milner – 5th in GT
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Jan Magnussen – 2nd in GT (Magnussen fastest race lap)
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 4th in GT
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 1st in GT (Gavin fastest race lap)
No. 3 Corvette C6.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 5th in GT
No. 4 Corvette C6.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 4th in GT (Gavin fastest race lap)
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 1st in GTLM (Magnussen pole)
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 3rd in GTLM (Milner fastest race lap)
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 3rd in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 7th in GTLM
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 9th in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 2nd in GTLM
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 5th in GTLM (Magnussen pole)
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 1st in GTLM
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 4th in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 1st in GTLM
No. 3 Corvette C7.R: Jan Magnussen/Antonio Garcia – 2nd in GTLM
No. 4 Corvette C7.R: Oliver Gavin/Tommy Milner – 3rd in GTLM
Source: Corvette Racing