View Full Version : [Press] Trois Rivieres GTS Race Review: Corvette Remains Unbeaten in GTS

08-05-03, 06:36 AM
From TheRaceSite.com:

<div align="center"><b>Trois Rivieres GTS Race Review: Corvette Remains Unbeaten in GTS</b></div>

<b>8/4/2003 -</b>

With a healthy five lap margin of victory over the Ferrari efforts Corvette Racing took home the Trois Rivieres win. Although Canadian Corvette ace Ron Fellows would have dearly like to have taken home victory on his home soil, it was his teammates in the #4 machine, Kelly Collins and Oliver Gavin, who took home their second win of the year.

Fellows and co-driver Johnny O’Connell, driving the #3 Compuware Corvette C5-R, held the lead in the class for the majority of the race but lost position after a crucial pit stop. Gavin was able to beat Fellows out of the pit lane and held on to the lead for the remainder of the 3-hour event. The victory maintains Corvette’s undefeated streak in the GTS class of the American Le Mans Series for 2003.

Gavin and Collins finished the race in fourth place overall, just missing out on an overall podium spot. "I think Ron got held up in traffic when I came out of the pits we were together," said Englishman Gavin on his pass of the Canadian Fellows. "The boys did a great job sending us out in front. Then it was a case of holding off Ron. For six or seven laps I pushed very hard. As I said, I think Ron was held up in traffic, and he may have been pushed wide (by another car) and it takes a lap or two to get the tires back under you when that happens. Our only problem in the race was with our brakes. Early in the race they were cooked. I had to back right up."

"Everyone on the Compuware Corvette did a great job, but for us the difference between first and second was a few mistakes in the pits," commented O'Connell on the intra-team battle. "We came in with the lead and came out second."

When asked about traction control, O'Connell answered with the following: "Well, if you don't have it and someone else does, then of course you want it. It takes a little different driving style, but it works!"

Third in the GTS class went to the hard working privateer effort of Team Olive Garden under the careful guidance of team owner Gabriele Rafanelli. The car is shared by Italians Emanuelle Naspetti and Domenico Schiattarella.

"The car was very good, no problems," commented Schiattarella. "All we had to do was stay out of trouble. We had a slight problem with the brakes but it was OK. Being on the podium feels very good. It is like a win for us. The Corvettes are very hard to compete against."

The Team Olive Garden effort was five laps down to the Corvettes and the fourth place GTS finisher was another five laps behind that. The #80 of David Brabham and Jan Magnussen scored the fourth place in the ProDrive Ferrari.

Tomas Enge and Peter Kox, the only non-Corvette drivers with a chance at the GTS title, finished fifth in the #88 ProDriver Ferrari. The duo scored the pole position in qualifying but could not convert to a finish.

"It's obviously very disappointing," Kox commented stating the obvious. "Before we came here we knew we would have a hard time and Saturday turned out to be really good for us. Tomas did a fantastic job in the qualifying, putting the car on pole and we were all excited and looking for a good result.

"I had a really good feeling for what was going to happen. It turned out to be a disappointment for us all because we retired, but we've learnt some lessons and we mustn't forget our competitors have played this game for a long time and we are still quite new to it. We have to up our game," added Kox once again stating the obvious.

The ALMS will have a weekend off before concluding its two-race Canadian swing with the Grand Prix of Mosport at Mosport International Raceway near Toronto Aug. 15-17.

08-05-03, 07:39 AM
I think that this is great for the Corvette overall. I believe new technology and ideas will hopefully be learned during the races and used on future production Corvettes for the years to come.

Great win for an awesome, dedicated team. :upthumbs

Cape Cod Bob
08-08-03, 08:20 PM
Unbeaten in GTS???
I seem to remember a couple of months ago the C5-R team got hammered at LeMans by the Ferrari. They are doing great now but missed winning the biggest race of the season, and maybe in 50 years!!!