There are many different forms of motor sports but few are as challenging on both driver and machine as the 24 Hours of Le Mans that took place this past weekend. In the Corvette community, the Corvette Racing team that competes in GT racing and in this case, Le Mans, is a definite focal point because of the success the team has had over the years.
This past weekend marked the first time the all-new C7.R Corvette would compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the results were great. While all teams compete to win, the pressure was on Corvette Racing with the debut of the C7.R and even though they did not win, they earned a solid 2nd place in their class. Unless you are Ricky Bobby’s dad and live by the motto “if you’re not first, you’re last,” a 2nd place finish against the toughest competitors in one of the most grueling races on the planet is pretty darn good.
The Corvette Racing team believed they had a winning car and had they not had a few time consuming problems throughout the race, they may have come away with the win. In a feature article by our friends at Corvette Blogger, it was disclosed that the C7.R had malfunctions with the on-board air jack system and had three occasions where they had to get behind the safety car, losing valuable time.
“While Corvette Racing has won in class seven times, we are proud of the persistence, determination, and teamwork from the drivers, engineers, and crew that delivered a runner-up finish for the new Corvette C7.R. The team’s ‘never give up’ approach was evident during each lap, pit stop, and driver rotation,” added Jim Campell, Chevrolet U.S. Vice President of Performance Vehicles and Motorsports.
With a 2nd place finish not being exactly what the team wanted, you still have to respect their teamwork and determination to be able to pull off a finish like this in an entirely new car. There’s always next year.