Corvette Racing Returning to 24 Hours of Le Mans and Then Some

After taking a pass on the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2020 for the first time in 20 years, Corvette Racing will not only be a part of the 2021 Le Mans, but plans to compete in at least one FIA World Endurance Championship race leading up to it.

Corvette Racing missed out on an international opportunity to showcase its new C8.R last year, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and its conflict with the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship races. “We’re proud Corvette Racing has been invited to the 24 Hours of Le Mans over the past 20 years and regret that we won’t be participating this year,” said the Twitter announcement last season. “We hope we have the opportunity to race at Le Mans again.”

So Corvette Racing will be going for the Big Three again in 2021, and they are already a third of the way there with the win at the season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona. Corvette goes for number two this Saturday as the C8.R races in the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.

Corvette also announced today that to help in preparation for the 2021 Le Mans, which will be held August 21-22, Corvette Racing will enter a single C8.R in the season-opening WEC round: The Six Hours of Spa-Francorchamps on May 1. Antonio Garcia and team veteran Oliver Gavin will drive the No. 63 C8.R at the Belgian track, which is the first time the two veterans have shared a car in their entire Corvette Racing careers.

We are headed back to @FIAWEC with two #Corvette entries in #GTEPro for #LeMans24 and a single #C8R for @AntonioGarcia_3 and @olivergavin at #[email protected] @nickcatsburg @TommyMilner @NickTandyR @AlexanderSims @TeamChevy @24hoursoflemans pic.twitter.com/Rhoqrq9d9S

“Competing at Spa will provide the Corvette Racing team a bit of a refresher on specific rules and strategy methods that are unique to FIA WEC races. Pitstop operations and safety car procedures are among the biggest differences in IMSA and WEC competitions,” said Chevrolet in a press announcement. As the schedule permits, Corvette possibly could also run additional WEC races before the Le Mans race.

At Le Mans, Rolex 24 winners Antonio Garcia, Jordan Taylor and Nicky Catsburg will share the No. 63 C8.R, while in the No. 64 Corvette, the trio of Tommy Milner, Nick Tandy and Alexander Sims seek their first 24-hour victory together after a runner-up finish at Daytona.

“Not going to Le Mans last year was something we really missed.”

“Not going to Le Mans last year was something we really missed,” Garcia said. “Going back there this year is something we all want. Obviously, it’s one of the biggest races of the year. Missing it last year was hard, tough and very unusual for Corvette Racing. Going back now, we are looking forward to it. We’ve already won a 24-hour race, which gives us a lot of confidence. I do feel like we will be much more prepared with the C8.R this year than we would have been last year. I’m hoping we are as competitive at Le Mans as we were in Daytona.”

Chevrolet also says Corvette Racing continues to explore what now seems inevitable: Building a GT3 version of the more complex, sophisticated GTE they are racing now, in preparation for meeting the new GTD Pro category announced by the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship to essentially replace the GT Le Mans class, which has dwindled to a handful of entries.

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