CORVETTE C6.R signs Off in s TylE
We can’t wait to go back to the 24 Hours of
Le Mans because, frankly, we have something
to prove. We haven’t won in a couple of years
and that’s something we need to set right.
Le Mans in 2013 was a testament once
again to the fortitude and the dedication of
the guys on this team. We thought going in
that we could be reasonably competitive.
Given what the Balance of Performance
was, we knew that we were not going to be
quick. But we also knew that with our level
of preparation and the way we run that
race, it was possible to have a great finish
there. We’ve done it before.
And then we went to the official pre-race
test day and finished up fifth and sixth. In and
of itself, that wasn’t such a disappointment,
but then [Le Mans organizer] the ACO added
weight to our cars for the race, guaranteeing
we’d be even slower. Down the Mulsanne,
the other GT cars were driving by like
they’re on an Autobahn and we’re idling
along in the slow lane. It wasn’t even close.
The European-spec [Michelin] tires were
noticeably different from what we’d used in
the ALMS, and that was another issue to
racing OFF the back FOOt
crashing in his Aston Martin on the third lap]
in the first 30 minutes, and you get caught
out behind the safety cars, that put us four
minutes down only a half-hour in. The three
cars that battled each other for the whole
race were the three cars that were at the
back of the pack at the first safety car. They
had their own race for 24 hours; we were
just racing at the back of the pack. It was a
year where if it could go wrong, it did.
So at that point, you know what your
destiny’s going to be. But we never gave up,
and our mechanics and crew never gave less
than 100 percent, but fourth and seventh in
the GTE Pro class was the end result. When
it’s done, you’re angry and tired, but you
know you worked as hard as you could work
and that there wasn’t anything else you
could do; that’s your only level of satisfaction.
There’s unfinished business there.
Corvette Racing is the team that everybody
lines up to beat. Porsche’s victory, by their
own admission, was tainted because they
know they didn’t beat the best because the
best guys were running around with a
wrecking ball tied to their butt...
In its final Le Mans, the C6.R had been pegged back, but the team still gave its all, as Doug Fehan recounts.
deal with. Rain at the test day meant we didn’t
learn much about them, which left us with a
giant learning curve leading up to the race.
We knew that was going to affect our
performance. Then, when you get to the
beginning of the race and have the tragedy
with Allan Simonsen [who died after
Added weight and disrupted preparation
meant Corvette Racing wasn’t a factor for
the win. But it still gave 100 percent effort.
“We never gave up, and
our mechanics and crew
never gave less than