Corvette Racing gave fans at the Rolex 24 At Daytona plenty of at the end of the race, as the No. 4 Corvette C7.R and the No. 3 C7.R battled down the wire. At the finish line, it was the No. 4 Corvette which finished .034 seconds in front of its sister car, the closest class finish in Rolex 24 history.
While Jan Magnussen, one of the drivers of the No. 3 Corvette, is hoping to see a similar finish at Sebring, albeit with a different finishing order, he said the fact Corvette Racing let the two cars go at it in the final 30 minutes was something that means a lot to both teams.
“I think it’s one of the coolest positions Corvette Racing has made since I’ve been there,” Magnussen said. “As soon as Antonio [Garcia] got by the Porsche and we were 1-2, many teams would have taken the position of ‘stop racing’ to make sure we finish 1-2. It was cool they realized both teams had been racing hard for the past 23.5 hours. I think what they did was gutsy.”
Magnussen said the decision to let the two teams go all out for the win not only shows Corvette Racing has confidence in its two teams, but also can pay dividends later on in the season.
“What happened at Daytona at the end there when they let us race is also because they trust us not to do anything stupid,” he said. “It keeps you sharp and makes you fight for everything out there and for sure – the truest competitors you always have out there is the sister car because it’s equal. You don’t always know what the other manufacturers have.”
“The way to measure yourself the best is against your teammates. We push each other as much as we can to ensure that we are the best that we can be.”
As the No. 3 Corvette Racing C7.R looks to repeat last year’s victory at the 12 Hours of Sebring, Magnussen said it’s great knowing the team will have plenty of fans cheering the team on.
“We’ve enjoyed the support from the Corvette community ever since the car started racing,” he said. “Every time we go out to a race we know we have hundreds of Corvette fans who drove there in their own cars just to be there alongside us. Whether we win or lose, they’re there beside us and that is really fantastic and unique, too.”
In addition to four class wins at Sebring, Magnussen has four class wins in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. His first class win came in 2004 with Corvette Racing, which he said was the most memorable.
Magussen said the competition in the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship is top-notch, which is evident by Corvette Racing winning last year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.
While Magnussen would like nothing more than to add a fifth class championship at Le Mans, he’d also like to add a fifth at Sebring first.
“Sebring has a fantastic history and there’s this whole other party happening while we’re racing,” he said. “There’s a little bit of it at Daytona, but not to the extent that it is at Sebring. It makes for a really special atmosphere and something I think everybody looks forward to each year.”