Corvette Racing saw the latest big development in its 15 year-long history Monday with the introduction of the Corvette C7.R at the 2014 North American International Auto Show. The roots of Corvette Racing stretch back to 1999, when the team made its debut in the C5-R racecar at the Rolex 24 at Daytona.
From 1999 to 2004, Corvette Racing and the C5-R set a new benchmark for racing success with 31 victories in the American Le Mans series along with an overall victory at the Rolex 24 in 2001. Corvette Racing also won manufacturer and driver championships in ALMS three years in a row from 2001-2004.
The success followed the team to Europe too, winning the famous 24 Hours of Le Mans first in 2001 and then twice more in 2002 and 2004.
In 2005, the C6.R made its competition debut at Sebring. Based on the production Corvette Z06 production car’s architecture, the C6.R utilized a 7.0-liter small block V8 with a dry sump lubrication system, CNC-ported aluminum cylinder heads, titanium valves, forged steel crankshaft and plate-honed cylinder bores.
The C6.R manaed to live up to the legacy set by the C5-R that came before it, winning 39 GT1 races in the ALMS and securing driver, team and manufacturer championships every year from 2005 to 2008. Corvette Racing also won 12 straight races from 2005 to 2006, followed by an impressive 25 straight wins from 2007-2009.
In addition to the multiple ALMS victories, the C6.R won the 24 hours of Le Mans in the GT1 class in 2006, 2007 and 2009. Corvette Racing then took another step forward, introducing a GT-spec car based on the Corvette ZR1. The GT-spec car won 12 times from 2009 through to 2013, plus a win at Le Mans in 2011, contributing to Corvette Racing team and manufacturer championships in 2012 and 2013.
The team sees a new challenge in 2014, with the launch of a brand new race series, the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. The teams 16th season will see the competition debut of the C7.R racecar at the 24 Hours of Daytona on January 25.