Long Beach, California is a port city around metropolitan Los Angeles, but likewise it is a city all its own, ranking as the 36th largest in America according to the 2010 Census. It also hosts racing, as of late, and this weekend it is playing host to the Grand Prix of Long Beach, where the Corvette Racing team will be participating in the Tequila Patrón Sports Car Showcase.
The Grand Prix takes place in the heart of the streets of Long Beach, an 11-turn circuit that’s a hair under 2 miles. Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen (who has won the pole twice at Long Beach) share the #3 Corvette C7.R; Tommy Milner and Oliver Gavin, winners from two years ago, are at the helm of the #4 Corvette.
This is the first year for the Corvette C7.R platform. Based on the pedestrian 2015 Corvette Z06 (which has yet to hit the streets), both cars were developed jointly and share the same frame.
Both cars ran strong at Sebring earlier in the season, but mechanical issues led the #4 car to drop out after leading the way for awhile; the #3 car also showed moxie despite an early-race collision and a punctured tire.
“At Long Beach, you need to run at 100 percent but you have no room for error. The walls are very close and traffic will be a factor. That’s part of the game but I think that’s why I like street circuits. I enjoy that pressure,” said Garcia.
Tequila Patrón Sports Car Showcase at Long Beach (all times PDT)
TUDOR Championship Practice 1: 7:40 a.m., Friday, April 11
TUDOR Championship Practice 2: 5:05 p.m., Friday, April 11
GTLM Qualifying: 5:45 p.m., Friday, April 11
Tequila Patrón Sports Car Showcase: 3:10 p.m., Saturday, April 12