Garcia & Magnussen in # 3 Corvette win 2018 IMSA GTLM Driver Championship at Petite Le Mans.
One heckuva team as # 4 Corvette saves the day at Road Atlanta.
Even though neither Corvette had won a race during the entire season, Consistency (podium finishes at 8 of 11 circuits) and Fortitude (dealing with the bizarre) paid off for a 3rd straight IMSA GTLM Drivers Championship tallying 322 points.
With about 2-1/2 hours to go with a good chance to win, Antonio Garcia made a routine stop under a caution. In the heat of the moment, he overcooked the exit and spun into the inside wall. Garcia later remarked “it was probably my best race and also my most embarrassing race”.
Watch it happen: https://twitter.com/twitter/statuses/1051248502393774081
Speedy work in the garage area (replace nose, front fender and engine floor) by the Dan Binks crew got the # 3 Corvette back in action just two laps off the pace.
Running 8th and needing 4th or better to clinch the championship, Garcia and Magnussen’s fate would be decided by the # 4 sister car of Milner & Gavin. (Each shared by veteran relief driver Marcel Fassler).
Redemption was a stellar 2nd place finish by Tommy Milner, racing like mad into the night, stealing 6 points from the Chip Ganassi # 67 Ford GT that otherwise would have won. Milner and Gavin were 3rd in the driver standings with 310 points.
It is the 12th Driver Championship for Corvette Racing and 13th Team Title in the program’s 20-year history. Watch them celebrate. https://www.facebook.com/janmagnussen23/videos/1862347077194287/?t=29
The # 911 Porsche RSR driven by Nick Tandy and Patrick Pilet (with Frederic Makowiecki) won the GTLM class in the 10-hour race.
Ford secured the GTLM manufacturers championship with five wins on the season between its two entries.
The # 4 re-branded as the Red Line Corvette will race in the FIA World Endurance Championship Six Hours of Shanghai on Nov. 16-18.
Tribute was paid to the late Don Panoz, successful entrepreneur and visionary founder of the ALMS, a lifeline to US pro sports car racing that became part of IMSA WeatherTech in 2013. Don died on Sept 11 at age 83.