There had been some speculation that Chevrolet was not going to continue to participate in the American LeMans Series(ALMS) after the 2007 season due to lack of competition inf the GT1 class. Though today Chevrolet has announced that they will participate in the full 12 race 2008 schedule. So expect to see the familiar images of the competition yellow C6.R Corvettes thundering down the straights next year.
Competing in the series for 2008 will be an important part of General Motors 100th anniversary celebration in 2008.
Since the teams debut in 1999. Corvette Racing has won seven consecutive GT1 manufacturers and team championships and six straight drivers championships in ALMS. The team also holds the series' records for class victories (57) and 1-2 finishes (40).
Chevrolet Factory Team to Run Entire ALMS Schedule and 24 Hours of Le Mans
DETROIT – Corvette Racing, the most successful team in the history of the American Le Mans Series, will compete in the GT1 class in all 12 events on the ALMS schedule in 2008. Chevrolet's two-car factory road racing team will also return to the 24 Hours of Le Mans in pursuit of a sixth GT1 title in the world's most famous sports car race.
"Corvette Racing was conceived as a long-term program to showcase the performance, technology, and value of Chevrolet's world-class sports car," said Mark Kent, director of GM Racing. "Since the team's competition debut in 1999, Corvette Racing's success in top-tier road racing has produced a strong return on our investment, paying dividends in marketing, engineering, technology transfer, personnel development and other areas of our business. Corvette is now a performance icon that's recognized around the world, and Corvette Racing's continued participation in the ALMS and the 24 Hours of Le Mans will be an important element in the global celebration of GM's 100th anniversary in 2008."
Corvette Racing has won seven consecutive GT1 manufacturers and team championships and six straight drivers championships in ALMS competition. The team holds the series' records for class victories (57) and 1-2 finishes (40).
"Our decision to compete in all 12 rounds of the ALMS schedule in 2008 reflects our commitment to our sponsors, our suppliers, and to Corvette enthusiasts worldwide," said Steve Wesoloski, GM Racing Road Racing Group manager. "There is a reason why thousands of Corvette owners attend Corvette Corrals at ALMS events and why the autograph line at Corvette Racing is the longest in the ALMS paddock: Racing is an integral part of Corvette's history and heritage, and we are continuing that tradition.
"Experience teaches us that motorsports is cyclical, and the GT1 category is currently in transition," Wesoloski observed. "Would we like to see more competition in GT1 in the ALMS? Absolutely! But in the absence of season-long competition, we are absolutely committed to controlling our own destiny. We are pushing hard to develop our chassis and powertrain, to refine our race strategy, and to continuously improve every element of the program. We know that the competition at Le Mans will be intense, and we will use the ALMS series to hone the race cars, the drivers, and the team to prepare for it."
Corvette Racing will test two new Compuware Corvette C6.R race cars in February in preparation for the season-opening round of the ALMS series, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, on March 15, 2008.
General Motors Corp. (NYSE: GM), the world's largest automaker, has been the annual global industry sales leader for 76 years. Founded in 1908, GM today employs about 280,000 people around the world. With global headquarters in Detroit, GM manufactures its cars and trucks in 33 countries. In 2006, nearly 9.1 million GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn and Vauxhall. GM's OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at www.gm.com.