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Audi, Corvette steal the show at Le Mans
Jack Williams
USA TODAY



LE MANS, France — Audi and Corvette dominated the 2004 24 Hours of Le Mans as expected, but the victories were far from being as easy as the resulted alone show. The Audi Sport Japan Audi R-8 driven by Seiji Ara of Japan, Rinaldo Capello of Italy, and Frank Kristensen of Denmark, won, only 41.35 seconds ahead of the similar R-8 from the Audi Sport UK Team Veloqx with three British drivers

Corvettes placed one and two in the GTS class for cars more like ordinary cars than the winning prototypes after accidents slowed the Ferrari that had threatened to take the class.

Oliver Gavin of Great Britain, Olivier Beretta of Monte Carlo, and Jan Magnussen of Denmark, drove one of the Corvette Team's two cars to sixth place overall to take the class win.

They had trailed the Prodrive Ferrari 550 driven by Tomas Enge of the Czech Republic, Peter Knox of The Netherlands, and Alain Menu of Switzerland, which was sixth overall and the GTS lead from the around 9 p.m. Saturday until a little before noon Sunday when the Ferrari crashed, damaging its suspension.

The Ferrari rejoined the race, but wasn't able to keep up with the Corvette.

Full Article Here

 

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What a race for the Corvette team. After all of the wrecks and problems, they still came out on top, and in the process, the #64 of Gavin/Beretta/Magnussen set a GTS distance record. After being truly beaten last year by the Prodrive Ferraris, it must be sweet to come back win again. What a great way for the C5R to make what will probably be its last trip to Le Mans.

During the race broadcast it was mentioned that the C6R was currently being homolagated and should be ready for Sebring next year. I can't wait to get a look at that car, but at the same time it will be sad to say goodbye to a great racecar.

On another note, what a great day for American race teams. Three out of the four classes were won by Americans.

It was also a historic day as the Audi R8 won its fourth 24 hours, and Tom Kristensen tied the great Jacky Ickx with six wins, amazingly five of them in a row.
 

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ah, it makes me so happy to see American iron (especially the Corvette) winning in France. :)
 

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:lol:
Congratulations for Corvette Team,
I must say I will be missing the C5-R too
I am proud to see Corvette banners in France every year(I wish there were as many Corvettes on the European streets :( )
 

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Originally posted by GM_Guy81@Jun 13 2004, 12:17 PM
ah, it makes me so happy to see American iron (especially the Corvette) winning in France. :)
Me too! Dittos to GM for supporting Corvette in the ALMS! :D

Now if we can get something going in the IRL and F1 series...that will further improve reliability studies and increase design efforts in engine wear and tolerancing to make better street cars B)
 

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Great result, for a great team effort. I hope that the coming C6-R is a step forward, to ensure more horse whippings.

Way to go Corvette Racing!
 

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The Corvette Team deserves major accolades for overcoming such adversity to achieve such an impressive 1-2 finish. I hope GM can build on this success and continue to dominate the GTS class. Perhaps it's time to take another crack at the LMP1 class with Cadillac - beating Audi would do wonders for Cadillac's image in Europe. I was disappointed to see that previous effort abandoned so quickly.

Now if we can get something going in the IRL and F1 series...that will further improve reliability studies and increase design efforts in engine wear and tolerancing to make better street cars
It would be a dream come true to see GM field a F1 team, but that's either way off in the future or never going to happen (unless GM is forced to buy Fiat and can somehow inherit Ferrari :rolleyes: ). Management seems to want quick returns on its investment, and success in F1 takes a lot of time and money - look at how much money Toyota has spent so far and how far they are behind the established players. And it's arguable how much, if any, benefit Ford has derived from the Jaguar team.
 

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Glad to see that GM's cars are really making a big showing in major racing events. First the C5R, then the CTS-V.
 

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Yeah I watched the race and they really hung on during the night despite the wrecks for a well deserved victory. Man, the toughest opponent wasn't one of the teams but the race track itself. I can't recall the last time I saw so much attrition during the first half of the race. I just wish Dodge would figure out how to homolgate the CompCoupe, the Corvette/Saleen battle just didn't cut it.
 
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