TUSC: Corvette announces GTLM lineup, adds Briscoe, Liddell

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Corvette Racing has announced its lineup for the GTLM class in the 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship. The team’s 2012 and 2013 full season pairings, Antonio Garcia and Jan Magnussen (No. 3) and Oliver Gavin and Tommy Milner (No. 4) will return, now armed with Corvette’s new C7.R to replace the departed C6.R (pictured right). The Gavin/Milner pairing won the 2012 American Le Mans Series GT driver’s title, and Garcia and Magnussen took this year’s title.

Endurance race additions will be Ryan Briscoe (No. 3) and Robin Liddell (No. 4) for the Rolex 24 at Daytona and Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring, the first two rounds of the TUDOR Championship. At 24 Hours of Le Mans on June 14-15, Jordan Taylor and Richard Westbrook will reprise their roles from 2013.

“We feel this roster will be extremely competitive,” Mark Kent, Director of Chevrolet Racing, said in a release. “This is a program that embraces continuity and teamwork in all areas. It is a key to success in motorsports – evidenced by the roster of drivers who will compete at Le Mans against the most challenging competition in endurance racing. We also welcome championship talents Ryan Briscoe and Robin Liddell to the Corvette Racing program for the opening two races of an exciting new chapter in sports car racing.”

Neither Taylor nor Westbrook could commit to the TUDOR Championship endurance races for Corvette Racing because they’ll be driving Corvette Daytona Prototypes in the P class for the full season. Taylor will team with brother Ricky and drive for father Wayne in the No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing entry, with Westbrook alongside Michael Valiante in the No. 90 Spirit of Daytona Corvette.

Briscoe has competed at Daytona with WTR’s DP in years past, while Liddell became available after the Stevenson Motorsports Camaro, campaigned in the Rolex Series’ GT class, will not continue into 2014. These are two solid hires by Corvette, and for Briscoe, continues his incredible month of December that has also included earning Chip Ganassi’s fourth full-time IndyCar seat and having his first child with wife Nicole.

Verstappen doesn’t want F1 season to end after recent run of form

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Max Verstappen says he is not ready for the 2017 Formula 1 season to come to an end after enjoying a run of strong form through the closing stages of the campaign.

Verstappen endured a rocky run of form through to the end of the European season that saw him suffer a number of reliability issues and score just a single podium finish, taking third in China back in April.

However, the Dutchman has rallied to score more points than any other driver in the last five races, including victories in Malaysia and Mexico, as well as a podium finish in Japan.

Verstappen heads into next weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix chasing a third win of the year to sign off, but joked he does not want the season to end just as he’s got into a good groove.

“We will, of course, try and end the season with a strong result in Abu Dhabi,” Verstappen said. “Last year was actually quite a good race after skipping a pit stop following a spin at Turn 1, it was hard to manage the tires to the end of the race but we did it and finished fourth.

“I would say that my favorite part of the track is at Turns 2 and 3, the fast left, right. It’s also very cool driving underneath the hotel and racing in the darkness with all the lights.

“The final sector at Yas Marina is actually quite technical so you have to be really precise there, but it should also be our strongest part of the track.

“There are quite a few overtaking opportunities to make the race interesting, before the long straight at the hairpin and then at the end of the straight under braking for the next chicane section.

“Abu Dhabi is the last race on the calendar, but I don’t actually want the season to end. I’m really fired up at the moment and I just want to keep going.

“The nice thing will be to spend some time with friends and family over the winter break and then I will look ahead to January and get back into training before it all starts again.”