Big weekend for Chevy upcoming in Austin

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A year ago at Austin, Antonio Garcia delivered one of the sports car drives of the year, to hold off an SRT Viper and a BMW Z4 en route to winning the American Le Mans Series GT class.

Garcia is among those looking to defend the victory for Corvette ahead of this weekend’s TUDOR United SportsCar Championship and FIA World Endurance Championship races.

Corvette won both the GRAND-AM Rolex Series race here in March 2013 (Alex Gurney and Jon Fogarty for GAINSCO/Bob Stallings Racing) and Garcia and Jan Magnussen took the ALMS GT win as mentioned above in September.

Magnussen returns this race after injuries suffered at Virginia, where Jordan Taylor stepped into the No. 3 Corvette C7.R last-minute.

Corvette has its usual fleet of four Daytona Prototypes (No. 5 Action Express, No. 10 Wayne Taylor Racing, No. 31 Marsh, No. 90 Spirit of Daytona) cars entered in the Prototype class, and its two GT Le Mans class Corvette C7.Rs.

The C7.Rs have been the beneficiary of a pre-race Balance of Performance adjustment from IMSA, with a 15 kg weight break and a 0.3mm larger air restrictor coming.

Chevrolet has a 19-point lead in the P class Manufacturer’s Championship; meanwhile it trails in the GTLM category by two to Porsche. Porsche has four cars entered this weekend in GTLM and that will make the task all the more difficult for Chevrolet.

“(Last year’s race) was probably one of my best. The team was a big part of that,” Garcia explained pre-race. “Both Jan and I benefitted from really good strategy and pit stops. Everything really came together including the last stop. The execution was great and all I had to do was defend; I was out front and the deal was I never had to pass anyone. It was a great race and the key race where everything started to go our way toward the championship.

“This year, we don’t know how strong we will be compared to the rest of the GTLM field. The last two races have been difficult to keep up with the rest of the field and be competitive. All we can do is be as prepared as possible.”

In addition to the IMSA commitments in both the TUDOR Championship and Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge, Corvette Racing also makes its first non-Le Mans FIA WEC appearance with the all-American lineup of Jordan and Ricky Taylor, and Tommy Milner in the team’s No. 65 Corvette C7.R.

IndyCar entry lists for Harvest GP at Indianapolis Motor Speedway

IndyCar entry lists Indianapolis
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There are 25 drivers on the NTT IndyCar Series entry lists at Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course with a few new yet familiar faces for the Oct. 2-3 race weekend.

Four-time champion Sebastien Bourdais will make his season debut in the No. 14 Dallara-Chevrolet (shifting Dalton Kellett to the No. 41) with AJ Foyt Racing, which he is joining full time next season. James Hinchcliffe, who had run three races with Andretti Autosport, will return in place of Zach Veach in the No. 26 Dallara-Honda. Helio Castroneves will drive Arrow McLaren SP’s No. 7 Dallara-Chevy for Oliver Askew, who is out with concussion-like symptoms.

Sage Karam, who has two IndyCar starts this year at IMS (the road course on July 4 and the Indy 500 on Aug. 23), also will return to the series in Dreyer & Reinbold’s No. 24 Dallara-Chevrolet.

HARVEST GP ENTRY LISTS: Friday l Saturday

Friday and Saturday of the Harvest GP presented by GMR will mark the second and third races this season on Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s 14-turn, 2.439-mile road course. While the July 4 race on the circuit was 80 laps, Friday’s distance is 85 laps, and Saturday will be a 75-lap event.

Championship leader Scott Dixon led 26 of 80 laps to win the July 4 race at the IMS road course. With three races remaining in the series, the five-time series champion enters with a 72-point lead on Josef Newgarden.

Click here to see who’s on the IndyCar entry lists in Race 1 and in Race 2 for the Harvest GP presented by GMR at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course.


START TIMES AND TV INFO FOR INDYCAR AT INDIANAPOLIS MOTOR SPEEDWAY ROAD COURSE (all times ET):

Thursday

IndyCar NTT Series practice: 2:25-3:40 p.m., NBC Sports Gold

IndyCar qualifying, Race 1: 6:20 p.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

Friday

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 1: 3:30 p.m. (green flag, 5 p.m.), USA Network, NBC Sports Gold

Saturday

—IndyCar qualifying: 10:20 a.m. (two groups/12 minutes apiece), NBC Sports Gold

—IndyCar Harvest Grand Prix, Race 2: 2:30 p.m (green flag, 2:31 p.m.)., NBC, NBC Sports Gold