Big weekend for Chevy upcoming in Austin


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 disappointed by delay of video game but aiming to launch at start of 2024

IndyCar video game 2024

An IndyCar executive said there is “absolutely” disappointment that its long-awaited video game recently was delayed beyond its target date, but the series remains optimistic about the new title.

“Well, I don’t know how quick it will be, but the whole situation is important to us,” Penske Entertainment president and CEO Mark Miles said during a news conference Monday morning to announce IndyCar’s NTT title sponsorship. “Motorsport Games has spent a lot of money, a lot of effort to create an IndyCar title. What we’ve seen of that effort, which is not completely obvious, is very reassuring.

“I think it’s going to be outstanding. That’s our shared objective, that when it is released, it’s just widely accepted. A great credit both to IndyCar racing, the Indianapolis Motor Speedway, something that our fans love.”

In June 2021, IndyCar announced a new partnership with Motorsport Games to create and distribute an IndyCar video game for the PC and Xbox and PlayStation consoles in 2023.

But during an earnings call last week, Motorsport Games said the IndyCar game had been delayed to 2024 to ensure high quality.

Somewhat compounding the delay is that IndyCar’s license for iRacing expired after the end of the 2022 season because of its exclusive agreement with Motorsport Games.

That’s resulted in significant changes for IndyCar on iRacing, which had provided a high-profile way for the series to stay visible during its 2020 shutdown from the pandemic. (Players still can race an unbranded car but don’t race on current IndyCar tracks, nor can they stream).

That’s helped ratchet up the attention on having a video game outlet for IndyCar.

“I wish we had an IndyCar title 10 years ago,” said Miles, who has been working with the organization since 2013. “We’ve been close, but we’ve had these I think speed bumps.”

IndyCar is hopeful the Motorsports Game edition will be ready at the start of 2024. Miles hinted that beta versions could be unveiled to reporters ahead of the time “to begin to show the progress in a narrow way to make sure we’ve got it right, to test the progress so that we’re ready when they’re ready.”

It’s been nearly 18 years since the release of the most recent IndyCar video game for console or PC.

“(We) better get it right,” Miles said. “It’s something we’re very close to and continue to think about what it is to make sure we get it over the line in due course.”