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Topic: CORVETTE RACING AT SPA: Home Hyperpole for Van Rompuy

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CORVETTE RACING AT SPA: Home Hyperpole for Van Rompuy (1/1)
 5/10/24 5:34pm
cor123
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Press Release:

CORVETTE RACING AT SPA: Home Hyperpole for Van Rompuy

No. 81 TF Sport Corvette to start on fourth row in LMGT3 for Six Hours of Spa

 
STAVELOT, Belgium (May 7, 2024) – Tom Van Rompuy and TF Sport’s No. 81 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 GT3.R will start on the fourth row of the LMGT3 grid for the Six Hours of Spa Saturday as the team looks to add more FIA World Endurance Championship points to its total.

    
On his home circuit of Spa-Francorchamps, Van Rompuy led the team’s effort in Friday’s time trials with the eighth-quickest lap in the GT3 Hyperpole session – 2:22.215 (110.169 mph). It marked the second time in three races that the No. 81 Z06 GT3.R advanced to top-10 qualifying this season. The Hyperpole segment was interrupted by a lengthy red flag which took the momentum and life out of the Van Rompuy’s tires for the restart.


As is the case for the full season, Van Rompuy – sixth in the first qualifying session to make Hyperpole – will team with Rui Andrade and Corvette factory driver Charlie Eastwood. They were the highest-finishing TF trio in the previous WEC round at Imola.


Hiroshi Koizumi will start 16th Saturday at Spa in the No. 82 Corvette Z06 GT3.R that he drives with Corvette factory driver Daniel Juncadella and Rui Andrade.


The TF Corvettes are coming off seventh- and eighth-place finishes in the previous round at Imola, proof of the deep and competitive field of GT3 cars in the first year of the class in WEC. Pre-event testing paid immediate dividends for the TF Sport team as Juncadella set the fastest time in class not just for the first session but of all three practices combined.


The hope is that the speed of the Corvettes plus TF Sport’s history in WEC at Spa – six consecutive years on the podium in class – will help put at least one of the Z06 GT3.Rs in the top-three by the end of Saturday’s race.


The FIA WEC’s Six Hours of Spa is set for 1 p.m. Central European Time / 7 a.m. Eastern Time on Saturday. MotorTrend will air live television coverage from 6:30-8 a.m. and noon-1:30 p.m. ET. Streaming coverage of the race will be available through the FIA WEC app and the MAX app in the U.S. Radio Le Mans will stream audio coverage of the race plus final practice and qualifying. 


TF SPORT DRIVER QUOTES

TOM VAN ROMPUY, NO. 81 CHEVROLET CORVETTE Z06 GT3.R: “I was a little bit disappointed and I think we could have done a little bit better. Qualifying itself was quite OK, but in Hyperpole I prepped my tires to go for a really good push lap right away. I used a small amount of the peak of tire and then the red flag came. So one heat cycle was done and we cooled down. After that I was not able to get the tires in a good window to push for a good quali lap. In that way it’s a bit disappointing. The positive thing is that it is a six-hour race and we starting already in the points. The car is in a good place and the team did a good job on that. I’m looking forward to starting the race and moving up a few places.”


CHARLIE EASTWOOD, NO. 81 CHEVROLET CORVETTE Z06 GT3.R: “Things have been pretty good. We are making massive steps from Qatar to Imola to here, just as a team continuing to learn the Corvette. Throughout testing, we were trying a lot of stuff internally among ourselves. So the timing screen didn’t look amazing, but we knew had the pace in qualifying. Once we had the red flag, we didn’t seem to be able to switch on the tires again in Hyperpole. The gap is a little bigger than we would have liked so we need to look into that. Versus Imola, I think we are stronger than we were there. All going to plan, but we need to get to the front and try to keep with the front of the pack.”


DANIEL JUNCADELLA, NO. 82 CHEVROLET CORVETTE Z06 GT3.R (after Free Practice 1): "It was a very good start to the weekend for our Corvette. We were testing here a month ago, so that obviously paid its dividends in getting a kick-start ahead of our competition, I believe. The track is still developing. I think there has been some rainy days in the past week, so it was a very dirty track. But balance-wise the car felt good. I'm very happy with how the first session and day went. Obviously it's still early. I don't think it means that much to be up front, but I'd rather be up front than at the back and questioning ourselves. So it was very positive. FP2 was pretty decent too. When we are there or thereabouts at the front, it's always a good sign and gives us confidence. We didn't have any setbacks. The team worked very well around the car, and my teammates did a good job as well. We're looking good for the weekend."


LMGT3 Drivers Standings

1. Aliaksandr Malykhin/Joel Sturm/Klaus Bachler – 54

2. Augusto Farfus/Darren Leung/Sean Gelael – 37

3. Alex Riberas/Daniel Mancinelli/Ian James – 37

4. Ahmad Al Harthy/Maxime Martin/Valentino Rossi – 36

5. Clement Mateu/Erwan Bastard/Marco Sorensen – 24

9. Charlie Eastwood/Rui Andrade/Tom Van Rompuy – 7

10. Daniel Juncadella/Hiroshi Koizumi/Sebastien Baud – 6

 
LMGT3 Teams Standings

1. No. 92 Manthey PureRxcing – 54

2. No. 31 Team WRT – 37

3. No. 27 Heart of Racing Team – 37

4. No. 46 Team WRT – 36

5. No. 777 D’Station Racing – 24

9. No. 81 TF Sport – 7

10. No. 82 TF Sport – 6

 
CORVETTE RACING BY THE NUMBERS: Spa-Francorchamps

• 3: Previous starts for Corvette Racing-affiliated entries at Spa-Francorchamps. Last year’s runner-up finish in GTE Am was the program’s best result

• 4: Generations of Corvette ZR1 (C3, C4, C6 and C7). The eighth-generation Corvette ZR1 will be revealed this summer

• 5: Corvette Z06 GT3.Rs in competition this weekend – Nos. 3 and 4 of Corvette Racing by Pratt Miller Motorsports and No. 13 of AWA at Laguna Seca, No. 81 and No. 82 of TF Sport at Spa

• 6: Consecutive podium finishes for TF Sport in the Six Hours of Spa

• 7: Different drivers to compete for Corvette Racing at Spa since 2021. That number will nearly double to 13 when TF Sport races in WEC this weekend

• 27: Tracks at which Corvette Racing has won races – Baltimore, Charlotte Motor Speedway, COTA, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park/Mosport, Daytona, Detroit, Houston, Laguna Seca, Le Mans, Lime Rock, Long Beach, Miami, Mid-Ohio, Monza, Portimão, Portland, Road America, Road Atlanta, Sebring, Sonoma, St. Petersburg, Texas, Trois Rivieres, Utah, VIR, Washington DC and Watkins Glen

• 47: Number of drivers in Corvette Racing entries since 1999 – Bryan Sellers and Scott Smithson being the latest in GT World Challenge America. Rui Andrade, Sebastien Baud, Hiroshi Koizumi and Tom Van Rompuy joined the list at Qatar to open the WEC season

• 71: Years since Corvette was introduced to the world on Jan. 17, 1953 in New York City. A total of 300 cars were produced that year

• 127: Victories worldwide for Corvette Racing – 115 in North America, nine at Le Mans and three in the FIA WEC

• 290: Event starts by Corvette Racing since 1999

• 376,569.57: Total number of racing miles completed by Corvette Racing entries since 1999. To put that in perspective, Corvette Racing is more than halfway to the distance traveled by Apollo 13 – the longest manned spaceflight in history: 622,268 miles

 
Corvette Racing at Spa

2021

No. 63 Corvette C8.R: Antonio Garcia/Oliver Gavin – 4th in GTE Pro

 
2022

No. 64 Corvette C8.R: Tommy Milner/Nick Tandy – 4th in GTE Pro

 
2023

No. 33 Corvette C8.R: Nicky Catsburg/Ben Keating/Nico Varrone – 2nd in GTE Am 


Ryan Smith
Judy Kouba Dominick



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