Gavin races to a top Le Mans time

Corvette Racing, 24 Hours of Le Mans in Le Mans, France, June 11-12, 2011. Compuware Corvette C6.R #73, driven by Olivier Beretta, Tommy Milner and Antonio Garcia won the GTE class, completing 314 laps and finishing two minutes and 29 seconds ahead of the runner-up Ferrari. Today’s victory was the seventh class win at Le Mans for Corvette Racing, and its first in the GTE Pro category. It came as Chevrolet celebrates its 100th anniversary and the 10th anniversary of the team’s first Le Mans victory in 2001. C6.R #74, driven by Oliver Gavin, Jan Magnussen, and Richard Westbrook, led the GTE class for nearly 16 hours but retired following a crash in the 17th hour. (Richard Prince/GM Racing Photo).

MOTOR-RACING: Former Sharnbrook Upper School pupil Oliver Gavin ended the official Le Mans Test Day by posting the fastest GTE-Pro time in the afternoon session.

The 29-year-old, who drives for Corvette Racing, was only edged to second overall in the combined morning/afternoon session by just under a tenth of a second as his fastest time of 3.58.971mins was quicker than last year’s qualifying time, and bodes well for the 24-Hour race in two weeks time.

He said: “We made some changes to the suspension and gearbox between the morning and afternoon sessions, and the track was coming in once some rubber had been laid down and it was cleaned up a bit.

“The balance of the car was good.

“We didn’t get a run on new tyres because of rain and yellow flags, but they were reasonably fresh and I wanted to see what we could do.

“I think the chassis is very close and the engine department is making big steps forward.

“I’m with the best team in the pit lane and the crew has done a stellar job of preparing the cars.”

Oliver shared the running of the number 74 Corvette C6R with Tommy Milner for the test sessions as their endurance team-mate, Richard Westbrook, was in the USA on Grand-Am duty.

Gavin will be back in Le Mans for technical scrutineering on Monday in preparation for the race on June 16-17.

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