Magnussen Wins Pole with Record-Shattering Run, Gavin Second with Sub-Record Time
BOWMANVILLE, Ontario, Canada, July 21, 2012 – Corvette Racing blew away the GT track records at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park today en route to qualifying first and second for Sunday's Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport. Jan Magnussen qualified the No. 3 Compuware Corvette C6.R on the GT pole with a time of 1:15.478 (117.285 mph), eclipsing the record set in 2008 by 1.385 seconds. Oliver Gavin also obliterated the previous mark, taking the second spot in the No. 4 Compuware Corvette C6.R with a blistering 1:15.782 lap (116.814 mph).
Magnussen's pole was his first in ALMS competition since October 2009, and the first for Corvette Racing since August 2010. The Dane was understandably elated after his record-setting run on the fast 2.5-mile Canadian circuit.
"I didn't think a GT car could go that quickly here!" he exclaimed. "It was a fantastic lap, and a great job by the team to give me this car to qualify. There is so much time to be gained when you get into the flow of this track. I actually surprised myself – on one of my laps, I didn't look at the time and went four tenths faster!
"We've been working around the race setup all this time – this really is our race setup with less fuel," Magnussen explained. "The car was so smooth and easy to drive. It felt like my mid-corner speed was up everywhere and I hit every mark. It felt super strong in Turn 5 where the car goes light over a crest. I nailed it just right by landing in the right position to get a good exit out of 5. I am so proud of Corvette Racing today!"
Gavin enjoyed a .229-second advantage over the third qualifier, the No. 55 BMW. "It was a great qualifying session for Corvette Racing and a fantastic lap by Jan – he absolutely nailed it," Gavin said. "The entire team has been working very hard, and it's great that we got a one-two in qualifying.
"I think a call I made with the setup toward the end of practice bit me in qualifying," he revealed. "I'm a little disappointed in myself for making that call. The Corvette C6.R really is spectacular here; the way it drives and feels, it's a joy to drive. The team has done an excellent job over the last few races, and I hope it continues tomorrow."
After three runner-up finishes in the last four ALMS races, Magnussen and co-driver Antonio Garcia are gunning for their first victory in Sunday's two-hour, 45-minute race.
"Starting on pole is the best you can wish for going into the race," Magnussen said. "Hopefully Antonio can go out there and control the pace. He picked up this track very quickly and is right on the pace. The competition is so fierce there is no room for mistakes."
"This is our first pole of the season, and I think it's appropriate that it came at Mosport," noted Corvette Racing program manager Doug Fehan. "Mosport has been very good to Corvette Racing in the past, and this track always seems to come through for Corvette. The other element today is a great tire developed by Michelin. Combine that with the work of this crew and the skill of our drivers, and this is the result – a definitive one-two for Corvette."