Final ever American Le Mans Series race this weekend
Braselton, GA, Wednesday, 17 October 2013: Jan Magnussen and teammate Antonio Garcia have the opportunity to clinch the final ever American Le Mans Series GT driver's championship this weekend at Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta.
The Danish/Spanish Corvette Racing combo enters this weekend with a 16 point lead in the championship. To clinch the title, they need to finish seventh or better. Last year the duo - teamed with Jordan Taylor - finished second in the season-closing event.
With three victories to date in 2013, the No.3 Corvette Racing team has the best winning record in the championship - a remarkable performance considering they left the opening race at Sebring with zero points. At the last round of the championship Magnussen and Garcia finished third at Virginia International Raceway.
Chevrolet and Corvette Racing have already secured the Manufacturer's and Team's GT championship - clinching both awards at VIR.
Testing kicks off at Road Atlanta today with official practice underway on Thursday with three sessions including the traditional night practice. Qualifying will be held at 2:05pm on Friday. The Petit Le Mans event goes green at 11:30am on Saturday.
JAN MAGNUSSEN Q&A
DOES YOUR MINDSET CHANGE HEADING INTO THE FINAL RACE?
"We have a good lead in the championship. If we don't score any points, BMW needs to be in the top-three to win.
"It's a long race and we have to see what happens. I think our plan will be to run our own race. Once we hit 70 percent of the race, we can see where we are and what we have to do.
"If at that point, we need to do something pretty drastic, we'll do it. But hopefully we can just finish the race and relax and think about the championship.
"The 70 percent mark is going to be very important. Once we hit that mark, we'll know what we will need to do. Before that, it's hard to say, unless the No. 56 car has a problem."
"If we can have a good, clean race up until that point near the leaders or at least around where the No. 56 car is, that would be good for us. After that, we'll do what we have to do."
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS ENTERING THE FINAL ALMS RACE?
"It's with mixed feelings that we go to Petit Le Mans for the final ALMS race. It's been a fantastic championship; I've always loved the ALMS and the atmosphere.
"The new series has the possibility of being absolutely fantastic as well. We'll just have to wait and see. But I've always really enjoyed racing here. I'm sad to see that part of it go away but everybody is going to be involved with the new series, so it's not really a goodbye to anything."
WHAT WOULD IT MEAN TO FINISH UP THE ALMS WITH A CHAMPIONSHIP?
"But it's still far from over. There's a whole Petit Le Mans between us and the championship at the moment.
"To come away with the championship would be absolutely fantastic. Who knows, hopefully the race on Saturday evolves in a way where we can race for the win in the category."
HOW HAS ANTONIO CONTRIBUTED THIS YEAR AS A CO-DRIVER?
"Antonio has been fantastic all year. It really shows that it's our second year together. We're working better as a team.
"Last year was a little bit of a problem for him as he went to a lot of new tracks. But that's not the case this year so we've been able to work really hard from the beginning.
"The results have shown what we've been able to do."
WHAT HAS THE REACTION BEEN TO CLINCHING THE TEAMS AND MANUFACTURERS TITLES ONE RACE EARLY?
"That was the number one priority for us all year. With that out of the way, we can go for the drivers' championship.
"Up until now, the focus had been on the manufacturers' championship. Now it's different.
"Our objective for the year has been reached by the team. We can continue to fight for our championship as well."
IT'S ALSO YOUR SON KEVIN'S LAST ROUND OF THE WORLD SERIES BY RENAULT SEASON. WHAT WOULD IT MEAN FOR HIM TO WIN THE CHAMPIONSHIP AS WELL?
"Kevin also has a chance to be a champion on Saturday. If it doesn't happen for him then, he'll have another chance on Sunday.
"It could mean that the both of us would win championships on Saturday, which would be absolutely fantastic. If it does happen, it could be very, very special."