Corvette Racing’s line-up in its No. 4 Chevrolet Corvette C8.R will have a significantly different look for the 2021 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with the additions of Nick Tandy and Alexander Sims alongside long-time Corvette driver Tommy Milner.
Veteran Porsche racer Tandy steps into the role held by fellow Briton Oliver Gavin, who stepped away from full-time driving after 19 years with the program. A winner at practically every major sports car race around the world, Tandy has 15 career IMSA victories – all in GT racing – and has won the Rolex 24 At Daytona, the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring and Petit Le Mans. In addition, he is a past overall winner at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the 24 Hours of the Nurburgring and the 24 Hours of Spa.
“Since I’ve been racing in IMSA and at Le Mans, Corvette Racing has been the team that everyone looks up to. Many operations aspire to get to the level that Corvette Racing operates at. It’s something I’ve always looked at, and it’s impressed me,” said Tandy. “The fact that the opportunity arose where I could join the team and stay racing within IMSA is a dream opportunity. You look at the history of Corvette Racing, and it’s been a team that has consistently been in top-level motorsport. And not just competing but winning races and championships wherever they go. It’s an appealing aspect. I hope I can add something to the party and continue that successful legacy that Corvette Racing has. I’d very much like to be part of the next chapter.”
In Sims, Corvette Racing gets another proven race winner for the endurance races. Also from England, Sims was a five-time winner in IMSA competition in a two-year, full-season stint in 2017-18. He has a victory at Petit Le Mans to his credit along with 24-hour wins at Spa and the Nurburgring, along with two career starts at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
“During my two previous years in IMSA, it was clear the level that Corvette Racing is on,” Sims said. “I have such fantastic memories of battling with some of the Corvette guys, and some of those battles went against me! My appreciation and respect for Corvette Racing certainly increased. It’s a team that always seemed to be able to achieve a result, even if the track wasn’t one that suited its cars perfectly. If someone was going to make something out of a difficult situation, it usually was Corvette Racing. Now, to have a chance to be in that fold and be part of the program with the absolute pros on this team is really quite special.”
The other side of the Corvette Racing garage while the other stays intact from a driving perspective. Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor, the reigning GT Le Mans drivers champions, will team again in the No. 3 Mobil 1/SiriusXM Corvette C8.R with Nicky Catsburg back for another season with the pair for the team’s long-distance events in IMSA. Catsburg and Sims will be part of the program’s events for the Rolex 24 At Daytona, Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring and Petit Le Mans.
“It is nice to have some continuity that we can carry over into 2021,” said Garcia. “The season Jordan and I had was incredible with the championship and winning a lot of races. Things definitely won’t be easier in 2021 for us, but we do have a year of experience together and with the C8.R. Looking back at 2020, the only thing we missed out on was a good result in the long-distance races. We had the pace to win at Petit Le Mans, but we weren’t expected to get a win at Daytona to start the year and we had our suspension issue at the Sebring 12 Hours. Getting a real endurance win would be key as a next target for the C8.R.”
Added Taylor: “It’s definitely going to be difficult to top what we accomplished in 2020, but rolling into 2021 and learning everything we did with the C8.R, we’ll roll off stronger than we did this season. It will be great to be back with Antonio and Nicky. With having such a strong line-up, it’s good to keep things consistent. We know how each other works and how our driving styles are like. The chemistry there is very strong. It’ll be great to have Nick and Alexander coming in on the No. 4 Corvette. They can bring a fresh perspective as guys who have driven different cars and give us some insight on the strengths and weaknesses of the C8.R that maybe we are used by now, having driven for a year now. I think we’re setting up for a very strong 2021.”
Corvette Racing will open its 2021 season with the Roar Before the 24 from Jan. 22-24 and the Rolex 24 At Daytona on Jan. 30-31.