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Historic

ZL1 is the rarest option code ever produced for a Corvette. It means that the engine block is manufactured in aluminium for weight reduction, and a gain of 80 kgs on the front end of the car, in comparison between a complete 427 ci iron engine and the ZL1.

The first European owner for this option was Henri Greder for the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 1970, due to his great relationship with Zora Arkus Duntov. The result was astonish, Henri finished in 6th position overall in 1970. Unfortunately the Porsche managers claimed to the ACO Official saying that the distance effected by the Corvette was not sufficent in relation with the displacement engine. The verdict fall and the Corvette was not classified. But it’s very interesting to note that a GT raced by a private team, finished the 24 hours race just behind two Ferraris 512S and three Porsches prototypes !!! MORE...

you can see all pictures of the total restoration by double clicking on the STEP BY STEP RESTORATION

News 2012 - 2011 - 2010 - 2009 - 2008

 16.10.2010  
No chance but nothing serious
We are now at the end of the 2010 season at the fabulous Paul Ricard Track. We hope to continue on the GT category winning way for this last race.

Free training works great but we did with used tyres and there is no question to be as fast as our opponents. Because they run with slicks for the time being. That's the rule.

For qualification runs 1 and 2, we are the 5th positon without troubles. We are a little bit faster but still with used tyres.
In the evening we were invited for diner for the « 100 years of Paul Ricard ». This exceptional event happened in the Mistral big hall ! An emotional movie showing the Paul Ricard story with superb pictures of the track building, Paul's paints, his Embiez and Bendor Islands. His daughter and grand daughter were present for this very nice evening which closed at midnight.

Back now to racing ! for the race we put fresh tyres and enough fuel for one hour racing, wheather is nice for a great race !
Rolling start behind the pace car, after his return to the pit lane the race is on, I immediately passed the Porsche who was on fourth position and I'm now near the other Porsche (The Toblerone drived by Jean Michel Martin an ex super pro driver), on the next lap I passed him just before the Verrerie chicane during braking ! then drove very fast to chase the Porsche Brun and the Sabates Corvette who is in first position.

Suddenly smoke appears in the cockpit, I immediately I looked at the gauges and in the mirror to see if I let oil on the track but I could not see anything and the pit marshalls did not show me a problem. Then I passed in front of the pit lane and the smoke intensify in the cockpit so I decided to slow down and to stop at the beginning of the Mistral Straight line, I was third at this time !

Once back in the pits, Christophe noticed that it was only a broken valve cover gasket and oil drops on the headers. Nothing bad but I was a little bit frustated because something good could be better today. But that's racing and we will be back in 2011 !
 14.07.2010  
Winning return
LMC 2010 is a fantastic event, not only for the quality of all present cars, but also for a perfect organisation. Thanks to the entire Patrick Peter staff !

The most difficult thing to manage is the very warm air temperature reaching near 40 degrees c. and this will not be without consequences for al the drivers and engines !
But our ZL1 is so reliable ! for sure we had to have a consistent look at the gauges and drink a lot of water before and during the race !

The first qualifying session was effected perfectly. This track s so nice, despite the hot wheather. I must be careful not to go too fast, the Corvette show me that she can go much faster, rolling through the curves at high speed in each lap is a real pleasure. But the oil and water temperature gauges show me high temp, so I have to slow down and finish the session on a low speed.
Same for the second qualifying session, despite that it was effected during the evening, temperature is cooler but still warm and I have to cool down my driving, and our goal is to finish at the best position under the checkered flag on Sunday afternoon, but our Corvette is fast and we know it, we are first in GT category between protos !

First race was difficult due to the fact that most drivers drove very fast with agressive driving despite the very hot temperature. You could easily imagine how it was in the cockpit ! The temperature is high and driving is hard with the helmet, gloves and driving suits. Many things to manage at the same time. To stay in front of the GT caterogy but between protos. After 4 laps I saw that the oil temp is at 120 degrees c. and water at 110 degrees c. I decided to stay under 5500 rpm during the next couple of laps and it works fine for the temp. Then I push again until 6000 rpm i.o. 6500 rpm and for the frst time I finished 1 lap behing the leader and first in GT category.

Second race during the night, what a good feeling, temperature is cooler, no more strees about the hot weather except the night. Hervé Regout Porsche 910 is just behind me, we have already talked earlier beofre the race not to trouble ourselves on track. I'm faster than him on straight line and he brake later than me so we are very careful ! Timings began to be be better and my best lap was 4.42 sec, I finished 1st in GT again.

Third race and last race of the week end, unfortunately in beginning of the afternoon under a very hot weather. Our principal opponent is the John and B Ferrari Daytona GRIV, he was faster on each lap but not enough to catch me, I pushed a little bit harder and reach the 4.40 sec. i.e. 6 sec. Faster than in 2008 but without reaching the car's and pilot limits. No mechanical failure nor pilot driving mistake ! Result, we finished 1st in GT and 8th overall.

All pics and movies available on "Résults of 2010"

This 24 hours track is really the best and the most exciting track in the whole world.
We will be there in 2012 !
 08.07.2010  
LEMANS CLASSIC 2010
We are now technically and mentally ready ! Christophe Lambercy whow knows now very well the ZL/1 will be helped by his son Andreas and Yves Duchêne.

The technical problems located in the beginning of the season are fixed. Modifications as to shorten the oil radiator lines and the oil baffle efficency. The return of the front air dam, the steering column was shortened and a perfect steering wheel adjusted is done.
We are now ready for Le Mans Classic !
 13.06.2010  
LEMANS CLASSIC TARGET
We are now at 30 days before the fantastic Lemans Classic Event. We have again the great opportunity to participate for the second time to the race and to defend our 2008 first place on the GT category and the 7th place overall.

"Femme d'Aujourd'hui" will have the number 23 on grid 5. We still have minor modifications to effect for this track, like a lower rear end ratio, refix the front air damm, improve the brake cooling system and shortened the steering column. Otherwise, no particular problems.
Consequently, this is with serenity that we will be there.
Rendez-vous now at Lemans Classic on the next July 8, 9, 10, 2010 for an exciting racing week end.
 10.05.2010  
Spa Francorchamps race results
After two month of intensive efforts, finally we are at the Spa-Francorchamps track for the second CER event. 65 race cars registered, with 14 race cars in the GT1 category.

Friday morning was cold, rainy and windy with only 4 degrees c., as we consider that we have to brake-in the camshaft, this bad wheather is welcome. In same time, for the first time, we will test our new rain tyres, which are our Good Year tyres modified. After a first test session in which everything worked well, we were a little bit disapointed by the lack of grip of our rain tyres... In the afternoon on the first qualifying round, we decided to change with dry tyres, as we know that the trajectory is dry. We noticed that all the other race cars are still with rain tyres, which is a mistake due to the fact that the track is dry. Immediately, I adopt for a fast lap times and I noted that we have reach our goal, our top speed is now higher on each gear at 6500 rpm instead of 6000 rpm with our previous camshaft. After a few laps and pit stops for controlling tyres pressure and engine temperature the first qualifying session ended with a best lap on 2 min. 49 sec. which classified us on the 2nd position on the GT1 category.

On the second qualification run we did not go faster (2 min. 49sec.) but we tried to have a constent fast laps time avoiding to go too fast , and we also tested the best tyre pressure for the race.
Bernard Moreau just took the pole (same as in 2009 Dijon race), just followed by another Porsche RSR 3.0 L driven by M.Meyers (both Porsches have slicks tyres and our Corvette don't ! ) which is not in our favour for this championship. due to the fact that the rules for our car authorize only racing tyres which are not slicks, but the lap timing gap between the two Porsches and our Corvette is very thin and we will talk about it later in the season ! Consequently, we are in third position in the GT1 category.

The race started at 3 pm, our fuel tank was full, we have new fresh tyres, and the track and air temperature are at 13 degrees c, almost perfect for us. A good start for us, the two Porsches stood on the right side of the track in order to be not pass, for the three first laps all three cars were very close from each other, then this gap stood until come the one minute pit stop . Christophe indicate to me the pit stop for the next lap. I stopped and returned after the one minute stop and effect a very fast lap, when I arrived along the pits, the two Porsches reenter in the track side by side just in front of me, which did not permit to me to pass them, I was faster than them but I did not absolutely tried to pass and stood behind them. If I was 2 sec. faster, I had the opportunity to be in front of them for the rest of the race !. Moreau is now a little bit faster but I stood just behind Meyer's car and our two cars were now nose to tail ! I tried again to pass him but he stood on the left side and then in the middle of the track which did not permit to pass, I can't do anything and I think that he is a very good driver ! He is a little faster in the "raidillon" and then I'm faster in the straight line, he went on the left side and then I tried to pass on the right but I have not enough space to pass, but in the last lap a fuel pressure failure obliged him to stop in the grass, consequently, I was now in the second position at the finish line, but as I arrived in the paddock I learned that I had to do a pit stop and go because I "so called" left the pits less than one minute during the "one minute stop" . At this time, I'm still in the second position in the CER classification. As we know the fight was not equal with the competitors which race with
slicks, but I'm so happy to have followed the two slicks equipped Porsche during all the race with my racing tyres !

Congratulations to Erick De Doncker which did not finally drove our Corvette. He raced the VDS Team Ford GT1 in the Le Mans Series SPA 1000 km and won the GT1 category in front of the two other Matech Team Ford GT1 which we also congratulate them. A very good and promising result before the 24 hours of Le Mans in next June.
 02.05.2010  
April 7th, unfortunately it was not possible for us to race in the first CER meeting at the Paul
Ricard, an error in the right camshaft choice did not allowed us to go to this meeting two
days before it ! We were very disappointed, after three weeks of hard working, but
the Team did not stop his effort and continue to work.

May 1st, the new mechanical camshaft is now into the ZL1 engine, we must go to fire up the
engine on Monday May 3rd, and then effect a road test before we go to
Spa Francorchamps on Wednesday 5th. Our friend and local driver Eric DeDoncker
will join the ZL1 Team for the CER Event and will also participate to the Le Mans Series
1000 km event at the wheel of VDS Team Ford GT1 in the same week end.

A great and very exciting week end is waiting for us.
 06.04.2010  
Paul Ricard test Result
First of all, we welcomed our new colleague Christophe Lambercy, who will discover the race track world and the ZL1 Corvette.

Unfortunately, only 13 laps covered before a falling oil pressure, just after exiting of the "S de la verrerie" !! then back to the pits without apparent engine failure. We tried to understand why ? We tested the gauge and the sending unit, but they working well. Then we took out the oil pressure hose, and activated the engine starter and noticed that no oil is going out of the hose ! We immediately understood that the problem is badder than we expected, so we decided to come back to our headquarters in Geneva.

We discovered almost two oil liters in th! e oil canister accumulated in only 13 laps ! It's evident that there is too much compression internally in the engine and that the cancellation of the oil return from the oil canister to the oil pan was not a good idea. We did not found any internal damages, but for the good order sake we decided to put new crankshaft bearings and added mechanical lifters instead of the hydraulic ones which will added more revs to the engine.

We, then, reinstalled the engine in the car on April 6 and hope to be on Wednesday at the Paul Ricard Circuit for the 1st 2010 CER Race.
 08.03.2010  
Hello Race Fans,

The 2010 Season will begin soon, and we are already registered for the first three CER Championship Races (see the 2010 schedule on our homepage).

On the next 18 of March, we will effect a test day on the Paul Ricard race track. During the winter, we have effected some technical improvment, but the most ones will be done during the season.
A dry sump will be added for the CER races and a new camshaft will be installed which will help to increase the maximum engine rpm and in same time our top speed.
 
 
 

Next race:

LEMANS-CLASSIC

6-8 july 2012

 
 
 
 

 

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