By Jan Magnussen
Watkins Glen was another race where it was all about execution. Considering we qualified last but came out of the weekend with a podium and a slight increase in our points lead – that was all down to teamwork.
We were on the back foot early at the back of the pack and Antonio had a spin at the chicane. He certainly made up for it later and was flying late in the race, setting our fastest lap.
The guys in the pits at Corvette Racing did another stellar job and that was a big help in getting us back into contention.
We grew our points lead by a single point but it is getting crowded behind us. The level of competition just keeps getting tougher and tougher and we know we have to keep working very hard to stay competitive.
There is still a very long way to go in the championship fight but it is nice to be on top of the points at this stage.
Those wins at Sebring and COTA have been a huge help but the key to the title is making sure we’re in contention every week.
Whatever track we go to there are going to be different teams that roll off the truck with that right set-up – last weekend it was the BMW guys who made it happen. Hopefully this week it will be us.
Last year the Corvette was really strong and Canadian Tire Motorsport Park and Antonio stuck it on the pole.
We led a lot of laps too but the cards didn’t fall our way in the strategy and we ended up on the podium in third place.
I always love going to this race as Corvette Racing is obviously a huge fan favorite up there thanks to Ron Fellows.
It is another one of these tracks that requires huge commitment, but there are consequences when you get it wrong.
That is one of the big things guys from Europe take a little while to get used to when they come to the US. If you’ve grown up on those F1-style tracks with huge run off, then coming to Mosport can open your eyes.
Going flat out through the blind turn two this weekend certainly gets your heart racing. One of the great things about Ron Fellows being part of the ownership group in Canada is they have made fantastic improvements from a safety perspective, but not ruined the character of the track.
Mosport is of course where I got my first ever victory in the US with Panoz back in 1999 with Johnny O’Connell. It was the first ever victory for the Panoz roadster and we actually finished 1-2.
I had no idea back then that I’d end up winning so many races with Johnny O with the Corvette.
He and I actually have won three times here in Canada and I also won here with Olly Gavin in 2011 and Antonio in 2014.
2010 was also a pretty good year. I got the pole and ended up with fastest lap
I have been really lucky to be with my “family” at Corvette Racing for 14 years now.
We’ve had some great success over the years and we’re working out tails off to try to get more wins on the board in the second half of the season.