With the curtain having come down on the 2008 American Le Mans Series season, Corvette Racing will now turn its focus to 2009 when the team will make the gradual move into the GT2 class of the series.
The team announced earlier this year that it was to bring its GT1 programme to a close next season, with the team set to continue to use its current car through the first half of the season and at the Le Mans 24 Hours, with the new GT2 car slated to debut at Mid-Ohio in August.
The car will revolve around a next-generation C6.R that again will compete on cellulosic E85. The car will have steel brakes, a smaller wing and a little less horsepower than the current GT1 car although it will look exactly the same as the current GT1 machine.
"The engineering work is completed and we'll be starting in the next week to ten days actually assembling the car," Corvette Racing programme manager Doug Fehan said. "We've done the simulations on it. We know what the rules are and we know what the other cars are capable of. When we finally come out we'll do the best job we possibly can."
While the team has run without any major competition in GT1 in recent years, the move to GT2 will see Corvette going head-to-head with the likes of Porsche, Ferrari and BMW and Fehan said he expected competition to be tough.
"Don't look for us to dominate right out of the shoot - it's not going not to happen," he admitted. "Rear-engine and mid-engine cars have a distinct advantage in that classification. We know the challenges that lie ahead for a front-engine car and we are prepared to meet them.
“Let's not forget too that we spent the first two years struggling with the GT1 car. It took us awhile to get us up to speed and we expect that same kind of learning curve. We are prepared for it."
However, Fehan added that the aim was to be winning the class as soon as possible, with the Corvette squad focused fully on taking the fight to its rivals
"We want to dominate as quickly as we possibly can," he concluded. "This team is not a team that likes to sit back and take their time. Everything we do from unloading the trucks to packing up is a race, and that's the spirit we bring forward every day.
“We want to take forward the heritage we've created for Corvette. We've worked pretty darn hard over the last ten years to change the image of that car on a global basis and we plan to uphold that image as we go forward."