Meyrick’s Return, Still Z-mazed over New Corvette and More
By Jeff Olson
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – How long is too long? In Andy Meyrick’s case, five years.
Meyrick will return to racing in the U.S. next month when he joins United Autosports for the Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta. It will be the first time Meyrick, from Chester, England, has raced in the United States since 2016.
When the news dropped Thursday, Meyrick tweeted his enthusiasm about the opportunity:
— Andy Meyrick (@AndyMeyrick) October 28, 2021
Meyrick and Tom Gamble will join Niklas Kruetten in the United Autosports No. 2 Ligier JS P320 in the Le Mans Prototype 3 (LMP3) class for the 10-hour race Nov. 13 that finishes the 2021 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season.
Gamble, who will be making his IMSA debut, won the LMP3 championship last year in the European Le Mans Series. Like Meyrick, he expressed positive energy about Petit:
Let’s get it 🚀 pic.twitter.com/ai0SVyRCab
— Tom Gamble (@TomGamble23) October 28, 2021
Ollie’s Amazement of (and Contribution to) the New Corvette
When Oliver Gavin’s retirement from full-time racing was announced last year, he said he wasn’t done with Corvette.
“I feel there’s a future for me with the brand,” Gavin said in December 2020. “I’ve got 19 years with them, and I feel like there’s so much more.”
Boy, was he right.
Gavin, who won 51 races and seven IMSA class championships during his 19 years with Corvette Racing, was a key figure Tuesday in the introduction of the 2023 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 production model, which is drawing rave reviews for its power and style.
The last couple of days have been a blast with Tadge and his group. Brilliant job by the whole team.
I can’t wait to drive that naturally aspirated 670bhp V8 again, it’s a race car for the road. pic.twitter.com/6waSNwsPBr
— Oliver Gavin (@olivergavin) October 27, 2021
Burdon: ‘It is a privilege’
Looking for a solid conclusion to the 2021 season? Josh Burdon found it.
Burdon will join Jarett Andretti and Oliver Askew in the No. 36 Andretti Autosport Ligier JS P 320 in the LMP3 class for Motul Petit Le Mans.
“It is a privilege to have the opportunity to be driving for such an iconic team as Andretti,” Burdon said when the news broke Tuesday.
The Australian also shared his excitement with fans:
— Josh Burdon (@JoshBurdon) October 26, 2021
Pigot: ‘We Have What It Takes’
When Garett Grist and Ari Balogh finished on the podium in an IMSA Prototype Challenge race earlier this month at VIRginia International Raceway, they promised on Instagram that there was “lots more to come.”
The prediction came true. IndyCar and sports car veteran Spencer Pigot will join Grist and Balogh in the No. 33 Jr III Racing Ligier for Motul Petit Le Mans in the WeatherTech Championship’s LMP3 class.
Not a bad teammate to have. Pigot teamed with Oliver Askew, Gar Robinson and Scott Andrews to help Riley Motorsports win the LMP3 class in the Rolex 24 At Daytona in January, then followed it with a podium finish in the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Presented by Advance Auto Parts in March.
“We have what it takes to contend for a win and show what we are capable of together during Petit Le Mans,” said Pigot, who finished third in the Prototype class at Petit Le Mans with Marino Franchitti and Jonathan Bomarito for Mazda Team Joest in 2018.
Grist is a past Petit Le Mans winner, taking honors in the PC class in 2017 with Tomy Drissi and John Falb in a BAR1 entry.
BREAKING NEWS ⚡
— Jr III Racing (@JrIIIRacing) October 22, 2021
‘I Can’t Believe This Happened’
Connor Zilisch of Mooresville, North Carolina, will be the newest member of the Idemitsu Mazda MX-5 Cup Presented by BFGoodrich Tires field in 2023 after winning a scholarship valued at $110,000 during a two-day test and evaluation process last week at Sebring International Raceway.
“I can’t believe this happened,” Zilisch said. “I can’t thank Mazda enough. This is an amazing opportunity to forward my progress in the motorsports world and I’m so excited to get to work.”
Bryce Cornet of Norman, Oklahoma, will receive a $75,000-value scholarship, and Laura Hayes of Asheville, North Carolina, won the $75,000 Women’s Initiative Scholarship.
Conor Zilisch is Big Winner at #MX5Cup Shootout
— Mazda MX-5 Cup (@MazdaMX5Cup) October 25, 2021