Eric Curran and Boris Said are set to fly the American flag in Europe this year, as part of a factory effort with the new Callaway Corvette C7 GT3-R.
The longtime friends and co-drivers will share the wheel of a Callaway Competition-run entry in selected GT3 races throughout Europe, including rounds in ADAC GT Masters, the British GT Championship, VLN as well as the possibility of some Blancpain GT Series races.
“I’ve been friends with the Callaway guys for 20 years and Boris used to drive for them back in the day,” Curran told Sportscar365. “Callaway is from Connecticut and I’m from Massachusetts. I used to go there when I was a kid.
“They’ve been talking about this new GT3 Corvette and said, ‘Hey it would be fun if you could come over and do some driving.’
“One thing led to another over the last two years and it was like, ‘Let’s have Boris and I do it’ and, ‘Hey, it would be cool to put some Whelen decals on it.’ It all came together.
“It’s then just how we deal with the schedule.”
With Curran’s main focus this year again in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with Action Express Racing, an adjustment had to be made in their initial plans in Europe, which will now expand the car’s reach throughout multiple series.
“The original plan was to run that series but there’s five conflicts with IMSA,” Curran said. “Basically, what we’ve done now is we’re going to do six to eight races in up to four series.
“So instead of just focusing on GT Masters, we’ll bounce around. We’ll do a couple in GT Masters, a few British GT [rounds], a few [VLN] races.
“We’re going to get exposure for Callaway, we’re going to have some Whelen decals on it so we’ll get some exposure for Whelen in Europe, and just try to gain exposure for the new Callaway GT3 Corvette.”
Curran has yet to get behind the wheel of the new-generation GT3 contender, although he is expected to begin pre-season testing within the next month.
It will mark the 40-year-old’s European racing debut, a prospect Curran has been savoring.
“I’m excited about doing stuff outside of the U.S., for a change and to be back together with Boris,” he said. “It’s super exciting and it’s a bunch of tracks I haven’t raced at.
“Hockenheim, Nurburgring, all those places… I don’t know the tracks well enough, so I’m just excited to go over there and run them all! Nurburgring, for example, is always one of those bucket list tracks. I guess I’m probably most excited about.”
Those hoping to see the car race in North America, particularly with the arrival of FIA GT3-spec machinery into the WeatherTech Championship this year, however, will be disappointed, as the Callaway Corvette is only licensed to be run in Europe.
“The agreement [with GM] is to just run the car in Europe,” Curran said. “It is GT3 homologated through GM but the agreement is to just keep the car over there.
“We’d all love to see it in the U.S., but the plan is for Callaway to build three to four cars that they’ll run this year. There will be at least two full-time in GT Masters. Our car will float around.”
Curran will be seeking success this year in two different types of Corvettes, as he and co-driver Dane Cameron are back for their second season together in the Whelen-sponsored Action Express Corvette DP, following two overall wins and a third place finish in the Prototype championship last year.
“The main focus for me is really for Dane and I to go after the [IMSA] championship in the Whelen Corvette,” he said. “We got so strong in the second half of last year, if we can be that strong from the beginning to the end, I think we’ll be in good shape.”
The No. 31 Corvette DP finished sixth in last month’s season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona, with hopes of victory dashed by a driveshaft failure overnight.