The corks likely stayed firmly wired into the champagne bottles in the Corvette pits after the 24 Hours of Le Mans race this year, iced down to toast an anticipated win that would also have highlighted the all-American sports car's 50th year of competition at the legendary French race.
And if a few did get popped, any of the traditional celebratory stuff that was quaffed - to dilute the team's disappointment after both its cars retired from the 24 hour high speed marathon - must have tasted pretty flat.
After six GTS/GT1 wins since 2001, Corvette entered cars in the highly competitive GT2 category in this year's race on the Sarthe circuit in late June with hopes high. And after qualifying 1-2, dominated the early going.
But it was all over for the #63 car shortly after seven o'clock Sunday morning when the engine failed, and the #64 car lasted less than three hours longer, also going out with an engine problem. This one likely linked to an earlier high speed crash into the trackside barriers after being punted off by a Peugeot.
What happened to the Corvette guys this year isn't untypical of this incredible tough twice round the clock race, and nothing they hadn't experienced before. It's what makes a win there such a triumph.
And why the wry expression "that's racing" was coined to put into context what would seem like a devastating blow to the team and the boardroom boys who back it. But they'll likely bounce back again, as they've been doing for half a century now, to try again.
The Corvette was launched in 1953, into an era when corporate-backed racing in the U.S. was in a self-inflicted hiatus. Pressure was building in Chevrolet's engineering department back rooms, however, as it was elsewhere in the industry. Corvette was among those that led the charge back onto the tracks propelled by the enthusiasm of legendary engineer Zora Arkus-Duntov whose dream was to see his cars race at Le Mans.
The first company-backed race outing involved a trio of Corvettes hastily prepared for the 1956 Sebring 12-hour race in Florida. They experienced numerous problems, but one finished ninth overall and first in class against tough European opposition.
It was enough to encourage Corvette to develop endurance racers such as the SR-2s and SSs of the late 50s and for privateers to run Corvettes in all types of events. It wasn't until 1960 a Corvette ran at Le Mans though.
That year wealthy American sportsman Briggs Cunningham put together a team of three Corvettes, dressed in U.S. racing colours of white with blue stripes, to run in the French classic. They were driven by Cunningham and Bill Kimberly, Dick Thompson and Fred Windridge and John Fitch and Bob Grossman. Duntov, who had a class win to his credit at Le Mans in a Porsche, was listed as a reserve, but never got a chance to run. A fourth Corvette ran in race-fan-backed Team Camoradi colours driven by Lou Lilley and Fred Gamble.
It wasn't an auspicious start to what would become a half century of striving. The No. 1 car crashed, the No. 2 car buried itself in a sandpit and then blew up. The Fitch/Grossman car experienced overheating problems, but packing ice from the catering truck around the engine kept it going, to finish 8th overall and first in the large displacement GT class, at an average speed of 97.92 mph. The Camoradi car was running at the end, but not classified as an official finisher.
That eighth place would be the best recorded by a Corvette until the arrival of the C5-Rs in the late 1990s.
Corvette didn't return to Le Mans for a while, but their big Chevy V-8 engines did, in Jim Halls Chaparrals and various Iso Rivoltas, Iso Grifos and Lolas.
Corvette's next appearance was in 1966 when a red, white and blue Sting Ray coupe entered by a California dealer and driven by Dick Gulstrand and Bob Bondurant hit 171 mph on the Mulsanne straight before blowing up at the half race point.
Henry Greder and Bob Lutz (yes, the Bob Lutz who has recently been overseeing GM product development) put together two car team under the Scuderia Filipinetti banner in 1968, but both failed to finish. Greder was also involved in another unsuccessful effort the following year. Corvettes were fast, but just not reliable enough.
In 1972 it was the turn of a man who would become a Corvette icon. John Greenwood, teamed with comedian and racer Dick Smothers in a two-car effort. Their American flag painted racers didn't last that year, or when Greenwood and dealer Don Yenko returned the next.
Greenwood, who had been developing a series of Corvette racers known as the Batmobiles was back in 1976 with big-block power that helped them to qualify 9th, but a failed fuel cell ended their run.
Chevy was a presence again at Le Mans in 1981-82, not with a Corvette but a Camaro.
For its fourth generation Corvette was re-bodied and re-worked by 'Vette specialist Reeves Callaway in 1994. Refuelling on the course disqualified the car that year, but Callaway finished ninth the next year and second in class. The lessons learned with these production-based C4s provided the foundation for the C5-Rs that would finally be successful.
GM brass decided to get serious about a Corvette race program again in the late 1990s with the arrival of the fifth generation C5s, and with the aid of race car builders Pratt & Miller, put together a series of production-based racers campaigned in 1999 by Canada's Ron Fellows, Chris Kneifel and John Paul Jr., but without much success.
The following year the team showed improvement, including a third and fourth-place finish at Le Mans, and in 2001 finally broke through, finishing eighth overall and taking the Corvette's first class win at the fabled French circuit with Fellows, Scott Pruett and Johnny O'Connell driving.
More Le Mans wins followed in 2002, 2004 and in 2005 and 2006 with the new C6.R which is based on the sixth generation Corvette. And last year the team took the chequered flat at Le Mans once again.
It's tough to make a lasting impression at Le Mans. Only a few car makers have emerged from the experience as legends. And only two American car companies have ever managed to do so. Ford in the 60s with its dominant GT40s and now General Motors in the opening decade of the new millennium with its iconic Corvette.