General Motors chose the Pratt & Miller group of Michigan to build and develop the new racing cars, as well as to organize the racing team in preparation for a debut in 1999. Riley & Scott also assisted in the project, running a second team for a year. Since regulations in place at the time limited the team to using elements of production Corvettes, Pratt & Miller and GM used heavily modified road car mules to test out the engine and other equipment that the racing cars were to use.
Later, the actual race chassis were built, sharing only basic key structural elements with the road cars. A firewall was placed immediately behind the driver's seat in the cockpit, eliminating any rear visibility inside the car. A large diffuser and wing were added to the rear, while a splitter and vents on the hood were added to the front. The front headlights were also replaced with protruding permanent units in place of the pop-up headlights on the road car.
The C5-R initially used a 366 ci (6.0 liter) V8 engine based on the road car's LS1. This was replaced with a larger 427 ci (7.0 liter) engine several months later during the 1999 season, and became the standard engine for the C5-R for the rest of its career. Katech Engine Development constructed the C5-Rs engines, although they retained elements of the production LS1 units.
Eleven C5-R chassis were be built by Pratt & Miller between 1998 and 2004, with ten being used directly by Corvette Racing and one built purely for privateer use. A twelfth car C5-R frame was built, but served merely as a test mule for the C6.R.
Later modifications included some technology developed on the C6.R, including air conditioning systems for driver comfort and a rear view camera on the bumper and monitor in the cockpit to overcome the lack of a rear window.
In 2000, Pratt & Miller took over as the sole Corvette team, once again starting the season at Daytona. The Corvette of Fellows and Kneifel, now joined by Brit Justin Bell, greatly improved on their previous result by finishing in second place overall, a minute behind a factory Viper and easily outperforming various prototypes. However the team was not able to match the performance of the Vipers at Sebring, nor at their debut at Le Mans. The team rebounded though, as they earned their first class victories upon returning to the ALMS. The Corvette team managed to upset the Viper squad at Texas as well as the Petit Le Mans. Even though the C5-Rs ran only a partial season, the team earned third place in the GTS class championship.
2001 once again saw improvement at the opening of the season at Daytona. The C5-Rs outlasted the prototypes in the field and earned themselves the overall race victory. The race also saw the first drives by Dale Earnhardt and Earnhardt, Jr. in both the 24 Hours and the Corvette C5-R, with their car finishing fourth overall. Feeling that the C5-R was a capable winner anywhere, Pratt & Miller ran their first full season of the ALMS and earned six class victories, including their second at the Petit Le Mans. The C5-R also took its first victory at Le Mans, finishing eighth overall and 34 laps ahead of the closest competitor in their class.
Corvette Racing did not return to the 24 Hours of Daytona in 2002 due to rule changes in that event's championship, but they did continue their run in the American Le Mans Series. Corvette won nine out of the ten events, including their first class victory at the 12 Hours of Sebring. Their only loss came to the new Prodrive Ferrari team. Corvette also secured their second win at Le Mans as well.
2003 saw the first challenge to Corvette Racing's two years of dominance in their class. Prodrive chose to enter their Ferraris in the full ALMS season as well, and although they were not strong early in the season, they managed to win the last four events of the season, including Petit Le Mans. Corvette Racing was however able to secure their third championship by a mere four points over the Prodrive team. The Ferraris would strike another blow though as they managed to end Corvette Racing's Le Mans streak, an event in which Corvette Racing celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Corvette.
Prodrive did not return to the American Le Mans Series for 2004, allowing Corvette to sweep the entire season and earn their fourth straight championship. Although Prodrive did compete at Le Mans, Corvette Racing was able to avenge their loss and add their third class victory at the event. This season was the final one for the C5-R under the Corvette Racing banner. The development of the C6 generation Corvette for 2005 lead to an all-new race car, termed the Corvette C6.R, which the factory team used at the beginning of the 2005 season.
In total, Corvette Racing's C5-Rs would earn 31 class victories in the American Le Mans Series, three class wins at Le Mans, and one overall victory at Daytona.
2004 saw a similar result, with a best finish of second once again at a Spa round, as well as a couple of thirds. 2005 however would see the car take control of the Belcar series, as SRT won the opening round at Zolder. SRT went on to win four more events that season, including the 24 Hours of Zolder, and won the overall BelCar championship. An eighth place was also earned at the Spa 24 Hours.
At the end of 2005, SRT bought a former factory C5-R to compliment their existing car. Both entered in the French FFSA GT Championship the next season. SRT managed a season best of second at Nogaro. 2007 saw only one C5-R entered in FFSA GT, earning five third place finishes. The team's second C5-R would run in the FIA GT Championship's Citation Cup for amateur drivers, winning three races for that category, as well as finishing tenth overall at the Spa 24 Hours.
For 2006, the team chose to move to the Belcar series while their brand new C6.R concentrated on FIA GT. The team won on their debut to the series. In 2007, the Dutch Carsport Holland half of the team separated, leaving PK-Carsport to continue on their own with the C5-R, choosing to return to FIA GT. The team had one of their best finish of the season at the Spa 24 Hours, once again finishing in third place but only three laps behind the winners.
PSI remained in FFSA GT for 2007, once again earning a race victory, this time at Nogaro. The C5-R was also entered in a few rounds of the FIA GT Championship as part of the Citation Cup.
2007 brought a new C6.R to the team, and both cars were campaigned in the Le Mans Series, but added the FFSA GT Championship to their season. Three second place finishes were earned in FFSA GT, while the Le Mans Series entries earned only two third place finishes. The car was also entered at Le Mans once again, but finished a distant 24th.