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Nürburgring Endurance

Glickenhaus Optimistic Ahead of New Car’s N24 Debut

SCG confident of new GT car’s ability ahead of its maiden Nürburgring 24 attempt…

Photo: Gruppe C Photography

Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus is prepared for its first Nürburgring 24 with the new SCG 004C race car which is “all ready to go” according to company founder Jim Glickenhaus.

The U.S automaker is entering with a new car after five consecutive years campaigning the SCG 003C which regularly found itself keeping pace with the main GT3 cars.

Its latest product, which like the 003C has been developed by Italian firm Podium Advanced Technologies, made its race debut in the six-hour NLS race last month.

There the SCG in-house team worked through some early issues, most notably a damaging fire in practice that was caused by what Glickenhaus described as a “homebrew” muffler fitted to bring the car’s noise level below the 130-decibel maximum.

“The six-hour race was the first one we ever did with the 004C, so it was really a test,” Glickenhaus told Sportscar365.

“We went out under three different BoPs during the race and came in to change it, because the Nürburgring was trying to get a feeling for where the car is.

“We hadn’t raced in any of the NLS races before, so they really needed to get a baseline. That required two trips to the dyno. We did one then and we did one Wednesday morning.

“The fire [at the last NLS race] was completely stupid. The hot gasses melted an oil line. It had nothing to do with the design.

“We’ve designed new mufflers and the car is nice and quiet, so it’s all ready to go.”

Glickenhaus indicated that the 004C is full of lessons learned from SCG’s 003C racer, which claimed a shock overall pole for the Nürburgring 24 in 2017.

The new machine has already banked a 30-hour endurance test at Aragon as part of its N24 preparations, although its race experience has been limited to that single NLS outing.

“Everything we learned from the 003 has gone into the 004,” he said.

“For example, in the 003 when we had an accident on the front-end and broke a headlight that had to be changed, which took us 16 minutes. But with re-engineering, you can remove the entire nose of the 004, replace it and plug it in 16 seconds.

“You can take the entire engine and gearbox out of the car without removing body panels, change the clutch and put it back in an hour and a half. It’s a very easy car to run.”

Glickenhaus suggested that the Balance of Performance will determine where the 6.2-liter V8-powered 004C runs pace-wise in its maiden 24-hour race, and whether it can fight the GT3-class SP9 cars.

The 004C has been confirmed at a minimum weight of 1310 kg, making it the equal third-heaviest car when compared with the SP9 field.

It’s the same minimum weight as the 2020 version of the Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo, while the Mercedes-AMG GT3 Evo and BMW M6 GT3 are 45 kg and 35 kg heavier respectively.

“We’re one car racing 30 cars from top manufacturers so it’s extremely difficult for us to compete against the sheer number of other teams,” said Glickenhaus.

“Having said that, if there was no BoP, we would walk away from any of these GT3 cars. We’re much faster. We have better aero and more potential horsepower.

“The BoP is a tremendous part of what’s going to happen [in the race]. There’s tremendous pressure from the major manufacturers not to have us win the Nürburgring. Could we win it? Absolutely. And if we get a fair BoP we’re going to put on a hell of a show.

“We could finish in the top ten, no question about it. If we don’t get a fair BoP, we won’t. But I think the car is going to run for 24 hours.

“We’re one car, so if we get crashed out that’ll be it. But eventually, we’ll have more than one car here and we’ll do well. It’s a serious effort.”

Westbrook Joins Driver Lineup

Former Ford Chip Ganassi Racing factory ace Richard Westbrook has joined SCG’s driver lineup for its first Nürburgring 24 with the new car.

The Brit, who arrives at the Nordschleife straight from scoring a GTE-Pro class podium at the 24 Hours of Le Mans with Aston Martin Racing, will share driving duties with Glickenhaus regulars Thomas Mutsch, Franck Mailleux and Felipe Fernandez Laser.

Westbrook turned his first laps on board the 004C during Thursday’s first qualifying practice session, setting the car’s best time of 8:42.364 on his second and final attempt.

He was originally set to drive a Phoenix Racing Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo, but the team had to remove an entry and shuffle its lineup after Vincent Kolb, who brought most of the budget to the car that Westbrook was listed in, withdrew due to injury. 

Daniel Lloyd is a UK-based reporter for Sportscar365, covering the FIA World Endurance Championship, Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, among other series.

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