The Honda/Acura NSX GT3 could be represented in the remainder of the Intercontinental GT Challenge season, with multiple teams working on entries for the Total 24 Hours of Spa and California 8 Hours, according to Honda Performance Development’s Lee Niffenegger.
The GT3 contender, which made its IGTC debut in October’s inaugural race at Laguna Seca with RealTime Racing, so far has two confirmed entries for the Suzuka 10 Hours, with European and U.S.-based customers evaluating programs for Rounds 2 and 4 of the globe-trotting championship.
While not an officially registered manufacturer for the championship, Niffenegger, the NSX GT3 Project Leader, said they are hopeful of an increased presence this year.
“There’s definitely interest in the remaining rounds of Intercontinental GT,” he told Sportscar365. “We’d like to join. There’s some things in the works for Spa, we’re trying to sort that out. We’re working with a customer.
“I think with Suzuka [confirmed], we’d like to do all the rest of the rounds. There’s also interest among the [IMSA] teams to do it as well.”
CJ Wilson Racing, which debuted its Acura in last weekend’s Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, has expressed interest in the Oct. 26-28 event at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, while Niffenegger indicated that Honda’s yet-to-be-announced team for ADAC GT Masters could lodge an entry for the Spa event in July.
Should that entry materialize, it would also mark the car’s Blancpain GT Series debut.
HPD Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Steve Eriksen has given SRO Motorsports Group’s IGTC platform high marks.
“For Honda that’s very interesting,” Eriksen told Sportscar365. “Because it’s a global program, we coordinate with global [Honda] on what they would want. Luckily we don’t have to make that decision right now.
“But I think it’s a nice concept and a neat way to unite different regions.”
In addition to the already announced entries from Carguy Racing and Modulo Drago Corse, Sportscar365 understands that a factory-backed NSX GT3 could also be on the grid in Suzuka.
It would be part of the previously announced joint commitment from Super GT500 manufacturers Toyota, Nissan and Honda for the Aug. 24-26 race, which takes the place of the traditional Suzuka 1000km.
HPD Targeting PWC Customers
Despite not having a full-time presence in the series this year, Niffenegger said they’re still hopeful of seeing the Acura NSX GT3 back on the grid in Pirelli World Challenge.
Longtime Acura outfit RealTime Racing has shifted its focus to a two-car Honda Civic Type-R TCR entry this year, following the conclusion of its single-year factory supported NSX GT3 campaign.
Team owner Peter Cunningham, however, has not ruled out a customer program in the future.
“We’d certainly like to have one but we also can’t fund it [entirely],” Niffenegger said. “If we had someone that would want some support, we’d be open to it. But we’re not in a position to give away cars. We just can’t.
“That’s one of the issues that’s been created globally, especially in Blancpain GT, and the reason why we have a team in ADAC [GT Masters]. The Blancpain GT teams have a lot of factory support.”