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Pirelli Paddock Pass: Shawn Meagher

This week’s Pirelli Paddock Pass with Camaro GT4.R Program Manager Shawn Meagher…

Photo: Richard Prince/GM

Shawn Meagher oversees Chevrolet’s Camaro GT4.R programs, and this week in the Pirelli Paddock Pass he gives us an inside look at the operation and what makes Pirelli World Challenge an ideal place to showcase the car.

What has the reception to the Camaro GT4.R been globally?

“Wherever Chevrolet goes racing, we’re there to win, and teams know that we will deliver a car that is capable of winning races.

“There was certainly a lot of excitement, especially for the fans that are so loyal to the Camaro, as the word got around that we would be producing the Camaro GT4.R.

“And for us to accomplish this goal, we knew it was important for us to deliver a car that was not only quick and driver friendly, but also robust, and easy to run for a team.

“So we took things step by step in the first year at a production level that we knew we felt we could properly support to our standards and then ramp up production as we were able.

“Admittedly our timeline for announcing additional production runs last year potentially made things a bit difficult for them to make the decision to campaign a car in 2018.

“But with continued excitement for the car, and with cars continuing to be produced and available for purchase, we’re looking forward to seeing more and more Camaros on the grid.”

What made the GT4 platform attractive to Chevrolet?

“Racing the Camaro in a GT class has been something that we at Chevrolet consider very important to the identity of the car, and the GT4 platform was a natural fit as we looked to the future.

“The common global homologation has opened a whole host of opportunities for customers to race the car and reach new fans worldwide.

“In North America in particular, having the ability for our customers to campaign the car in [multiple series] under a common homologation is something that really made it attractive given the importance that Chevrolet sees in each of these series and our desire to continue the competition and successes we have enjoyed with the Camaro throughout the years.”

How much of the GT4 Camaro comes straight from the production line?

“The great thing about the GT4 class is that it allows us to make such a strong connection with the road car.

“With the focus that goes into producing such a track capable machine for production, we have the ability to use the production underpinnings of this car like the suspension linkages, cradles, engine, body, and more and put together a package that is a new evolution of the car.

“And this is important to us because it allows us to take those steps in the development of the car, and take the lessons that we learn back to production to make our future products better.”

What is the significance of the addition of Robinson Racing to the Chevrolet Camaro family in Pirelli World Challenge alongside Blackdog Speed Shop?

“It’s significant in multiple regards. It means a lot to us having multiple teams now running the Camaro GT4.R in Pirelli World Challenge, and it’s especially great to see Robinson Racing make the choice to run Chevrolets given their long racing history with the brand.

“With this growth to the Camaro GT4.R program we hope that it will encourage more teams to put Chevrolet at the top of their list, whether they’re looking to make a change from another manufacturer or looking to move into the GT4 class for the first time.”

What makes Pirelli World Challenge a logical venue for showcasing the Camaro GT4.R?

“In simplest terms: the fans and the racing. It’s a series that has been such an important part of the Camaro’s identity as an outstanding GT race car, and we see that in the loyalty and excitement we see from the fans at every race; both for the series as a whole and the Camaro.

“We knew that it’s a place where we could show that this is a championship winning car.

“In the hands of Blackdog Speed Shop, we did just that, sweeping Team, Driver, and Manufacturer Championships in the first year of the cars competition in 2017.”

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