With two hours left of racing Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus has had to retire both vehicles (701 and 702) due to gearbox issues despite a strong start, particularly for car 702.
After a great first four hours yesterday, 702 started on the grid in second place and within seven minutes of the start driver Thomas Mutsch took pole.
Jeff Westphal then took over and again managed to maintain pace bringing 702 into the pits in first place before handing over driving duties to Andreas Simonsen. When Andreas came in the car required some work in the pits, which lost a little time so it re-joined the track in 15th position. After a few more laps with Thomas Mutsch behind the wheel an issue with the gearbox became apparent and the team decided to retire the car.
There were some mechanical issues with car 701 yesterday so it started today’s part of the race in 14th on the grid, the last place in its class, which was 52nd overall. This was because a penalty was applied as the engineers worked through the night to ensure it was ready to race today. After some great driving from Felipe Laser and Manuel Lauck they managed to get the car into 47th, but the same gearbox issue as 702 meant it was brought into the pits and also had to retire early.
This was the first official race of 2016 for Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus and the first time the team competed in the 24 Hour Series, and at the Mugello circuit. The team were very proud of the result despite having to retire early, as this was a completely new experience for them. The cars ran well for a good proportion of the race and were incredibly competitive, and this event gave the team a good opportunity to gel as a unit.
The mechanical issue with the cars is completely understood by the team, and they will now work hard to fix this gearbox issue and improve reliability for the next race which is part of the VLN Series from 01 – 02 April 2016 at the Nurburgring.
Jim Glickenhaus, Team Owner, said: “I’m very happy that our car ran so well and fast and was leading at the two thirds mark. This reminds me of when I used to race in the Can Am in the 60s and we would build engines with an extra 100 horsepower, which would make the cars much faster but unfortunately sometimes cause other mechanical issues. We have the will to keep racing and I really believe by the time we get to the 24 hours in Nurburgring we will have a fast and very strong car.”
The Scuderia Cameron Glickenhaus 2016 season culminates at the Nurburging 24 Hours in May. The team has high hopes for this race and will use the next couple of months, and the intermediary races, to bring the car to the level required to be a real contender for the Nurburgring.