Porsche 962C #23 – Spark

1989 Porsche 962C 
Pilots: D. Morin, D. Caradec, A. Sturm
Team: Team Guy Chotard
Race: 14th GC (11th in C2 class) at Le Mans in 1993
Spark - S2084 (resin)

Published 08/06/18

Between 1984 and 1991, Porsche produced a total of 91 962s chassis. Of these, 16 were works cars and 75 went to privateers. In 1986, for Group C racing, these cars received a twin-turbo setup. With that, the car became known as the 962C model. Introduced by FIA in 1985, Group C came to substitute both Groups 5 and 6. The class was active for a few championships until 1992. In 1983 Group C Junior was introduced, specifically targeted towards privateers, renamed as Group C2 in 1984.  By 1989 Group C was very popular, but FIA thought it could do more. The idea was to transform the class into a formula series, with a whole new set of rules. However, the new rules restricted the performance of cars built to the original rules. With that, the many privateer teams were penalized. So interest in the class started to dwindle.

962C #23
By 1989 the car was a bit long in the tooth but still competitive.

In an attempt to encourage privateers to fill the grid at Le Mans, ACO allowed (with some restrictions) C2 privateers to race. Team Chotard was one of these privateers. For the 24 Heures du Mans of 1993 they used a regular 962C, powered by a  2994 cm³ Porsche turbo-charged flat-6 with DOHC and 24 valves.

962C #23
Stunning, car and model.

Car #23 (chassis #001GS) rolled out of Porsche’s facility at Weissach in 1989, and Gebhardt Racing bought it brand new. In 1992 Gebhardt sold it to Chotard Racing, that raced it at La Sarthe in 1992 and 1993. Its last race was at Le Mans in 1993 as 962C #23, where it sported the distinctive “Red Baron” twin-tier wing on the back. The higher plane worked as a standard wing – running in the cleaner air at the maximum legal height it could be run flatter for the same level of downforce but less drag. The bottom plane worked as an under wing extractor, enhancing the downforce. Joest Racing developed this setup for the 12 Hours of Sebring, but interestingly their car at La Sarthe in 1993 used the regular Porsche factory tail (car #17 had to abandon after 282 laps).

962C #23
Look at the wings and wing struts – details like that makes Spark boss.

I have to admit that what caught my attention in this 962C #23 was exactly that double-decker wing. The history behind the car isn’t particularly special, but that wing is different enough for me. Like the front of my #89 – I like these different details. In model terms there isn’t much to say, since it’s your average Spark (= great detail level). A very nice model but I think it’s only of interest to the Le Mans nuts.

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