1986 Sauber SHS C6 #95
Pilots: D. Lacoud, R. Bassaler, Y. Tapy
Team: Roger Bassaler
Race: DNC (C2 class) at Le Mans in 1986
Spark - S4081 (resin)
Built by Swiss manufacturer Sauber and the Seger & Hoffman engineering firm (that’s why “SHS”), the development of the SHS C6 started in 1981. The car was ready for the 1982 season, but later that year Seger & Hoffman left the project, and Sauber took over. SHS produced two C6 chassis, solely intended for the World Endurance Championship and Deutsche Rennsport Meisterschaft series. With BASF sponsorship and a 4.0 Ford-Cosworth engine both cars raced at La Sarthe that year, but both were DNFers. Even so, with some half-good results in other races, Sauber still managed to finish tied for 5th in the 1982 WEC for Manufacturers. For the next season Sauber decided that the car needed further improvement. However, they started the development of the new C7 model instead, and both C6’s were retired.
In 1983, the FIA split the Group C category into two classes – Group C and Group C Junior (C2). FIA created the Junior class for less wealthy privateers, enticing more participation in Group C racing. And that’s when French racer Roland Bassaler comes in. Needing a cheap chassis, in 1985 Bassaler bought an old SHS C6 and installed a BMW M88 engine in it. The M88 was an inline-6 with 3453 cm³ and DOHC initially used in BMW’s 3.0 CSi. The engine was very reliable, and depending on tune could deliver over 300 hp. So in 1985 the old SHS C6 returned to La Sarthe, finishing in 23rd place.
In 1986 Bassaler was again in Le Mans. Though car #95 (chassis #82-C6-02) did finish the race, it finished 57 laps short and did not classify. Don’t ask me why, but I have a certain prejudice against cars that DNC. That being so, this is my first one. Though not successful at La Sarthe, the paint job is a winner in the Liveries From the 80’s contest. And beside that I like to see how Saubers evolved up to the mighty C9.