The Scandinavian GT and prototype scene is going through turbulent
times – writes Johannes Gauglica. At the end of last
year, it looked as if the Swedish-Norwegian joint venture called
the Nordic SuperCar Challenge would easily fill the void created
by the demise of the Swedish GT Championship. Now things are not
so clear. An initiative by the SuperCar organisers to forge an alliance
with the Swedish Touring Car Championship (STCC), for its Swedish
rounds, was met with a lukewarm response by the STCC and the Swedish
motorsport authority (SBF), which would not sanction the new series'
regulations. Scandinavia's most popular motor racing series, instead
of taking a chance with a startup venture, and grids of unknown
quantity and quality, decided to play it safe and accept the Scandinavian
Porsche Cup as a support category. This is also a new series, but
a product that has already proven its worth in other markets. From
the initial announcement last year, it seemingly has not gained
as much momentum as the factory would have hoped, but will go ahead
the SuperCars have now regrouped around the Norwegian part of their
schedule, which had never been in doubt, with the Norwegian motorsport
federation backing the series all the way and granting it Championship
status. Norway's silhouette "Thundercar" contingent (photo),
along with those Swedish GT competitors who don't feel like switching
to a Cup Porsche, should guarantee a healthy field of entrants.
Ironically, the SuperCars will, in their role as a Norwegian series,
share a weekend with the STCC at the Norwegian Moi Rana circuit.
There, the Swedish Touringcar officials will have an opportunity
to have a closer look at the new series, and see if it should be
given a chance in 2005.
The mighty STCC has
retained an option of inviting the SuperCars along to selected rounds
next year; so the SuperCars now have to prove their worth. According
to series organiser Haavard Lien, their goal is to "show the
STCC they have made a mistake" turning them down this year.
In the long run, the Nordic SuperCars intend to "become the
series which, along with STCC, creates the most entertainment value
and attracts the most interest from motor racing fans and the media".
recent years, the STCC package has also included the open sports
prototypes of the Sportscar Challenge. For 2004, the sportscar format
was changed to a one make formula exclusively for the motorcycle-engined
Radical barchettas. As a response to this, the Swedish Racing Sportscar
Club has announced the formation of its own tour, ambitiously named
"RS Le Mans". Under the tag line "Sweden's fastest
racing", it incorporates the Sportscar Challenge, with reigning
Champion Petter Johansson (photo), and the historic championships
organised by the Swedish SHK historic racing club. As a bonus, this
package will also race at Anderstorp, one of Scandinavia's most
renowned and popular tracks, and for political reasons currently
"off limits" to the STCC and its support series. Also,
the series may venture as far south as Germany for one of its "away
games", and an encounter with the Sports Car Challenge at the