Huge rebuild of No. 1 Camaro GT4.R after Utah crash
LINCOLNSHIRE, Illinois – Racing hasn’t started at Watkins Glen quite yet, but already Blackdog Speed Shop can claim a victory. The team completed a massive rebuild of the No. 1 Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R following the most recent Pirelli World Challenge round at Utah Motorsports Campus.
To recap, Andy Pilgrim hit a spinning car with 15 minutes remaining in the second Utah GTS SprintX race. The impact at the left-front of the Camaro sent Pilgrim airborne and took he and Lawson Aschenbach out of the race. It also sent the Camaro back to the team’s home base in Illinois damaged and in pieces.
Faced with so much work and not much time to get Aschenbach’s championship-contending Camaro repaired for this weekend’s doubleheader at Watkins Glen, Blackdog Speed Shop enlisted the help of a neighbor: Greg Turley and Bull Valley Auto Body in McHenry, Illinois.
“I wasn’t sure we could fix it until the guys took the cradles out and the new ones went right in,” said Ray Sorenson, team manager. “Marc (Engberg, No. 1 Camaro chief mechanic) hustled the rig and car back from Utah to give us a head start. He and Shawn (Warnke, No. 11 Camaro chief mechanic) started going through all the suspension and driveline while we waited for the quarter panels to arrive.
“From there I knew it would be up to the guys at Bull Valley if they could get it all together,” Sorenson added. “The guys worked 11 days straight on it with a couple nights past 1 a.m. I can’t say enough about everyone’s effort.”
The catalogue of repairs and replacements is mind-blowing, according to Sorenson.
“We had to replace the transmission, differential, driveshaft, steering rack, all four shocks,
and every suspension part from front to rear including both front and rear cradles, and all the hardware,” he said. “We pulled back the chassis and cut off both rear quarter panels and replaced them. We also pulled down the right-front shock tower back into place and replaced both front fenders and the left side door as well.
“My thanks to Greg and his crew at Bull Valley, who put forth an amazing overtime effort to get us back on track for this weekend,” Sorenson added. “Greg has always bailed us out of these situations and this one took an enormous amount of effort to complete in time.”
The Pirelli World Challenge GTS class will compete at Watkins Glen International from Friday-Sunday. Qualifying is set for 10:50 a.m. ET on Saturday with Race 1 at 4:10 p.m. ET later in the day. Race 2 is scheduled for 11:05 a.m. ET on Sunday. Live race coverage will be available at World-Challenge.com as well as SiriusXM Channel 383.
About Blackdog Speed Shop
Blackdog Speed Shop Blackdog Speed Shop is a high-performance, custom car builder in the northern suburbs of Chicago specializing in ground-up car builds, high-performance upgrades for engines, transmissions, suspension and exhaust including computer and dyno tuning. Whether you have a modern muscle car, vintage muscle, 1930s hot rod or a foreign exotic, you will enjoy the Blackdog experience.
Ever dreamed of piloting a real World Challenge race car? Blackdog offers rental and “arrive and drive” racing in addition to purpose-built cars. Call Blackdog today at (855) 4-BLACKDOG to schedule an appointment or discuss the best way to put you in the driver’s seat!
About Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R
Built to global GT4 regulations, the Chevrolet Camaro GT4.R is based on the road-going Chevrolet Camaro ZL1. It features a 6.2-liter, Chevrolet small block V8 that was developed and validated by Chevrolet Racing. Power is delivered to a six-speed Xtrac sequential transmission with paddle-shifting and adjustable traction control. Additional mechanical features include an Xtrac racing limited-slip differential, a two-way adjustable Ohlins Racing dampers and adjustable ABS along with Brembo brakes.
Blackdog Speed Shop at a Glance
• Pirelli World Challenge GTS Driver Championships – 2013, 2014, 2015, 2017
• Pirelli World Challenge GTS Team Championships – 2013, 2017
• Pirelli World Challenge GTS Manufacturer Championships – 2013, 2017
• Pirelli World Challenge GTS Victories: 25 – Most in class history
Chevrolet in Pirelli World Challenge
• Chevrolet Camaro second all-time in PWC victories by model (53).
• Chevrolet first all-time in PWC victories by brand (127)
• General Motors first all-time in PWC victories by manufacturer (190)
• Chevrolet five Manufacturer Championships (1990-91, 1994, 2013, 2017)