Honda Returns to 25 Hours of Thunderhill
Honda Performance Development, in partnership with the Ohio-based Honda of America Racing Team (HART), will field a 2012 Honda Civic Si at this year’s 25 Hours of Thunderhill.
Developed for competition in the Grand-Am’s Continental Tire Challenge Series, SCCA World Challenge and similar categories, the HART/HPD Civic will be part of an expected 86-car field in the season-ending endurance race sanctioned by the National Auto Sport Association (NASA). The 25 Hours of Thunderhill will be contested December 3-4 on the three-mile Thunderhill Raceway road course, north of Sacramento, California.
Members of HART, the Ohio-based race team comprised of Honda associates, will join with HPD to prepare and run the Civic Si, which was built up from a body-in-white as displayed by HPD at the recent Specialty Equipment Manufacturers Association (SEMA) show in Las Vegas.
The Civic has been constructed to NASA’s EO-class specifications, utilizing a spec K-24 engine as approved by Grand-Am and the SCCA, competition roll cage and safety equipment, and HPD-designed motorsports performance parts. The car will run on BFGoodrich R1 tires.
At the 2010 Thunderhill event, HPD fielded a pair of Honda CR-Zs – the first production-based, gasoline-electric hybrids to race in North America – and a B-Spec Honda Fit, which also was making its competition debut. One of the CR-Zs finished second in the E3 class and eighth overall in the 72-car field, ahead of many entries from faster categories.
In addition to the HART/HPD Civic effort, Team Honda Research-West (THR-W) – primarily made up of California-based Honda R&D associates who compete regularly in NASA events – will again campaign its Acura RSX as a club entry at the 25 Hours.
Honda Performance Development (HPD) is the Honda racing company within North America. Founded in 1993 and located in Santa Clarita, Calif., HPD is the technical operations center for high-performance Honda racing cars and engines. HPD served as single engine supplier to the IZOD IndyCar Series from 2006-2011 and spearheaded championship-winning efforts in the 2009-2010 American Le Mans Series, 2010 Le Mans Series and the 2010 24 Hours of Le Mans.
HPD offers a line of race engines for track applications from prototype sports cars to karting; for professional, amateur and entry-level efforts.