DK Engineering's latest project with Pursuit Racing is the stunning G-Force Racing Courage C65 Judd, which we’ve had the pleasure of completing restoring over the last 18-months.
April 18, 2023
DK Engineering is a long-time supporter of 90s and 2000s GT and prototype (LMP) cars, having run the Dallara LMP900, Ferrari 550 Maranello, Ferrari 575 GTC, Porsche 997 RSR as well as currently stocking a Ferrari 430 GTC, 458 GTE, and the Pursuit-recommissioned Epsilon Euskadi LMP1. Their latest project with Pursuit is the stunning G-Force Racing Courage C65 Judd, which we’ve had the pleasure of completing restoring over the last 18-months.
The Courage C65 was a slight Evolution of the C60 to meet 2004 LMP2 Regulations and they were built to work with a number of engines, including a Judd or Mechachrome V8 or the AER 4-cylinder turbo. DK’s car (Chassis 08) was initially equipped with Mechachrome V8 for an assault on the Le Mans Endurance Series (including the Le Mans 24 Hours) in white and Orange “Moet Hennessey” colours. Then the following year the car was taken on by G-Force Racing and fitted with a Judd V8 for another attack on the Le Mans 24 Hours. Since then, the car had been used in the USA briefly before retirement and had not been seen for well over a decade.
DK bought Chassis 08 in the Autumn of 2021 and immediately entrusted the car to Pursuit Racing. We were entrusted with a nut and bolt total restoration to the meticulous “DK” standards. So often these “modern” race cars are simply 'recommissioned', but in this instance the brief was to head to the track in 2023 with a car with zero hours on every component. The decision was to restore the car to its later Le Mans spec with is distinctive black and orange G-Force livery and with a screaming Judd V8. The Courage C65 was taken back to a tub and given a complete overhaul, fitting new wiring looms and MOTEC to future-proof the car. Along the way we had to reverse-engineer several parts that were missing when the car arrived at Pursuit as well. The restoration was completed just in time for a runway shakedown at Turweston and a brief test at Donington before its debut at Mugello 2023.
At Mugello, the freshly restored Courage was driven by James Littlejohn and DK’s Harvey Stanley (who as a newcomer to the aero characteristics, serves as an indicator of how well an amateur driver could take to the car). In Qualifying, Littlejohn put the car on the front row of the grid, splitting the more powerful LMP1 cars and Harvey’s time would have still held pole position amongst the LMP2 class - impressive for a car fresh from restoration and with limited testing. In Race 1, despite the lengthy pit stop penalty for having an elite driver in the car, the Courage finished Third Overall and 1st in Class, and in the second race the car scored another dominant LMP2 win by over 40 seconds and another podium, (just 1.4 seconds behind the LMP1 car in 2nd) – in both races the car was just 0.5 seconds from setting the fastest lap, but beaten by the rapid Christian Glasel in his MG LMP1 car. Interestingly whilst James Littlejohn demonstrated the car’s devastating outright pace, by the end of race 2, Harvey Stanley was within 1.2 seconds of Littlejohn - crucially demonstrating the car’s potential for the gentleman historic racer in this up-and-coming Endurance Racing Legends series from Peter Auto.
It’s been amazing to see the Courage C65 come back to life during the course of the restoration process, and it’s fantastic to see it’s early success in the season so far. Thanks to DK Engineering and all our fantastic suppliers for helping us make this recommission a success.