Final December, the Car Membership de l’Ouest and the FIA introduced that tyre heaters can be scrapped from each the WEC and European Le Mans Collection this 12 months in a transfer “designed to scale back the groups’ environmental affect”.
As such, the respective qualifying classes for each the prototypes – together with Hypercar and LMP2 – and GTE automobiles can be prolonged to fifteen minutes to permit drivers extra time to heat their tyres up.
Glickenhaus, whose eponymous outfit has a single automotive entered for the complete WEC season in 2023, mentioned he believes this additional monitor time, plus the elevated threat of crashing on chilly tyres, may properly wipe out any advantages derived from scrapping tyre heaters.
“I feel it’s necessary to understand how a lot vitality not having tyre heaters will save versus rising the qualifying time from 10 minutes to fifteen minutes,” mentioned Glickenhaus in an internet press name organised by the WEC.
“We now must drive round to heat up the tyres – how a lot additional air pollution will these 5 minutes trigger?
“We’re an incredible believer in the necessity to change into extra inexperienced; we’re creating a hydrogen gasoline cell pickup monitor with a fast, straightforward refuelling answer, and hope to be the primary firm to ever run a zero-emission off-road endurance race, the Baja 1000. We perceive it’s necessary.
“However I do suppose that we are able to’t simply take [untested] options and simply say, ‘we’re being extra inexperienced by not utilizing tyre heaters’.
“I feel now we have to check the maths. If it [having cold tyres] causes one crash, how a lot vitality does that price, to rebuild the automotive? And the 5 minutes of getting all of the Hypercars working, how a lot vitality will that use?
“It’s necessary we’re sincere and truthful about how we may help the surroundings and never give you political options that look good however actually is probably not so good for the surroundings.”
#708 Glickenhaus Racing Glickenhaus 007 LMH of Olivier Pla, Romain Dumas, Pipo Derani
Photograph by: JEP / Motorsport Images
Toyota staff director Rob Leupen shared Glickenhaus’s scepticism as as to whether the measure was actually a lift environmentally, however mentioned he welcomed the transfer from a aggressive standpoint.
“You may crash the automotive on chilly tyres; you are able to do it with heated tyres too,” he mentioned. “I feel it’s [about] the administration of the staff and the way they deal with it. We additionally like very a lot setting the problem to our drivers and engineers to deal with these conditions.
“In the long run, if it brings the inexperienced issue that a lot, I doubt it. I feel Jim is true. However on the opposite aspect I feel we must always use the alternatives which have been given there to work with the circumstances.
“For me it’s tremendous to experiment on this manner. In the long term it ought to have a profit to all of us, and particularly in direction of the surroundings.”
Porsche, together with Cadillac, already has expertise of racing its new LMDh automobiles with out tyre heaters in final month’s Daytona 24 Hours.
Jonathan Diuguid, the staff principal at Porsche Penske Motorsport, mentioned he was inspired by the efforts made by Hypercar tyre provider Michelin – which additionally gives rubber for the IMSA SportsCar Championship – to make the tyre hotter ban workable.
“We labored fairly carefully with Michelin by way of the event course of and ran exams with and with out tyre heaters, and took that knowledge to know the strategy,” mentioned Diuguid.
“Any change in racing can be a chance for differentiation and elevated competitors. However I feel with Michelin, they’re invested in making it work too, so I feel there can be an open dialogue on that as we undergo the method.
“I view it as a impartial change and stay up for the racing a part of that.”