The charismatic Swiss Sauber team, like many others, retains examples of each of its Formula One cars and all conquering Sports Prototypes, but faces the not uncommon problem that several of its cars, while outwardly complete, are unable to run.
The quandary which could affect many equipes, and have repercussions on historic motorsport and collectors of the world’s great racing cars stems from the start of the era in which complex electronics took over, from mechanical systems, the management of ignition and fuel injection functions on the engines.
“The electronic systems required both special software and a team of engineers to programme and run them,” says Sauber’s Gustav Busing. “But those who knew how to operate the systems are often not available and the software, without which the engines won’t start, has disappeared.”
Car manufacturer Peter Sauber, who started his career as a driver, would like to demonstrate his team’s 1989 Le Mans-winning Mercedes-Benz-powered C9, and his first F1 cars. Mercedes has a couple of Sauber prototypes in running order, but the C11 remained silent at Goodwood.