Mike Thackwell and the Kouros Racing team run by Peter Sauber's Switzerland-based operation debuted the Mercedes-powered C9 at the fourth round of the World Sportscar Championship at Silverstone. It was an impressive first outing: though unable to last the 1000km race distance, the C9 sat on the first row of the grid. All eyes were on the small team that was putting pressure on the mighty Porsche and Jaguar factory teams!
Paired with co-drivers the likes of Henri Pescarolo, Johnny Dumfries, Manuel Reuter, and Jean-Louis Schlesser, the New Zealander and his Kouros C9 only challenge five WSC events, but the qualifying record was astounding: amongst the fastest three qualifiers except at Le Mans. Mind you, the Kouros C9 did set the fastest race lap at Le Mans that year! All the tremendous efforts finally resulted in a pole at the 1000km at Spa-Francorchamps on September 13, 1987 and a week later the team earned victory in the German Supercup!