Henric Skoog will be joining DTM race winner, Joel Eriksson, and BMW Junior Erik Johansson. Skoog is moving up to the Super Sports Car League from the Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland. All three of them will be making their series debut.
It was Skoog's father, who first introduced him to racing; Skoog Senior is also a keen racing driver. "However, I competed in motocross initially but was then given a kart which I just drove for fun," said young Skoog. He got his competition licence at the age of 15 and began his motor racing career in the Swedish Junior Cup, a series for beginners, with an old Renault Clio. He won the title in his second season and then switched to the ‘actual’ Clio Cup. He promptly became one of the top drivers and won the championship in 2015 after twice finishing runner-up. His role model back then was DTM star and rally-cross world champion, Mattias Ekström, who also focused on touring and sports car races to begin with and was never much interested in formula racing. Skoog: "I think that Ekström has achieved a great deal in his career. I am also a big fan of four-time Swedish touring car champion, Richard Göransson, with whom I've completed several training courses for racing drivers in the past."
Skoog then moved to the Porsche Carrera Cup, first in Sweden and then in Germany in 2017. His best showing to date was in the second race at the Norisring in 2019. He led for two thirds of the race from pole position only to be taken out by his team mates. Skoog: "The field is very close in the Carrera Cup. There's no room for error, otherwise your chances of securing top-class results will be zero. From that point of view, the Cup has been excellent preparation for the ADAC GT Masters, because it is just as hard-fought. It’s amazing, at times, to see how many cars are covered by a mere second."
During his first season in the GT race series, 24-year-old Skoog will share a BMW M6 GT3 with works driver Nick Yelloly in most races but will be partnered by BMW Junior, Erik Johansson, at the Sachsenring. "I was in the shoot-out for BMW's Junior team and have felt a connection with the BMW family ever since," said Skoog. "I am therefore very pleased to now be driving the Schubert M6." He got his first chance to test the 500-bhp muscle car in Portimao at the beginning of February. "It was most enjoyable," said Skoog. "The BMW is very different to the Cup Porsche. They are similar as regards performance, but the BMW has much greater downforce. It took me a few laps to get used to the higher level of grip in the fast turns. But even through the tight corners, the BMW drives very differently to the Porsche because of its front-engine, and getting used to that will be the key to a good season."
Skoog is unable to accurately assess his current level of performance in the GT3 car, as the Corona crisis put a stop to a continuation of the test programme originally planned: "It's not easy for me to set any goals," he told us. "I definitely intend to learn a lot this season both in terms of car and championship. We will certainly do our utmost to achieve top-class results."
Skoog is very pleased that three Swedes will be driving for Schubert as he told us: "It's going to be great, and the atmosphere in the team should be good. We come from different parts of Sweden but all know each other quite well. Joel and Erik are terrific guys. I've learned that teamwork is the key to success, so it’s important to get along well with everyone, including team-mates and mechanics. It obviously helps if you are from a similar background."
Skoog never gets bored away from the race track. "I do so many things in my free time that it's impossible to list them all here. Skiing, cycling, running, karting, fishing and a whole lot more," he informed us, touching briefly on his private life. Also, he began studying Economics and Business Administration last year. Skoog: "However, motor racing is currently my top priority. If there's a clash of timings, then I focus on the racing and make up for the stuff I missed later on. I'm really looking forward to getting started soon. The season opener seemed a long way off a few weeks ago, but it won't be long now. I can't wait!"