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Monthly Archives: June 2012

Double win and points’ lead for Porsche teams at International GT Open, races 5 / 6 in Spa-Francorchamps/Belgium


(l.-r.): Olaf Manthey, Raymond Narac, Patrick Pilet, Marco Holzer Nick Tandy, Daniel Zampieri, Michael Dalle Stelle

Stuttgart. Torrential rain and difficult track conditions made just the right ingredients for a sterling showing of the Porsche teams in Spa-Francorchamps.

(l.-r.): Marco Holzer and Nick Tandy

At race six of the International GT Open on Belgium’s challenging 7.4 kilometre circuit, works driver Marco Holzer (Germany) and Manthey pilot Nick Tandy (Great Britain) clinched their third win of the season driving a 911 GT3 RSR fielded by Manthey-Racing.


Marco Holzer and Nick Tandy

The pair saw the flag 34 seconds ahead of the second-placed Porsche team with works driver Patrick Pilet and his compatriot Raymond Narac. The Frenchmen saw the chequered flag almost half a minute ahead of the third finisher.

Patrick Pilet

After the clear double victory of the 911 GT3 RSR – Porsche’s top model for customer racing – four Porsche drivers head the standings, albeit in reverse order. Pilet/Narac are the new points’ leaders thanks to two podium results and consistent points finishes in the first six races of this gripping international GT series.


International GT Open Spa-Francorchamps: Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Manthey Racing: Marco Holzer, Nick Tandy

Holzer/Tandy follow in second. The German-British pair travelled to Spa as the championship leaders but retired from Saturday’s 70 minute race after suffering tyre problems and a puncture. Porsche teams also occupy the two top spots in the team standings, where IMSA Performance Matmut leads ahead of Manthey-Racing in second.


International GT Open Spa-Francorchamps: Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Manthey Racing: Marco Holzer, Nick Tandy

Marco Holzer took up Sunday’s race from the second grid spot but took the lead before the first corner. Patrick Pilet catapulted from fourth on the grid to second, putting pressure on his makes colleague in the Manthey-911.

The Frenchman briefly disappeared out of Holzer’s mirrors when he slid off the track into the gravel on deep water but recovered to take the lead with an inspired move in the Bus-stop Chicane.


Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Manthey Racing: Marco Holzer, Nick Tandy

The Manthey squad called Holzer into the pits for the scheduled driver change earlier than the IMSA crew. Running in second, Holzer handed the car to his team mate Nick Tandy. With a brilliant first lap,

Tandy managed to put his car ahead of Raymond Narac’s 911. The reigning champion of the Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland never looked back and defended his position to the flag. The success in Spa marks the third win of the season for Holzer/Tandy after their double victory at the season-opener at the Algarve.

“This success feels really good,” said a very exhausted Marco Holzer.

The former Porsche-Junior went into the weekend with a cold and slight fever. “Today’s rain was lucky for us. On the dry circuit yesterday we had some real trouble with our tyres and had to give up after a puncture. Today I immediately took the lead after a perfect start. It’s good to lead the field because you haven’t got the spray but at the same time you’ve got to be very cautious not to aquaplane. Our Porsche was perfect today, great under braking and with an excellent balance for the fast corners. The duel with Patrick was great, but we weren’t too tough on each other. After all, our aim was a double success for Porsche. And there was no way we were going to put that at risk.”


Marco Holzer

“Man, that was quite a race,” said Patrick Pilet who finished Saturday’s race in fourth with Narac.

“In the first lap I was chasing Marco. But with all the spray I had zero viz, and I kept on hitting deep water on the track. And then it happened: I slid off the tarmac. I was really lucky to save the 911. And then I pushed like crazy. I desperately wanted to overtake Marco and make up some time. I knew that Spa is not one of my teammate Raymond’s favourite tracks. At the Bus-stop Chicane I finally made my move on Marco and handed the car over to Raymond in the lead. His task then was not to make a mistake and reach the flag safely. He did it under those incredibly difficult conditions. We are totally happy with second place and the points’ lead.”


Patrick Pilet

Autorlando Sport’s Italian-British driver pairing of Marco Mapelli and Archie Hamilton was not entirely happy after Sunday’s race.

Although the two clinched fifth place, repeating their result from the day before with the 911 GT3 R, more would have been possible in the race on Sunday. In the closing laps Hamilton found himself in a dramatic four-way battle only to lose third place while trying to avoid a spinning competitor.

Still, the team are satisfied with third place in the GTS class. This category is based on the FIA GT3 regulations, in which the Porsche 911 GT3 R competes. The Porsche 911 GT3 RSR contests the Super GT class for more powerful racer cars, which is based on FIA GT3 rules.

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Result race 5
1. Bruni/Leo (I/I), Ferrari 458 GT Italia, 1:10.58.776 hours
2. Barba/Malucelli (E/I), Aston Martin Vantage, + 28.057 seconds
3. Lopez/Montermini (ARG/I), Ferrari GT 458 Italia, + 34.956
4. Narac/Pilet (F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, + 44.646
14. Hamilton/Mapelli (GB/I), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 2.17.424 minutes
17. De Castro/Amaral (E/E), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, + 1 lap

Result race 6
1. Holzer/Tandy (D/GB), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 50:31.198 minutes
2. Narac/Pilet (F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, + 34.050 seconds
3. Dalle Stelle/Zampieri (I/I), Ferrari 458 Italia GT3, + 1:01.411 minutes
10. Hamilton/Mapelli (GB/I), Porsche 911 GT3 R, + 1:35.486

Points’ standings after 6 of 16 races
Driver
1. Narac, Pilet, Porsche, 80 points
2. Holzer, Tandy, Porsche, 76
3. Barba, Malucelli, Aston Martin, 64
4. Bizzari, Ferrari, 57

Driver GTS
1. Bizzari, Ferrari, 38 points
2. Zampieri, Dalle Stelle, Ferrari, 32
3. Hamilton, Mapelli, Porsche, 27

Teams Super GT
1. IMSA Performance Matmut, Porsche, 35 points
2. Manthey-Racing, Porsche, 34
3. Villois Racing, Aston Martin, 29

Manufacturer Super GT
1. Ferrari, 67 points
2. Porsche, 66
3. Aston Martin, 29

Race 7 and 8 of the International GT Open will be run from 13 to 17 July in Brands Hatch/Great Britain.

This is the International GT Open

Inaugurated in 2006, the International GT Open features two races per weekend with identical points’ allocation – the first race on Saturday runs over 70 minutes, the second on Sunday over 50. Two drivers share the cockpit. A handicap system ensures more suspense at the head of the field. The top three drivers of each race are handed a 15, ten or five second penalty respectively for the following race. The calendar of the race series includes eight races on selective circuits like Silverstone, Spa-Francorchamps and the Nürburgring.

One of the keys to success in the International GT Open is the stable technical regulations and the capping of costs, for instance through control tyres. The grid is divided into two classes, the stronger Super GT category and the GTS class. 

Super GT: This class is based on the FIA GT2 regulations – the 911 GT3 RSR competes here. The particularly efficient six-cylinder boxer engine in the International GT Open version delivers significantly more than 500 hp.

GTS: Based on the FIA GT3 regulations. The Porsche 911 GT3 R is fielded here, now delivering 500 hp after the new model year underwent improvements.

In 2007, Autorlando Sport won the overall classification for drivers and teams with Porsche works driver Richard Lietz (Austria) and Joel Camathias from Switzerland.

SOURCE: International GT Open –  Porsche AG Media Press Database u

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsportpress

 

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René Rast clinches 2nd win of season, a gala performance, Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, rd 5, F1 race Valencia/Spain

Sean Edwards (GB), René Rast (D)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, round 5 at the Formula 1 race in Valencia/Spain

René Rast clinches second win of season with a gala performance

Sean Edwards (GB), René Rast (D), Robert Lukas (PL)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

Stuttgart. René Rast is back in the fight for the title of the Porsche Mobil1 Supercup. With a gala performance on the Valencia Street Circuit, the Lechner Racing Team pilot impressively clinched his second win of the season on the street course around the America’s Cup harbour.

René Rast (D)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

The German saw the flag 11.539 seconds ahead of Sean Edwards (Konrad Motorsport) from Great Britain, who secured second place in front of the surprisingly strong FÖRCH Racing driver, Robert Lukas from Poland. With this result, Edwards now moves into the lead of the world’s fastest international one-make race series for the first time this season.

Sean Edwards (GB)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

It was René Rast’s race from start to finish. At the wheel of his 450 hp Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, based on the street-legal lightweight 911 GT3 RS sports car, the title defender took off from pole to immediately settle in at front of the pack.

Start, René Rast (D)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

While his pursuers battled for positions behind him, at times at loggerheads with each other, the winner of the season-opening round in Bahrain concentrated on extending his lead lap by lap.

Sean Edwards (GB), René Rast (D), Robert Lukas (PL)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

With this, he continued on from his strong showing in qualifying, in which he snubbed his rivals by clocking a stunning lap time. His third victory in Valencia after 2009 and 2010 was never under threat.

Nicki Thiim (DK)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

Behind the Monaco winner Sean Edwards, Robert Lukas put in a surprising drive at the eventful race. Third place marks the first podium result in the Porsche Mobil1 Supercup for the Pole, but he profited in the final lap from a spin by his compatriot ahead of him, Kuba Giermaziak (VERVA Racing Team). The incident threw the two-time season winner from last year back into fifth place behind Frenchman Kévin Estre (Hermes Attempto Racing).

Robert Lukas (PL)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

The second rude awakening then came after the race: Due to a jumped start, Kuba Giermaziak as well as Kèvin Estre, Norbert Siedler, Christian Engelhart, Alessandro Zampedri and Mateusz Lisowksi were subsequently handed a 30-second time penalty by the stewards of the meeting. This jumbled the results dramatically with points’ leader Norbert Siedler suffering the worst consequences: The VELTINS Lechner Racing pilot from Austria was only classified as eleventh and as a result lost his points’ lead. Germany’s Christian Engelhart, who had travelled to Valencia ranking second overall and after a drive-through penalty was classified as eighth at the finish line, was then shuffled back to 15th after his false start.

As the best Supercup newcomer, Nicki Thiim (Hermes Attempto Racing) saw the flag in fourth place. With his performance he replaces Germany’s Michael Ammermüller (VELTINS Lechner Racing) at the head of the rookie classification.

René Rast (winner):

René Rast (D)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

“That was a perfect race. Taking off from first and finishing in first – it doesn’t get better than that. There was quite a melee behind me with some competitors, and that gave me the chance to build on my lead in the first lap. I then tried to drive consistently quick lap times and not be too hard on my tyres. That worked. Thank you to my team for putting a perfectly prepared car on the track for me today.”

Sean Edwards (second):

Sean Edwards (GB)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

“What a crazy race. My start was actually quite good, but suddenly Christian Engelhart pulled alongside, and then came Kévin Estre. It was pretty tough going in the early phase. And because I had to go hard at that point, I was happy that I could conserve my tyres a little later on. For the championship second place is a great result.”

Robert Lukas (third):

Robert Lukas (PL)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

“It’s great to stand on the podium in third. Everything ran perfectly today. I took it real easy on my tyres early on and then the car became increasingly faster. Things really went well for us. The entire team has worked so hard over the last months for such a result, and I want to thank them very much for that.”

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Race result
1. René Rast (D), Lechner Racing Team, 30:40.893 minutes
2. Sean Edwards (GB), Konrad Motorsport, + 11.539 seconds
3. Robert Lukas (PL), FÖRCH Racing, + 17.643
4. Nicki Thiim (DK), Hermes Attempto Racing, + 26.975
5. Philipp Eng (A), MRS GT Racing, + 30.511
6. Sebastiaan Bleekemolen (NL), Team Bleekemolen + 35.350

Points’ standings after 5 of 10 races *
Drivers
1. Sean Edwards (GB), Konrad Motorsport, 61 points
2. Norbert Siedler (A), VELTINS Lechner Racing, 59
3. René Rast (D), Lechner Racing Team, 58
4. Christian Engelhart (D), Konrad Motorsport, 49
5. Kévin Estre (F), Hermes Attempto Racing, 47
6. Kuba Giermaziak (PL), VERVA Racing Team, 36

* The race in Barcelona was cancelled. However, the extra points for pole position were still awarded.

Silverstone: Preview for the 6th of 10 races on 8 July

On the Silverstone Circuit, one of the world’s most storied race tracks, the Porsche Mobil1 Supercup heads into the second half of the season. Drivers rave about the ultra fast circuit, whose legendary corners Copse, Stowe and Brooklands provide a unique challenge. Last year victory went to title defender René Rast. This time, local hero Sean Edwards is eager to win the race in his native country after claiming victory at his adopted home of Monaco and to improve his title chances. TV stations Eurosport and Sky broadcast the race live.

SOURCE: Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup – Porsche AG Media Press Database

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsportpress

 

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Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, rd 5 F1 race Valencia/Spain-René Rast gives his team the best time to boss birthday

René Rast (D)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup

René Rast gives his team boss pole position as a birthday present

Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup, round 5 at the Formula 1 race in Valencia/Spain

René Rast (D)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup

 At the return of the Porsche Mobil1 Supercup to the Valencia Street Circuit, René Rast (Germany) takes up Sunday’s race from pole position. At the wheel of Lechner Racing’s 450 hp Porsche 911 GT3 Cup which is based on the street-legal lightweight 911 GT3 RS sports car, the title defender nailed the fastest time shortly before the end of the qualifying session. Securing the best time on the street circuit around the America’s Cup harbour was a perfect birthday present for his team boss Walter Lechner Jnr.

Driving his team’s newly prepared 911, René Rast, winner of this race in 2009 and 2010, was an unbelievable 0.592 seconds quicker than the second-placed Monaco winner from Great Britain Sean Edwards (Konrad Motorsport).

Sean Edwards (GB)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup

In the Porsche Mobil1 Supercup, which gains it appeal not least due its extremely tight competition and tough fights for positions, this gap is huge.

Norbert Siedler (A)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup Bahrain 2012

Competing for VELTINS Lechner Racing, Norbert Siedler from Austria occupied third place another two-tenths of a second behind. The winner from Bahrain shares the second grid row with Frenchman Kévin Estre (Hermes Attempto Racing), who clinched second at Monaco.

Germany’s Christian Engelhart, the pole-sitter from Barcelona, planted his Konrad Motorsport 911 on fifth place.

Christian Engelhart (D)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup

The sixth spot went to Poland’s Kuba Giermaziak (VERVA Racing Team), who is still trying to find his old form this season after winning twice last year.

Kuba Giermaziak (PL)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup

As the best Supercup newcomer, Germany’s Michael Ammermüller (VELTINS Lechner Racing), leader of the rookie classification, achieved the seventh quickest time. Lining up alongside him on the fourth grid row is Robert Lukas (FÖRCH Racing) from Poland in eighth. Behind him on the ninth and tenth position, the oldest and youngest Supercup pilots stand side by side: Alessandro Zampedri (Team Bleekemolen) is 42, Poland’s Patryk Szczerbinski (VERVA Racing Team) is just 18 years old.

René Rast (pole-sitter):

René Rast (D)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup
GP Europa – Valencia 2012

“That’s my first pole this year, so I’m feeling very, very happy. My team put a perfect car on the track for me today, thanks for that. I like this circuit. We were very quick here in 2009 and 2010. Now I hope I can use this pole tomorrow to bring home a win.”

Sean Edwards (second qualifier):

Sean Edwards (GB)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup

“Today was much better than yesterday. After free practice we changed a lot on the car and that paid off. I only managed one fast lap but luckily that was good enough for a spot on the first grid row. Now we are feeling very optimistic for the race.”

Norbert Siedler (third qualifier):

 

“The third spot is really good, but I’m not particularly happy with the qualifying. The first lap was okay, but I made a braking mistake and it possibly cost me a better time.”

 

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Qualifying result
1. René Rast (D), Lechner Racing Team, 2:08.298 minutes
2. Sean Edwards (GB), Konrad Motorsport, + 0.592 seconds
3. Norbert Siedler (A), VELTINS Lechner Racing, + 0.773
4. Kévin Estre (F), Hermes Attempto Racing, + 0.951
5. Christian Engelhart (D), Konrad Motorsport, + 0.984
6. Kuba Giermaziak (PL), VERVA Racing Team, + 1.156

The race on Sunday will be broadcast live by TV stations Eurosport (11.45 hrs) and Sky Sport 1 (11.40 hrs). Moreover, Eurosport also airs highlights on Sunday at 20.30 hours in its “Motorsport Weekend Magazin”.

SOURCE: Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup  Porsche AG Media Press Database

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsportpress

 

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Porsche claims podium spot at the Le Mans 24 hour race, WEC, rd 3, Le Mans 24 Hours, France

Podium LM GTE Am (l.-r.): Franck Rava, Anthony Pons, Raymond Narac, Nicolas Armindo (IMSA Performance Matmut) Pedro Lamy, Jack Leconte, Patrick Bornhauser, Julien Canal (Larbre Competition) Niclas Jonsson, Michele Rugolo, Tracy Krohn (Krohn Racing)

Stuttgart. Less than four minutes were missing for Porsche to clinch its 99th class win at the Le Mans 24 Hours.

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut, Nicolas Armindo, Raymond Narac, Anthony Pons[slideshow]

With the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR fielded by the IMSA Performance Matmut team, Frenchman Nicolas Armindo, Raymond Narac and Anthony Pons had led the field just a few laps before the flag dropped on the 80th running of the long distance classic in the Sarthe. But in the final minutes, tyre damage robbed the 2011-spec 911 of all hopes for victory. Nevertheless, the joy over second place was huge for the French Porsche customer team.


IMSA Performance Matmut (l.-r.): Anthony Pons, Raymond Narac, Nicolas Armindo

“For our team and partners, Le Mans is the most important race of the year,” said team owner Raymond Narac.

“To have finished second with such a great team effort is a success that we will all savour for a long time. Thank you also to Porsche for the unbelievable support.” Nicolas Armindo said, “We focused all our work on this race. Achieving class victory at the dress rehearsal in Spa was wonderful, but it’s nothing compared to the feeling of climbing the podium here in Le Mans.”


Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut: Raymond Narac, Nicolas Armindo, Anthony Pons

Other Porsche teams had less luck this time on the legendary Circuit des 24 Heures.

In the GTE Pro class the race was over during the night for the two Porsche 911 GT3 RSR fielded by Flying Lizard Motorsports and Felbermayr-Proton.

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Flying Lizard Motorsports: Spencer Pumpelly, Patrick Pilet, Seth Neiman (79) – Jörg Bergmeister, Patrick Long, Marco Holzer (80)

Porsche works driver Patrick Long (USA), who shared the Flying Lizard 911 with his German works driver colleagues Joerg Bergmeister and Marco Holzer, slid on gravel, which another vehicle had just spread on the track in the first chicane, hit the stack of tyres and retired after 114 laps.

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Flying Lizard Motorsports: Spencer Pumpelly, Patrick Pilet, Seth Neiman

“I didn’t have a chance to bring the car safely back to the pits,” he said. It was not the first problem that the number 80 vehicle had to contend with in Le Mans. In the first race lap, a broken shock absorber cost several positions, and later tyre damage caused even more time loss. “The race wasn’t going well for us right from the start,” said Joerg Bergmeister.

“Still, we kept fighting. You never give up in Le Mans, a lot can happen here right to the end. It’s just a shame we couldn’t finish the race.”

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Flying Lizard Motorsports: Jörg Bergmeister, Patrick Long, Marco Holzer

The unexpected early retirement of the Felbermayr-Proton Porsche 911 GT3 RSR in the GTE Pro class came after 184 laps when Marc Lieb (Germany) came to a standstill on the infamous Hunaudières straight with gearbox damage.

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Team Felbermayr-Proton: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Wolf Henzler

“I wanted to shift up but couldn’t get any gears in,” said Marc Lieb, who at the time was running in fourth place with his works driver colleagues Richard Lietz (Austria) and Wolf Henzler (Germany). The trio had won in Le Mans in 2010.

“It’s such a shame we couldn’t take home points, especially at this race. Up until our retirement we were running really well. We experienced a few hiccups along the way, but mostly things were good. A podium result would have been possible.”

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Team Felbermayr-Proton: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Wolf Henzler

In the GTE Am class, Porsche had another iron in the fire for 17 hours with last year’s 911 run by Felbermayr-Proton. Team owner Christian Ried (Germany) and his Italian teammates Gianluca Roda and Paolo Ruberti, class winners of the season-opening round in Sebring, were running a promising fourth in the race.

But after 222 laps, the Porsche Cup winner Gianluca Roda had to park the 911 trackside without any drive.

However, Porsche works driver, Patrick Pilet (France) and Americans Seth Neiman and Spencer Pumpelly secured fourth place with the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR fielded by Flying Lizard Motorsports.

Taking up the race as pole-sitters in their class, they could defend their top position in the early phase of the race, only to be temporarily thrown out of the top ten after a journey into the gravel.

“First and foremost, thank you to all the teams and drivers for their superb effort,” said Porsche Head of Motorsport, Hartmut Kristen. “Regardless of the result, we must analyse the race so that we can talk to the authorities of the WEC about a more balanced grading of our cars in the GTE Pro class for the second half of the season.

We will also immediately begin preparations for the next races with the teams, as the championship classification is still open. We look forward with optimism.”

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Round four of the World Endurance Championship is run on 26 August in Silverstone/Great Britain.

Result

GTE Am class
1. Bornhauser/Canal/Lamy (F/F/P), Chevrolet Corvette, 329 laps
2. Armindo/Narac/Pons (F/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 328
3. Krohn/Jonsson/Rugola (USA/S/I), Ferrari F458 Italia, 323
4. Pilet/Neiman/Pumpelly (F/USA/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 313
5. Belloc/Bourret/Gibon (F/F/F), Chevrolet Corvette, 309
8. Daniels/Palttala/Camathias (GB/SF/CH), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 290

This is the World Endurance Championship
Sports prototypes and GT vehicles contest the World Endurance Championship, for which double points are awarded in Le Mans. They are divided into four classes that start together but are classified separately:

LMGTE Pro class: This class is reserved for slightly modified standard sports cars with 440 to 500 hp and a minimum weight of 1,245 kilograms (e.g. Porsche 911 GT3 RSR).

LMGTE Am class: Like the LMGTE Pro, but the regulations stipulate that only last year’s cars are eligible and there must be no more than one professional driver per vehicle.

LMP1 class: Sports prototypes with up to 550 hp and a minimum weight of 900 kilograms.

LMP2 class: Sports prototypes with around 440 hp and a 900 kilogram minimum weight.

SOURCE: Le Mans 24 Hours and the World Endurance Championship

Porsche AG Media Database

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsportpress

 

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