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Porsche 911 RSR sets the second fastest lap time in warm-up, Sports Car World Endurance Championship WEC, rd 3, Le Mans 24 Hours/France

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Porsche. The Porsche AG Team Manthey squad has concluded the preparations for the start of the Le Mans 24 Hours on Saturday morning with the second fastest lap time in the GTE-Pro class.

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It was posted by the Porsche 911 RSR with the starting number 92 shared by Porsche works drivers Romain Dumas (France), Marc Lieb (Germany) and Richard Lietz (Austria).

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The #91 Porsche 911 RSR with their works driver colleagues Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), Timo Bernhard (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France) scored the fourth quickest time.

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In the GTE-Am class, Porsche works driver Patrick Long (USA) achieved the top time. He shares the cockpit of the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR fielded by the Dempsey Del Piero-Proton squad with Hollywood star Patrick Dempsey (“Grey’s Anatomy”) and Joe Foster (both USA).
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The Le Mans 24 Hours takes off today at 15.00 hours. Eurosport International and Eurosport 2 alternately broadcast the entire race live. On the internet the race can be viewed live on http://www.fiawec.com.

Quotes after the warm-up

Timo Bernhard (# 91): “We have checked the car again and everything is fine. Our times in each sector were good. I’m pleased that it will soon get going. We’re feeling confident for the race.”

Richard Lietz (# 92): “We practiced driver changes and went out with a full tank to find the braking points and to see how the car handles. We didn’t make any changes to the set-up. The warm-up is a great chance for drivers and teams to refocus again on the race.”

Romain Dumas (# 92): “The warm-up was the first time this weekend that I drove on a dry track, so it was important for me. The car felt good. We are all very confident for the race.”

Patrick Long (#77): “I used the warm-up to try out the medium tyres for the first time and that made a big difference. Unfortunately we were on the wrong tyres in qualifying but that’s the past. Patrick didn’t get a chance to drive because of the red flag. But that’s not so bad, he knows what to do. We have a good car for the race and we’re feeling very optimistic.”

Result warm-up
GTE-Pro class
1. Vilander/Kobayashi/Beretta (SF/J/MC), Ferrari 458 Italia, 3:58.796 min.
2. Dumas/Lieb/Lietz (F/D/D), Porsche 911 RSR, 3:58.796
3. Bruni/Fisichella/Malucelli (I/I/I), Ferrari 458 Italia, 3:59.935
4. Bergmeister/Bernhard/Pilet (D/D/F), Porsche 911 RSR, 4:00.593
5. Bertolini/Al Faisal/Qubaisi (I/KSA/UAE), Ferrari 458 Italia, 4:03.317

GTE-Am class
1. Long/Dempsey/Foster (USA/USA/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 3:58.358 min.
2. Nygaard/Simonsen/Poulsen (DK/DK/DK), Aston Martin, 4:01.401
3. Henzler/Milesi/Gibon (D/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 4:03.312
5. Ried/Roda/Ruberti (D/I/I), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 4:03.658

SOURCE:

Le Mans 24 Hours and the sports car World Endurance Championship WEC

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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Sports Car World Endurance Championship WEC, rd 3, Le Mans 24 Hours/France: Best Porsche 911 RSR 3rd on grid at Le Mans debut

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Stuttgart. At its first Le Mans 24 Hours outing, the best Porsche 911 RSR takes up the race on Saturday from the second grid row in the GTE-Pro class. In qualifying for the long distance classic in France, which was held for the first time 90 years ago,

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Porsche works drivers Romain Dumas (France), Marc Lieb (Germany) and Richard Lietz (Austria) improved their time in the last lap and planted the #92 Porsche 911 RSR on third place.

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Their factory pilot colleagues Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), Timo Bernhard (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France) concluded the qualifying in seventh at the wheel of the number 91 vehicle. Both 911 RSR are fielded by Porsche AG Team Manthey.

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As the best Porsche in the GTE-Am class, the 911 GT3 RSR of the Proton Competition team in which Christian Ried (Germany) shares driving duties with his Italian teammates Gianluca Roda and Paolo Ruberti, achieved the second quickest time.

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The 911 fielded by IMSA Performance Matmut with Porsche works driver Wolf Henzler (Germany) as well as Frenchmen Pascal Gibon and Patrice Milesi set the fifth quickest time. At his first Le Mans start with Porsche,

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Hollywood star Patrick Dempsey (“Grey’s Anatomy”) starts from seventh on the grid with support from Porsche works driver Patrick Long and Joe Foster (all USA).

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The Le Mans 24 Hours takes off of Saturday at 15.00 hours. Eurosport broadcasts the entire race live on its channels Eurosport International and Eurosport 2.

On the internet, the long distance classic can be followed live on http://www.fiawec.com.

Quotes after the third qualifying

Wolfgang Hatz, Board Member for Research and Development at Porsche AG:

“We are quite pleased with this result. Our aim was to beat Ferrari and we have achieved this. We’re only five-hundredths of a second shy of the first grid row which gives us hope for the race.”

Hartmut Kristen, Porsche Head of Motorsport:

“The changing weather conditions and many interruptions made for a pretty exciting qualifying. You could actually forget about a normal programme. Marc’s improvement to third place in the final lap has shown how important it was to push to the end today.”

Joerg Bergmeister (# 91):

“My qualifying was quite messed up. I went out on the first set of tyres but got held up by slower cars and had to reduce speed because the yellow flags came out. The same happened with my second set – first traffic, then yellow-flagged. In my third fast lap I went all out and was a bit late on the brakes in the first corner. That was the end of my qualifying. But Marc’s time underlined what would have been possible. This makes me confident for the race.”

Patrick Pilet (# 91):

“Our chances look good for the race. For me as a Frenchman Le Mans is the highlight of the year. To win here would be the greatest. We have a good car and we’ll do our utmost in the race.”

Timo Bernhard (# 91):

“The conditions were wrong today to learn anything significant about our car. I drove my five mandatory night laps. We could face such mixed conditions in the race, so it was important to see if everything was okay with the car. At the time I was sitting in the car it made no sense to risk too much.”

Marc Lieb (# 92):

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“I spent about an hour at the wheel and was able to get used to the difficult conditions. The track was almost dry towards the end, only slightly damp in the second chicane. There I had to be careful on the brakes. Our car’s balance is good, not yet perfect, but we have definitely made great progress.

That I drove over the finish line three seconds before the end of the session and achieved the third fastest lap time was of course perfect timing. This is also a big motivation for the race. A huge thank you to my team. The boys have worked really hard over the last weeks and months to make our new 911 RSR even better.”

Richard Lietz (# 92):

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“A good grid position in Le Mans is a matter of prestige, even if it doesn’t play a major role in the race. But when you come with a new car, like us, you naturally want to be as far up the front as possible, so we are delighted with third place.

Marc has made it more exciting and drove a great time right when everyone thought it was over.”

Romain Dumas (#92):

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“In Le Mans the regulations stipulate that all competitors must turn five qualifying laps during the night. Since I didn’t get to drive yesterday, I turned my five laps today. At the time I went out, the track half dry, half wet. That wasn’t much fun.”

Wolf Henzler (#67):

“I was on wets, but the track was too dry for that towards the end. I should actually have gone out on slicks, but when the conditions are so difficult and it is night time, you obviously don’t want to take any unnecessary risks.”

Jean-Karl Vernay (#76):

“It’s not decisive whether you take up a 24 hour race from fifth, sixth or seventh place. That’s why we didn’t go all out to try and improve our time under such tricky conditions. We’ve added many new parts for the race and will attempt to finish as far up the field as possible.”

 

Christian Ried (#88):

“These conditions made it tough for everyone. You drive out, it starts to rain, you come in, the rain stops – this doesn’t give you the insights you need for the race. Today, it was really just a matter of us all turning our mandatory laps at night.”

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Result 3rd qualifying
GTE-Pro class
1. Bell/Makowiecki/Senna (GB/F/BRA), Aston Martin, 3:54.635 minutes
2. Dumbreck/Mücke/Turner (GB/D/GB), Aston Martin, 3:55.445
3. Dumas/Lieb/Lietz (F/D/A), Porsche 911 RSR, 3:55.491
4. Fisichella/Bruni/Malucelli (I/I/I), Ferrari F458 Italia, 3:55.909
7. Bergmeister/Bernhard/Pilet (D/D/F), Porsche 911 RSR, 3:56.573

GTE-AM class
1. Nygaard/Poulsen/Simonsen (DK/DK/DK), Aston Martin, 3:57.776 minutes
2. Ried/Roda/Ruberti (D/I/I), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 3:58.889
3. Campbell/Goethe/Hall (GB/D/GB), Aston Martin, 3:59.805
5. Henzler/Gibon/Milesi (D/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 4:00.053
6. Collard/Perrod/Crubile (F/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 4:00.682
7. Dempsey/Long/Foster (USA/USA/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 4:00.916
8. Narrac/Bourret/Vernay (F/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 4:01.713

SOURCE:

Le Mans 24 Hours and the sports car World Endurance Championship WEC

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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Le Mans 24 Hours / World Endurance Championship – Confirmed Porsche entry for Le Mans

24h Le Mans

24h Le Mans

Organizer confirms Porsche entry for Le Mans

Stuttgart. Porsche AG fields two new 911 RSR based on the 991 model generation at this year’s Le Mans 24 Hours and in the World Endurance Championship.

Entry for the newly developed vehicles sporting the starting numbers 91 and 92 was confirmed for the GTE class by the organisers ACO and FIA today in Paris.

The factory squad “Porsche AG Team Manthey” will run both 911 RSR race cars.

Contesting the event in the #92 Porsche 911 RSR are Porsche works drivers Marc Lieb (Germany) and Richard Lietz (Austria).

Marc Lieb

Marc Lieb

Richard Lietz

Richard Lietz

The pair has already shared a cockpit in last year’s WEC. At the first two rounds of the season in Silverstone (14 April) and Spa (4 May) as well as at the Le Mans 24 hour race (22 June) they will receive reinforcement from their works driver colleague Romain Dumas (France).

Works drivers also pilot the number 91 sister car: Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) teams up with Patrick Pilet (France). In Silverstone, Spa and Le Mans the duo are joined by Timo Bernhard (Germany).

Jörg Bergmeister

Jörg Bergmeister

Patrick Pilet

Patrick Pilet

Timo Bernhard

Timo Bernhard

Additionally, the customer teams IMSA Performance Matmut and Felbermayr Proton have received a starting place in the WEC and at Le Mans, fielding the predecessor model Porsche 911 GT3 RSR in the GTE-Am category.

At the wheel of the IMSA Matmut 911, Raymond Narac (France) shares driving duties with Jean-Karl Vernay (France) who contests the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup with backing from Porsche AG this year. Vernay is the reigning champion of the Porsche Carrera Cup France.

Jean-Karl Vernay

Jean-Karl Vernay

The customer team Dempsey Racing-Proton is also delighted with its acceptance to contest the Le Mans 24 Hours.

Patrick Dempsey

Patrick Dempsey

Hollywood star Patrick Dempsey, who is known especially for his role as “McDreamy” in the hit television series Grey’s Anatomy, already contested the Le Mans race in 2009 and now climbs back into the cockpit.

Patrick DempseyALMS LAGUNA SECA 2012.USAGE:  Dempsey Racing web site and press material only..Photo:  ©2012 Rick Dole.904.806.0362.radole@earthlink.net

Patrick Dempsey
ALMS LAGUNA SECA 2012.USAGE: Dempsey Racing web site and press material only..Photo: ©2012 Rick Dole.904.806.0362.radole@earthlink.net

“We are very much looking forward to returning to Le Mans with a works team from Porsche for the first time since 1998,” says Porsche Head of Motorsport, Hartmut Kristen.

Hartmut Kristen, Head of Porsche Motorsport

Hartmut Kristen, Head of Porsche Motorsport

“The new 911 RSR performed well in earlier tests and is already proving extremely reliable on the track. Between them, our six pilots have scored eight class wins in Le Mans and have a great deal of experience with different 911 race cars.

And our customer teams in the GTE-Am class are also well prepared for the 2013 season.”

SOURCE:  Porsche Motorsport  – Porsche AG Media Press Database

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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