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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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PORSCHE Press Release – Porsche Motorsport around the world: Newsletter 5 – August 2012

Porsche Motorsport around the world

Newsletter 5 – 2012

Stuttgart. The Motorsport Newsletter regularly provides information on Porsche Motorsport around the world.

American Le Mans Series: Two-tenths of a second shy of second win

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Flying Lizard Motorsports: Jörg Bergmeister, Patrick Long, ALMS, Mid-Ohio

Works driver Patrick Long held a clear lead with the Flying Lizard Motorsports 911 GT3 RSR at round six on the Mid-Ohio Sportscar Course (4 August), until a Corvette came within strik-ing distance during a caution phase to snatch the lead whilst the Porsche pitted for a driver change.

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Flying Lizard Motorsports: Jörg Bergmeister, Patrick Long, ALMS, Mid-Ohio

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Flying Lizard Motorsports: Jörg Bergmeister, Patrick Long, ALMS, Mid-Ohio

Joerg Bergmeister shaved the gap from five seconds to two-tenths – and took the flag in second. At the fourth race in Lime Rock (7 July), Bergmeister celebrated his 35th ALMS victory and Porsche its first win of the season.

Patrick Long, Jörg Bergmeister
2012 ALMS – Mid-Ohio

Two weeks later, Bergmeister/Long again crossed the finish line in first only to be disqualified due to a faulty air inlet system.

International GT Open: Marco Holzer and Nick Tandy continue at the lead 

International GT Open, Paul Ricard, Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Manthey-Racing, Marco Holzer (left), Nick Tandy

After securing a fifth and second place in the 911 GT3 RSR of Manthey-Racing at races nine and ten in Le Castellet (21/22 July), factory pilot Marco Holzer and his teammate Nick Tandy head into the second half of the season tied for the points’ lead with an Aston Martin squad.

International GT Open, Paul Ricard, Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Manthey-Racing, Marco Holzer, Nick Tandy

In the GTS class, the Italian customer team Autorlando Sport scored victory with Archie Hamilton and Marco Mapelli.

Grand-Am: Magnus Racing endurance champions after Indy win

P1, Magnus Racing: (l.-r.) Andy Lally, John Potter; P3, Brumos Racing: (l.-r.) Leh Keen, Andrew Davis, Grand-Am, Indianapolis

A historic success for Porsche customer motorsport: Magnus Racing won the inaugural North American Endurance Championship with the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup driven by John Potter and Andy Lally.

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, Magnus Racing: John Potter, Andy Lally, Grand-AM, Indianapolis

Potter and Lally secured the title for the Daytona 24 hour winning squad with their triumph at the three hour race in Indianapolis (27 July) – the first GT long distance race on the Grand Prix version of the legendary circuit.

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, Magnus Racing: John Potter, Andy Lally, Grand-AM, Indianapolis

The North American Endurance Championship consisted of three races: Daytona, 6 hours of Watkins Glen as well as Indy. Leh Keen and Andrew Davis rounded off the Indy weekend for Porsche clinching third place in the Brumos 911 GT3 Cup.

British GT Championship: Season enters dramatic final phase

Porsche 911 GT3 R, Trackspeed Racing, British GT, Snetterton
Jon Minshaw/Tim Harvey – Trackspeed Porsche 997 GT3 R, Steve Tandy/Joe Osborne – Trackspeed Porsche 997 GT3 R and David Ashburn/Richard Westbrook Trackspeed Porsche 997 GT3 R

Points’ leader David Ashburn heads to the final two races of the season holding a mere two-point advantage after races 7 and 8 in Snetterton (5 August).

Porsche 911 GT3 R, Trackspeed Racing: Steve Tandy, Joe Osborne, British GT, Snetterton
Star, Jon Minshaw/Tim Harvey – Trackspeed Porsche 997 GT3 R leads

Taking off into race seven from pole position, Ashburn and Richard Westbrook finished in sixth with their Trackspeed Porsche 911 GT3 R after clashing with an opponent.

Porsche 911 GT3 R, Trackspeed Racing: David Ashburn, Richard Westbrook, British GT, Snetterton
David Ashburn/Richard Westbrook Trackspeed Porsche 997 GT3 R

Joe Osborne, Steve Tandy, British GT, Snetterton

Race eight was over early for the pair after seven laps, handing double victory to Steve Tandy/Joe Osborne and Jon Minshaw/Tim Harvey in Trackspeed Racing’s two other 911 GT3 R.

French GT Championship: Beltoise and Hassid rank second overall

A successful weekend (14/15 July) for Pro GT by Almeras in Magny-Cours: Anthony Beltoise and Henry Hassid finished the first one-hour race in second and secured eighth at the second sprint with their Porsche 911 GT3 R.

Hassid and Beltoise travel to the next race weekend in Navarra (8/9 September) ranking second overall, separated from the leader by just four points.

Works drivers: Comeback for Timo Bernhard 

Timo Bernhard
VLN Langstreckenmeisterschaft Nuerburgring 2012, 6h ADAC Ruhr-Pokal-Rennen (2012-08-03): Foto: Jan Brucke

On 4 August at 12:54 p.m., Timo Bernhard took over the wheel of Manthey-Racing’s 911 GT3 R from his works driver teammate Romain Dumas to celebrate his comeback following an injury lay-off after he became an innocent victim of a crash during an Audi test drive in Sebring (USA) in March.

Porsche 911 GT3 R, Manthey-Racing: Timo Bernhard, Romain Dumas, Jochen Krumbach, VLN, Nürburgring

Engine problems after 44 minutes put an early end to Bernhard’s drive.

Porsche 911 GT3 R, Manthey-Racing: Timo Bernhard, Romain Dumas, Jochen Krumbach, VLN, Nürburgring

Works drivers: Team building for Marc Lieb/Richard Lietz in 356 Carrera GT

At the 20th Ennstal Classic (11/14 July) in Austria – one of the most important oldtimer rallies – works drivers Marc Lieb and Richard Lietz competed in a 356 Carrera GT (1960) from the Porsche Museum.

Sharing driving duties while the other read rally pace notes from the co-driver’s seat marked a new experience for the pair.

Marc Lieb commented,

“It’s a little un-nerving for a race driver to follow the directions of someone else. But it was certainly a great team building exercise.” The two finished on position 124, partly because they ran out of pet-rol on the Red Bull Ring. Lieb said, “We didn’t have our Norbert Singer at the pit wall to do our fuel calculations for us. I guess we were a little bit wrong…”

Youth Development: Porsche expands talent initiative

In addition to the company’s long-term training and support of Porsche juniors, from 2013 Porsche gives a particularly talented youngster from Carrera Cup series worldwide the chance to move up into the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup.

Porsche provides a large part of the budget. The evaluation drive takes place in autumn on a European race track.

Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup: Quartet enters final chase

Kévin Estre is in the lead after claiming his first win of the season on the Hungaroring (29 July). He sits just one point ahead of reigning champion René Rast. Ranking third is Norbert Siedler six points up on Sean Edwards, who in turn is 12 points shy of Estre.

On the Hockenheimring at its 212th race, the Supercup celebrated its 20th anniversary (22 July). Rast won, ex-Formula 1 pilot Nick Heidfeld impressed with tenth place at his guest appearance. Only two races are left on the calendar (Spa, 2 September; Monza, 9 September).

IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge by Yokohama: Miller rules Mosport

Bryce Miller made a brilliant debut for Effort Racing scoring victories at both the eighth and ninth race in Mosport (21/22 July).

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, GMG Racing: Bryce Miller, IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge, Mosport

Sean Johnston defended his lead in the Platinum Cup class with two second placings. In the fight for the Gold Cup, Angel Benitez jr. retained his lead with a win at race eight.

Porsche GT3 Cup, Wright Motorsports: Sean Johnston, IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge, Mosport

At race nine, Australian David Calvert-Jones celebrated his first win in the one-marque race series.

Carrera Cup Asia: Ragginger and Simonsen win in Ordos

The former Porsche Junior Martin Ragginger won race five in Ordos (7 July) in the 911 GT3 Cup fielded by Eagle Jiejun & Junbaojie ahead of points’ leader Alexandre Imperatori.

P1, Team Eagle Jiejun & Junbaojie: Martin Ragginger; P2, PICC Team StarChase: Alexandre Imperatori

Victory at race six (8 July) under difficult weather conditions went to guest driver Allan Simonsen after the Dane had started from the 27th and very last grid spot.

Porsche GT3 Cup, Team Eagle Jiejun & Junbaojie: Martin Ragginger, Carrera Cup Asia, Ordos

Imperatori continues his stronghold in the drivers’ standings over defending champion Keita Sawa.

Carrera Cup France: Ledogar and Vernay favourites for the title 

With four races left on the calendar, four-time winner this season Côme Ledogar holds a nar-row lead over Jean Karl Vernay.

In Magny-Cours (14/15 July) recently, Vernay chipped away at the gap with a win and two second places, whilst his opponent yielded three third placings.

Start, Kevin Estre (F)
Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup Ungarn 2012

Reigning champion and guest starter Kévin Estre (Nourry Compétition) impressed with two victories on the circuit near Nevers in France.

Carrera Cup Italia: Postiglione shunts Malucelli from the top of the table

Scoring victory and a fifth place at races seven and eight on the Red Bull Ring in Austria (4/5 August), Vito Postiglione in Antonelli Motorsports’ 911 GT3 Cup replaced Matteo Malucelli at the top of the points’ table.

Porsche GT3 Cup, Antonelli Motorsport: Matteo Malucelli, Carrera Cup Italia, Red Bull Ring

Malucelli finished Saturday’s race in second, but retired from Sunday’s event when an accident damaged the radiator.

Porsche GT3 Cup, Petri Corse Motorsport: Edoardo Piscopo, Carrera Cup Italia, Red Bull Ring

Edoardo Piscopo (Petri Corse Motorsport) clinched a pole-to-flag victory at Sunday’s race. Six races are still to be contest-ed; two points separate both front-runners.

Carrera Cup Japan: Favorites fulfil all expectations 

Porsche GT3 Cup, Team Garmin: Ryo Hirakawa, Carrera Cup Asia, Sportsland Sugo

Ryo Hirakawa in the Garmin Porsche extended his points’ lead after taking a clear sweep with pole position, the fastest race lap and victory at races six and seven at the Sportsland Sugo (28/29 July).

Ryo Hirakawa

Hiroaki Nagai claimed both wins for Ninne Racing and with these triumphs also boosted his lead in the Gentleman Class over the second-placed driver. Four races are left on the calendar.

Porsche GT3 Cup, Team Garmin: Ryo Hirakawa, Carrera Cup Asia, Sportsland Sugo

Next event: 8 September, Fuji.

Race notes: Maiden win of the season for Ebimotors at race seven of the Italian GT Cham-pionship on the Red Bull Ring (4 August) thanks to Alessandro Balzan and Giacomo Barri. The pair came third in race eight with the 911 GT3 R.

Naoki Yokomizo and Kyosuke Mineo defended their class lead in the 911 GT3 R fielded by Endless Taisan claiming fifth at race four of the Japanese Super GT in the Sportsland Sugo (29 July).

SOURCE: Photos highlighting Porsche Motorsport
Porsche AG Media Database Communication Porsche AG

Motorsportpress

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