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Porsche aims to repeat last year’s victory at Florida’s sports car classic, 12 Hours of Sebring, USA

Press Release 13/03/2015

Porsche 911 RSR (#911), Porsche North America: Richard Lietz, Patrick Pilet, Nick Tandy

Porsche 911 RSR (#911), Porsche North America: Richard Lietz, Patrick Pilet, Nick Tandy

Tudor United SportsCar Championship, round 2: 12 Hours of Sebring, USA

Porsche aims to repeat last year’s victory at Florida’s sports car classic

Stuttgart. The Sebring 12 Hours is the oldest and toughest sports car race in the USA. Three Porsche 911 RSR will tackle the GTLM class at the 63rd running of the prestigious classic contested on the Sebring International Raceway on 21 March.

For the Porsche North America works team and the Falken Tire customer squad, eight works drivers will do their utmost to repeat Porsche’s win from last year on the airfield circuit in the heart of Florida, which is notorious for its bumpy surface. With 18 overall victories and 67 class wins, Porsche is the most successful manufacturer in the history of the Sebring 12 hour race.

The race
The Sebring International Raceway hosted the inaugural race on 31 December 1950. Built on a former airfield, the circuit with its 17 corners is 5.954 kilometres long. Immortalised on the winners’ list are racing legends like Juan Manuel Fangio, Dan Gurney, Hans Hermann, Jacky Ickx and Mario Andretti. Hollywood stars Paul Newman and Steve McQueen, who finished second overall in 1970 with a Porsche 908, have also fulfilled their racing dreams in Sebring.

Porsche drivers
Six Porsche factory pilots compete for Porsche North America in Sebring. Sharing the cockpit of the #911 Porsche 911 RSR are Patrick Pilet (France), Richard Lietz (Austria) and Nick Tandy (Great Britain).

Last year’s winners Jörg Bergmeister (Germany) as well as Earl Bamber (New Zealand) and Frédéric Makowiecki (France) share driving duties in the number 912 vehicle.

Tackling the race for the Falken Tire customer outfit are the Porsche works drivers Wolf Henzler (Germany) and Patrick Long (USA), reinforced by Bryan Sellers (USA). Porsche Junior Connor de Phillippi (USA) contests the GTD class at the wheel of a Porsche 911 GT America fielded by Muehlner Motorsports.

 Porsche 911 RSR (#17), Team Falken Tire: Wolf Henzler, Patrick Long, Bryan Sellers


Porsche 911 RSR (#17), Team Falken Tire: Wolf Henzler, Patrick Long, Bryan Sellers

The Porsche vehicles
The Porsche 911 RSR and the Porsche 911 GT America, which are run in the Tudor United SportsCar Championship, are based on the seventh generation of the iconic 911 sports car. As the successor to the winning 911 GT3 RSR, the 470 hp 911 RSR last season scored victories at America’s most prestigious long-distance classics in Daytona, Sebring and Petit Le Mans. For 2015, the winning racer from Weissach has received improvements in many areas.

Porsche 911 RSR (#912), Porsche North America: Jörg Bergmeister, Earl Bamber, Frédéric Makowiecki

Porsche 911 RSR (#912), Porsche North America: Jörg Bergmeister, Earl Bamber, Frédéric Makowiecki

The Porsche 911 GT America, built specifically for the GTD class of the 2014-inaugurated Tudor United SportsCar Championship, features a four-litre, six-cylinder engine and also produces 470 hp. The vehicle is an improved version of the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, the most successful and widely-produced race car in the world.

Porsche’s successes
The first outright victory for Porsche in Sebring came in 1960 courtesy of Hans Herrmann and Olivier Gendebien in the Porsche 718 RS/60; the most recent in 2008 was clinched by Timo Bernhard, Romain Dumas and Emmanuel Collard with the Porsche RS Spyder. Porsche’s list of successes also includes no less than 67 class wins at this race. The most recent success was last year with Jörg Bergmeister, Michael Christensen and Patrick Long at the wheel of the Porsche 911 RSR.

The schedule
The 12 Hours of Sebring takes off on Saturday, 21 March, at 10.45 hrs local time (16.45 hrs CET) and can be viewed live in the Internet on www.imsa.com as well as on the motorsport channel Motors TV.

Comments before the race
Dr.Frank-Steffen Walliser, Porsche Head of Motorsport: “After Daytona, Sebring is the second great long distance classic on the Tudor United SportsCar Championship calendar. Although the race is only half the duration of Daytona, it is almost tougher because of the very demanding and bumpy track.”

Dr. Frank Walliser, Overall 918 Spyder Project Manager

Dr. Frank Walliser, Overall 918 Spyder Project Manager

Patrick Pilet (#911): “Sebring is a very special race on a very special circuit. It’s always a hard fight for victory and the avid fans give the whole event a fantastic ambience.”

 Porsche North America: Patrick Pilet


Porsche North America: Patrick Pilet

Nick Tandy (#911): “It’s always a highlight to compete in Sebring, regardless in which series you compete for the rest of the year. On this storied track you truly breathe sports car history and that fascinates me.”

Porsche North America: Nick Tandy

Porsche North America: Nick Tandy

Richard Lietz (#911): “Sebring is a race that throws extremes at you. You can’t afford to make the slightest error – if you do you have no chance.”

 Porsche North America: Richard Lietz


Porsche North America: Richard Lietz

Earl Bamber (#912): “It didn’t go so well for us at Daytona, so now I’m hoping we can make up lost ground in the championship at Sebring.”

 Porsche North America, Earl Bamber


Porsche North America, Earl Bamber

Jörg Bergmeister (#912): “Sebring is a real classic. To drive at the limit on this bumpy track takes everything from a driver. But it’s always huge fun.”

 Porsche North America: Joerg Bergmeister


Porsche North America: Joerg Bergmeister

Frédéric Makowiecki (#912): “At Daytona we weren’t able to really underline the potential of the 911 RSR over the whole distance. Now I’m hoping we can do this in Sebring and fight for victory.”

Porsche North America: Frédéric Makowiecki

Porsche North America: Frédéric Makowiecki

Wolf Henzler (#17): “Last year Sebring was the first race with the 911 RSR for my Falken Tire team. Since then we’ve won Petit Le Mans and now I reckon our chances for victory in Sebring look good as well.”

Team Falken Tire: Wolf Henzler

Team Falken Tire: Wolf Henzler

Patrick Long (#17): “Even though I’m concentrating on my WEC campaign with Patrick Dempsey, I’m looking forward to the chance of supporting Wolf and Bryan in Sebring.”

Team Falken Tire: PatrickLong

Team Falken Tire: PatrickLong

This is the Tudor United SportsCar Championship
The Tudor United SportsCar Championship is a new sports car race series contested in the USA and Canada which was run in 2014 for the first time.

The series was formed from the merger of the American Le Mans Series and the Grand-Am Series. Sports prototypes and sports cars start in four different classes: GTLM (GT Le Mans), GTD (GT Daytona), P (Prototype) and PC (Prototype Challenge). The Porsche 911 RSR runs in the GTLM class, with the Porsche 911 GT America contesting the GTD class.

Source:
Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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Porsche keen to repeat last year’s GT victory, Sports Car World Championship WEC, rd 3, Le Mans 24 Hours/France

 

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer, Frederic Makowiecki, Richard Lietz

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer, Frederic Makowiecki, Richard Lietz

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Patrick Pilet, Joerg Bergmeister, Nick Tandy

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Patrick Pilet, Joerg Bergmeister, Nick Tandy

 

Stuttgart. It was a debut made to order: At its first ever outing at the 24 Hours of Le Mans last year, the Porsche 911 RSR brought home a double victory. At the 82nd edition of the world’s most famous long distance race, contested on the Circuit des 24 Heures on 14/15 June, Porsche Team Manthey will again field a pair of 911 RSR in the GTE-Pro class. Taking up the challenge alongside the factory squad, Porsche customer teams from Europe and America again contest the GTE-Am class, which Porsche also won last year. The classic event in provincial France, where Porsche is chronicled as the most successful manufacturer with 16 overall victories, is regarded as the highlight of the Sports Car World Endurance Championship (WEC).

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The race
First contested in 1923, the 24 Hours of Le Mans is the toughest automobile race in the world and represents the greatest challenge motorsport has to offer. What makes this classic so unique is also the 13.65 kilometre “Circuit des 24 Heures”, one of the oldest and fastest race tracks in the world with 38 corners and the legendary five-kilometre long Mulsanne straight. Almost 75 percent of a lap is driven at full throttle.

Porsche drivers
Double points are awarded for round three of the Sports Car World Endurance Championship WEC at Le Mans. Tackling the GTE-Pro class in the number 91 Porsche 911 RSR are Porsche factory pilots Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), Patrick Pilet (France) and Nick Tandy (Great Britain). Sharing the #92 cockpit are their works driver colleagues Marco Holzer (Germany), Frédéric Makowiecki (France) and last year’s winner Richard Lietz (Austria). Customer teams take on the GTE-Am class with a pair of 911 RSR: For the Dempsey Racing-Proton outfit, Patrick Dempsey (USA) and Joe Foster (USA) join forces with Porsche works driver Patrick Long (USA). Christian Ried (Germany), Porsche junior Klaus Bachler (Austria) and Khaled Al Qubaisi (Abu Dhabi) compete for Proton Competition. The customer squads IMSA Performance Matmut and Prospeed Competition each bring two Porsche 911 GT3 RSR in last year’s spec to the start. IMSA Performance Matmut has contracted an all-French driver line-up with Erik Maris, Jean Marc Merlin and Eric Hélary as well as Raymond Narac, Nicolas Armindo and David Hallyday. Taking on the challenge for Prospeed Competition are Cooper MacNeil (USA), Bret Curtis (USA) and Jeroen Bleekemolen (Netherlands) as well as Frenchmen Francois Perrodo and Emmanuel Collard.

The Porsche 911 RSR
The Porsche 911 RSR which Porsche has campaigned in the Sports Car World Endurance Championship since 2013 is based on the seventh generation of the iconic 911 sports car. At its race debut last year the 470 hp winning racer from Weissach scored a brilliant double victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. For 2014, the 911 RSR received improvements in many areas. In addition to winning the WEC season opener at Silverstone, this racer has also clinched victories at the long distance classics at Daytona and Sebring. Through the balance of performance ruling, the 911 RSR for Le Mans must now weigh 25 kilograms more than last year’s contender, with the restrictors reduced from 29.6 to 29.3 millimetres.

The schedule
Free practice on the Circuit des 24 Heures is held on Wednesday, 11 June, from 16.00 to 20.00 hrs, followed by the first qualifying session from 22.00 hrs to midnight. Two more qualifying sessions follow on Thursday, 12 June, from 19.00 to 21.00 hrs and from 22.00 hrs to midnight. The start flag for the 24 hour pursuit drops on Saturday, 14 June, at 15.00 hours. The 56-strong field is sent on its way by ex-Formula 1 World Champion Fernando Alonso.

TV tips
Eurosport International and Eurosport 2 alternately broadcast the complete race live. The last two hours of free practice as well as the three qualifying sessions and the warm-up are also televised live. Also aired during the week are various programmes highlighting the world’s most famous long distance race with news, interviews, portraits and background reports. Detailed TV information is available on http://www.eurosport.com.

Quotes before the race

Hartmut Kristen, Head of Porsche Motorsport:

“Le Mans is the highlight of the year. For our teams and drivers this race represents an exceptional challenge – and we’re feeling highly motivated and very well prepared. After our double victory at the season-opener in Silverstone, our car now has to carry 25 extra kilograms of ballast and the diameter of the two restrictors is now 0.3 millimetres smaller than last year’s. When considering the additional changes made, as against 2013, at one or the other competitor one has to question to what extent is the Balance of Performance actually balanced. We feel it is a matter of utmost urgency in the spirit of the sport to find a regulation for the classification of vehicles where you don’t have to fear being punished for a good performance, like what happened to us after Silverstone. Nevertheless, we’ll work extremely hard to do a good job at Le Mans – just like last year.”

Joerg Bergmeister (#91):

“I’ve raced at Le Mans since 2002 and it’s a fantastic feeling to be back again this year. It’s the season highlight for me. This race has a very special atmosphere and it’s always incredibly demanding. More than anything I enjoy the extremely fast corners, they’re the most fun. Last year we came second behind our teammates and I wouldn’t mind at all if we switch positions this year.”

Patrick Pilet (#91):

“Le Mans is a very special race, especially for me as a Frenchman. It’s always an incredible feeling to go racing on such an extreme circuit in front of so many fans. Aside from the Indy 500 and the Monaco Grand Prix, Le Mans is the greatest race on Earth. We are well prepared and our 911 RSR is a strong contender, especially on the long straights. It would be fantastic if we could turn this into a win. We were so close last year.”

Nick Tandy (#91):

“Ever since I began racing for Porsche at Le Mans in 2010 it has been my goal to secure a podium spot here. You only get this chance once a year and I’ll do everything within my power to make it happen. For a race driver, Le Mans is a magical place. Even when you arrive in the paddock you get a sense of the great history. And the Circuit des 24 Heures is something very special with its unique combination of race track and normal country roads. It’s an honour for me to drive again for Porsche at Le Mans this year.”

Marco Holzer (#92):

“At my first race in Le Mans in 2010 we managed to achieve a podium finish with third place. When I think back to the cheering crowds at the award ceremony it still sends shivers down my spine. I’d very much like to experience this feeling again and our chances don’t look too bad. We have a great car and a strong team behind us. But in Le Mans you can’t afford to make one mistake. You have to be totally focussed otherwise you can forget it.”

Frédéric Makowiecki (#92):

“As a Frenchman you simply have to race at Le Mans. And you want to win. Your family is watching at the track, your friends are there supporting you. This makes it hugely motivating to achieve everything you’ve set out to do. As a child I dreamed of Porsche. I launched my racing career with Porsche. If I could now win Le Mans with Porsche, well that would just be the best thing in the world. But first we have to face 24 gruelling hours where pretty much anything can happen.”

Richard Lietz (#92):

“I have many wonderful memories of Le Mans, especially my wins in 2007, 2010 and 2013. It’s the greatest race in the world. I love it. If I couldn’t be here as a driver, I’d buy a ticket and watch the race as a spectator. Earlier, only victory in Le Mans counted. Since 2013, it has become part of the Sports Car World Endurance Championship which means that if you can’t win then you have to make sure you bring home as many points as possible. The connection between Porsche and Le Mans is pure racing fascination. Getting the chance to compete at Le Mans for Porsche, the most successful manufacturer in the history of this race, is motivation enough. You automatically do your absolute best to win.”

Patrick Long (#77):

“Le Mans is always a huge challenge. Everyone wants to win, regardless of the category they’re contesting. I’m really looking forward to racing with Patrick Dempsey and Joe Foster and helping the whole team to fulfil their dreams at Le Mans. Last year we narrowly missed out on a podium spot. This time we’re determined to make it.”

SOURCE:

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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Porsche teams conduct successful Le Mans test, Sports Car WEC, test day Le Mans 24 Hours, France, GT

 

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer, Frederic Makowiecki, Richard Lietz

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer, Frederic Makowiecki, Richard Lietz

Stuttgart. At the traditional test day on the Circuit des 24 Heures on Sunday, teams and drivers entered the last and decisive preparation phase leading up to the Le Mans 24 Hours. The legendary long distance classic will be run on 14/15 June as round three of the Sports Car World Championship (WEC). Porsche Team Manthey’s two Porsche 911 RSR, which scored a double class win at their first Le Mans outing last year in the GTE Pro class, concluded a testing programme without any technical problems in dry and partly sunny conditions.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Patrick Pilet, Joerg Bergmeister, Nick Tandy

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Patrick Pilet, Joerg Bergmeister, Nick Tandy

The three Porsche customer outfits Dempsey Racing-Proton, IMSA Performance Matmut, and Prospeed Competition, also used the test day to set up their cars for the challenging 13.629 kilometre circuit. They are contesting the GTE Am class. The Le Mans 24 Hours runs for the 82nd time this year and is regarded as the highlight of the season.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer, Frederic Makowiecki, Richard Lietz

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer, Frederic Makowiecki, Richard Lietz

Porsche factory pilots Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), Patrick Pilet (France), and Nick Tandy (Great Britain) took the number 91 Porsche 911 RSR through its paces. Their works driver colleagues Marco Holzer (Germany), Frédéric Makowiecki (France), and Richard Lietz (Austria), who celebrated his third Le Mans victory last year, shared driving duties in the second 911 with starting number 92 run by the Porsche Team Manthey squad. The team entrust the two factory-911 to the same driver line-ups for the race.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer, Frederic Makowiecki, Richard Lietz

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer, Frederic Makowiecki, Richard Lietz

Hartmut Kristen, Head of Porsche Motorsport:

“Basically our drivers are happy with the handling of the 911 RSR. Now we’ll focus on preparing for the race. Unfortunately Joerg Bergmeister had to make a brief excursion into the gravel trap and slightly damaged the number 91 Porsche 911 RSR when he avoided another car. It didn’t make sense to do the repairs here. We’ll take a good look at it when we get home, after all, we want to drive this car in a fortnight at the 24 hour race. I don’t think all the manufacturers laid their cards on the table today, so as to avoid risking being penalised. It would have been better to find a regulation where you don’t have to be afraid of being punished for a good performance, like what happened after our double victory at the season-opener at Silverstone. The current situation doesn’t do a season highlight like the 24 Hours of Le Mans justice.”

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister

Joerg Bergmeister (#91):

“Basically a test day is to gain as much information as possible. Unfortunately I missed the braking point in the Ford curve and actually wanted to drive straight ahead through the gravel trap to avoid hitting the kerbs at the edge. But the car took off, flew far and landed hard. For this reason, the afternoon session fell flat.”

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: (l-r) Patrick Pilet, Richard Lietz, Frederic Makowiecki

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: (l-r) Patrick Pilet, Richard Lietz, Frederic Makowiecki

Patrick Pilet (#91):

“It’s always wonderful to be back in Le Mans. It’s my all-time favourite track. And today I immediately felt great here. Our car has a great set-up and I’m certain that we’ll tackle the race well prepared.”

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Patrick Pilet, Joerg Bergmeister, Nick Tandy

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Patrick Pilet, Joerg Bergmeister, Nick Tandy

Nick Tandy (#91):

“This test in particular is always a good chance to see how the car handles on this rather unique track. Towards the end of the morning session we began to change certain things on the set-up. It’s important on such a day to make the best use of the little time you have. I’m sure we’ve done this today.”

Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer

Porsche Team Manthey: Marco Holzer

Marco Holzer (#92):

“I didn’t contest Le Mans last year so it felt great to turn some laps on this fantastic circuit again. This morning we had a lot of dirt on the track which gave very little grip, but over the course of the day the conditions improved. Today it was all about exploring how our tyres behave on this very special circuit and how the grip level changes. We managed to do what we had planned and we can now head to the race feeling quite confident.”

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Richard Lietz,  Frederic Makowiecki

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche Team Manthey: Richard Lietz, Frederic Makowiecki

Frédéric Makowiecki (#92):

“We tried out several things on the car, but the many safety car phases, which were intended as a practice for the race, made this somewhat difficult. Still, this test day was a good preparation for the race. We learned a lot and I hope that we can use what we’ve learned in two weeks.”

Porsche Team Manthey: Richard Lietz, Marco Holzer, Olaf Manthey

Porsche Team Manthey: Richard Lietz, Marco Holzer, Olaf Manthey

Richard Lietz (#92):

“The test day ran well and we made the best use out of it. First and foremost it was about seeing how the tyres and the car worked together on a circuit that at times runs on a normal country road. I feel we’ve made progress and I’m looking forward to the race.”

The 24 Hours of Le Mans is contested on 14/15 June as round three of the Sports Car World Endurance Championship WEC on the Circuit 24 Heures in Le Mans/France. Double points towards the championship are awarded for drivers, teams and manufacturers.

Dempsey racing Proton: Patrick Dempsey

Dempsey racing Proton: Patrick Dempsey

Dempsey racing Proton: Patrick Dempsey

Dempsey racing Proton: Patrick Dempsey

Dempsey racing Proton: Patrick Dempsey, Joe Foster

Dempsey racing Proton: Patrick Dempsey, Joe Foster

Source: Communication Porsche AG, Motorsport Press

 

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24 hours of Le Mans, Interview with Wolfgang Hatz, “Porsche is part of Le Mans, and Le Mans is part of Porsche”

 

24 hours of Le Mans, Interview with Wolfgang Hatz

“Porsche is part of Le Mans, and Le Mans is part of Porsche”

Stuttgart. This coming Sunday on June 1, the entries for what will be the 82nd running of the legendary 24 hours of Le Mans will be testing at the famous track. It is the final test prior to arguably the toughest motor race in the world. Porsche vehicles have been on the starting grid continuously for 63 years, and the German sports car manufacturer is the record holder with 16 overall victories and 103 class victories. The most recent class victory was last year with two 911 RSRs one-two in the GTE Pro category. To date, the last overall victory was 16 years ago, as Porsche has not competed in the top class since 1998. Porsche returns there this year and faces the new FIA-efficiency regulations with the innovative 919 Hybrid, which limits the energy consumption per lap. In parallel to this, the GT team is trying to build on the success of the previous year. A gigantic factory involvement. There are also six private Porsche teams starting the event; the most well known driver and team owner is Patrick Dempsey, racing car driver and American actor. As Member of the Executive Board, Research and Development, at Porsche AG, Wolfgang Hatz is responsible for the Porsche factory involvement.

Wolfgang Hatz, Porsche Motorsport Night of Champions 2013

Wolfgang Hatz, Porsche Motorsport Night of Champions 2013

Mr Hatz, when and why did Porsche decide to return to the top class of the sports car World Endurance Championship (WEC) and Le Mans?

Wolfgang Hatz: “This was in 2011. We were and still are well positioned in the GT category, but it is time for the brand to re-enter at the elite level. The options for this are easily understandable. There is Formula 1, and there is the WEC with Le Mans. An essential criteria for the decision was the desire to establish the project at Porsche itself, so the expertise would be developed and remain in-house. The World Endurance Championship including Le Mans suits us best, it is a real team sport. This is especially true of the team of drivers. But we also needed to create the infrastructure for this first: new buildings, a team of 230 people, every other one of which is an engineer.”

Did the historical connection to Le Mans also play a role?

Wolfgang Hatz: “Porsche is part of Le Mans, and Le Mans is part of Porsche. They fit together. Nevertheless, no one makes these kind of investments due to nostalgia; they have to pay off in the future. As far as I can remember, there was never a regulation that gave the engineers so much freedom and required so much innovation. The obligation towards producing a hybrid and the efficiency formula represent revolutionary challenges. I am proud that our engineers ventured the furthest of any. Ultimately, Porsche customers will benefit from this.”

Porsche Team: Alexander Hitzinger, Wolfgang Hatz (Vorstand Forschung und Entwicklung Porsche AG), Fritz Enzinger, Leiter LMP1 (r)

Porsche Team: Alexander Hitzinger, Wolfgang Hatz (Vorstand Forschung und Entwicklung Porsche AG), Fritz Enzinger, Leiter LMP1 (r)

Can you explain this in laymen’s terms?

Wolfgang Hatz: “Our combustion engine is the finest and most efficient engine ever developed by Porsche. This compact two litre, four cylinder, turbo engine with direct fuel injection and a performance of over 500 PS drives the rear axle. It is the smallest engine with the least number of cylinders in the top category of the race. Our engineers also combined a fundamentally new exhaust gas energy recovery system with this engine. No one else has that. We store the energy recovered from the otherwise unproductive flow of escaping exhaust gasses in a battery. We store energy, which we generate during braking on the front axle in the same battery. When the driver retrieves energy from this reservoir comprised of the latest type of battery cells, several hundred horsepower drive the front axle. During this phase, the driver has a powerful all-wheel drive at his disposal. Our car is the only one in the field which converts energy that would otherwise simply be wasted and makes it useable, not only when braking, but also when accelerating. This represents an immense potential for future road sports cars.”

Porsche Team: Romain Dumas, Wolfgang Hatz (Vorstand Forschung und Entwicklung Porsche AG)


Porsche Team: Romain Dumas, Wolfgang Hatz (Vorstand Forschung und Entwicklung Porsche AG)

Are the efficiency regulations not to the detriment of racing itself?

Wolfgang Hatz: “Not at all; the races at Silverstone and Spa-Francorchamps have demonstrated this. The prototypes have plenty of power available; whether this is from the internal combustion engine or electrical does not matter. They must use all of the energy on each lap, otherwise it is a waste. Nothing can be saved here. These endurance races are sprints over incredible distances.”

The World Championships comprises eight races, but the focus is on Le Mans. When would the factory involvement be considered a success?

Wolfgang Hatz: “It would be terrific, if the GT team could build on the success of the previous year. However, that is literally more difficult because we had to add weight in accordance with the regulations. Porsche Team Manthey headed by Hartmut Kristen has extensive experience, which may make the decisive difference at Le Mans. The situation is completely different in the case of the Porsche team headed by Fritz Enzinger in the LMP1 class: We have no experience there at all. 2014 is a year of learning. Not admitting that would mean miscalculating Le Mans. At Spa-Francorchamps, the Porsche 919 Hybrid impressively demonstrated that the necessary speed is there with pole position and the fastest race lap. Our competitors know we are a force to be reckoned with. However, the 919 Hybrid has not yet covered the complete Le Mans distance in racing conditions. In this respect, it would be a success if one LMP1 finishes the event. Succeeding with both would be fabulous.”

Porsche Team: Timo Bernhard (l), Wolfgang Hatz (Vorstand Forschung und Entwicklung Porsche AG)

Porsche Team: Timo Bernhard (l), Wolfgang Hatz (Vorstand Forschung und Entwicklung Porsche AG)

At Silverstone, we saw you emotionally applauding the podium place in the overall standings in the pouring rain. Isn’t that the high demand Porsche imposes on itself?

Wolfgang Hatz: “That was a great moment of joy. But I am not losing sight of reality over this. We were not top-notch at Silverstone. We also benefited from the competition’s problems. But we did complete the first six-hour race with this extremely complex car and a team that has never competed before at a circuit. All the processes, especially under chaotic weather conditions, worked very well for the debut. And everyone worked extremely hard for this. The drivers showed their enormous skills but also a lot of discipline. The podium was a great experience for all of us. And we had a one-two in the GT class. The picture we saw on Sunday in England was terrific.”

Where will you be watching the 24 hour race from?

Wolfgang Hatz: “I will be on duty and will not be a spectator. Of course, I spend most of the time in the pit. I attend every race and was at the tracks for almost all the tests. Mostly, by the way, by the side of Matthias Müller, Chairman of the Executive Board, and that will also be the case on June 14/15. Come, what may.”

Source: Porsche Product and Technology Communication, Motorsport Press

 

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Porsche Factory Drivers Named for 2014 Porsche North America 911 RSR Entries

2012 ALMS - Petit Le Mans

Patrick Long

Patrick Long, Richard Lietz, Nick Tandy , Michael Christensen Named as Season-Long TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Drivers; Patrick Pilet, Joerg Bergmeister to Join CORE autosport-prepared 911 Racers for 2014 Rolex 24

Stuttgart/AtlantaPorsche AG and Porsche Cars North America (PCNA) have announced the factory drivers who will compete for the 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship in the PORSCHE NORTH AMERICA CORE autosport-prepared Porsche 911 RSR GT-Le Mans class entries.

Nick Tandy

Nick Tandy

Car no. 911 will be driven by Nick Tandy (Great Britain) and Richard Lietz (Austria), while car no. 912 will compete with Patrick Long (USA) and Michael Christensen (Denmark) at the helm, with two additional Porsche factory drivers – Patrick Pilet (France) and Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) – joining the teams for the upcoming Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Jörg Bergmeister

Joerg Bergmeister

 

The no. 911Tandy/Lietz/Pilet Porsche and the no. 912 Long/Christensen/Bergmeister entry will make their on-track debut at the ROAR Before the Rolex 24, January 3 – 5, 2014. The effort will utilize the new Porsche 911 RSR, the same as the 2013 24 Hours of Le Mans LM GTE-Pro class-winning entries.

Patrick Pilet, Porsche AG Team Manthey

 Patrick Pilet

The headquarters for the program will be at Porsche Motorsport North America (PMNA) in Santa Ana, Calif. CORE autosport, Rock Hill, South Carolina, will act as the competition partner for the program.

Richard Lietz

Richard Lietz

There is a wealth of endurance racing championship experience with this driver lineup, with Lietz scoring class wins at both the Rolex 24 (2012) and the 24 Hours of Le Mans (2010, 2013); and Patrick Long winning his class at the Rolex 24 (2009), 12 Hours of Sebring (2005), 24 Hours of Le Mans (2004, 2007), and Petit Le Mans (2005, 2006, 2007).

Michael Christensen, Porsche JuniorMichael Christensen, Porsche Junior

Christensen, in his first year as a Porsche Junior in 2013, finished sixth in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup series season standings with one event win in addition to the Rookie of the Year title.  Tandy finished the 2013 American Le Mans Series with a flare by co-driving the Team Falken Tire Porsche to the GT class victory at Petit Le Mans.  As for the Rolex 24 third driver additions, Bergmeister and Pilet are endurance veterans as well. Bergmeister has won the Rolex 24 (2002, 2003, 2009), 12 Hours of Sebring (2004, 2005, 2008), 24 Hours of Le Mans (2004), and Petit Le Mans 2003 – 2007).  Pilet, a former Porsche Carrera Cup France champion, has a win at the 24 Hours of Dubai to his credit.

The 2014 Rolex 24 at Daytona will take place January 25 – 26, 2014.

The 2014 Porsche 911 RSR

The new 911 RSR is based on the seventh generation of the iconic 911 sports car and follows in the footsteps of its successful predecessor, the 911 GT3 RSR. The new 911 RSR featured a win in its very first 24 Hours of Le Mans appearance in 2013. As with the production vehicle, the wheelbase grew by about four inches.    A new development from Porsche Motorsport is the lightweight racing gearbox with the six forward gears selectable via paddles on the steering wheel. The 470 hp, 4.0-litre six-cylinder boxer engine was taken from the predecessor and optimized for 2014.

One of the development priorities of the new 911 RSR was finding a better weight distribution balance. The center of gravity is also significantly lower than that of its predecessor. Carbon fiber played a crucial role in the new design. The front and rear aero components, front and rear lids, doors, underbody, wheel arches, rear wing, dashboard and center console are constructed from the very light and strong material. Moreover, all windows are made of particularly thin and light polycarbonate. Also contributing to the weight reduction is the lithium-ion battery now available on many GT road-legal models.

The look of the new 911 RSR is dominated by the flared aero components and the deep cooling air intakes at the front. With a new air ducting, the radiator is now centrally-located in the front and even more effective than in the previous model. At the same time, the cockpit air-conditioning became more efficient. The quick-change concept of the body parts was specially adapted for endurance racing, allowing for easier maintenance and shorter repair times. The front end, front lid and rear panel are fitted with quick release systems and can be replaced within seconds.

Low positioned static cornering lights provide improved vision and enhanced safety during the night. The reflective labeling and anti-glare lighting of the control elements in the cockpit help ensure optimal legibility in the dark. The arrangement of the switches on the new steering wheel and the pilot-oriented center console were designed in co-operation with the ten Porsche works drivers. All works drivers took part in the design of the 911 RSR contributing their vast experience in GT racing.

In order to keep the engineers in the pits up-to-date with all relevant vehicle data, the live telemetry transmits more than 200 different measurements straight to the pit wall stand via an antenna on the roof. Additionally, all data is stored on a memory card onboard the vehicle.

Source:   / Porsche

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Porsche pilots keen to tackle the WEC premiere in Texas Round 5

 

Sports Car World Endurance Championship WEC, round 5 in Austin/USA

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet

Stuttgart. As part of this year’s sports car World Endurance Championship WEC campaign, Porsche competes for the first time on the Circuit of the Americas on 22 September in Austin. Fans in the United States can not only look forward to seeing the successful Le Mans contender Porsche 911 RSR in action, which is fielded by Porsche AG Team Manthey in the hotly-contested GTE-Pro class.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz

Also racing on this weekend alongside the WEC is the American Le Mans Series with a strong Porsche contingent on the Formula 1 track in the Texas capital close to the Colorado River

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz

The Porsche drivers

Porsche factory pilots and Le Mans winners Marc Lieb (Germany) and Richard Lietz (Austria) share the cockpit of the number 92 Porsche 911 RSR in Austin.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz

Their works driver colleagues Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France), who recently scored third in Sao Paulo, take up the race in the number 91 car.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet

In the GTE-Am class, two customer teams field last year’s Porsche 911 GT3 RSR: Driving for IMSA Performance Matmut are the Le Mans winners from France, Raymond Narac, Jean-Karl Vernay and Christophe Bourret.

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut, Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret, Jean-Karl Vernay

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut, Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret, Jean-Karl Vernay

Competing for the Proton Competition squad is team owner Christian Ried (Germany) with his Italian teammates Paolo Ruberti and Gianluca Roda.

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Proton Competition, Christian Ried, Gianluca Roda, Paolo Ruberti

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Proton Competition, Christian Ried, Gianluca Roda, Paolo Ruberti

The Porsche 911 RSR

The 470 hp Porsche 911 RSR features consequent lightweight design and sophisticated aerodynamics. The look of the 2013 Le Mans winner (GTE-Pro) is dominated by the flared fenders and the cooling air intake at the front.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet

The exceptional livery of the car honours the anniversary, “50 years of the 911”. As the successor to the winning 911 GT3 RSR, with which Porsche customers have scored many victories and title wins since 2004, the GT racer from Weissach is based on the seventh generation of the iconic 911 sports car.

Porsche AG Team Manthey: Patrick Pilet (l), Joerg Bergmeister

Porsche AG Team Manthey: Patrick Pilet (l), Joerg Bergmeister

The schedule

The six-hour race on the Circuit of the Americas starts on 22 September at 11.00 hours local time (18.00 CEST). Eurosport International broadcasts the starting phase live from 18.00 to 19.00 hours CEST. From 20.30 to 22.30 hours, Eurosport 2 telecasts live race action.

The final phase of the race is covered live by Eurosport from 22.30 p.m. to midnight. Viewers can follow the race live on the internet under http://www.fiawec.com.

Comments before the race

Hartmut Kristen, Head of Porsche Motorsport:

Hartmut Kristen, Porsche-Motorsportchief

Hartmut Kristen, Porsche-Motorsportchief

“The race in Austin is undoubtedly a real asset and a gain for the WEC. After all, motor racing has a great tradition in America. The USA is one of the most important markets for Porsche.

That’s why we are particularly pleased to showcase the Porsche 911 RSR, which did so well recently in Le Mans, to our many US fans for the first time at a race meeting.”

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet

Joerg Bergmeister (# 91):

“Austin is one of the few race tracks in the USA that I don’t know. The greatest challenge for us all will be to quickly familiarise ourselves with the circuit and to find the optimal race set-up during practice.”

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Patrick Pilet (# 91):

“I only know this track from TV. It’ll certainly be an interesting race. Like in Le Mans and Sao Paulo, I’m hoping for another podium result.”

Patrick Pilet, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Patrick Pilet, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Marc Lieb (# 92):

“A new race always adds interest to the series. I’m looking forward to the Austin track. There are a couple of unusual corner combinations. All in all, it looks interesting and rather challenging.”

Marc Lieb, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Marc Lieb, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Richard Lietz (# 92):

“The track is new for us all. But we had an additional day of testing so it shouldn’t be a problem. Our goal is to bring home a top result and keep the bid for the championship open.”

Porsche AG Team Manthey: Richard Lietz, Marc Lieb (r)

Porsche AG Team Manthey: Richard Lietz, Marc Lieb (r)

The Sports Car World Endurance Championship WEC

In the sports car World Endurance Championship WEC, sports prototypes and GT vehicles start in four classes: LMGTE-Pro, LMGTE-Am, LMP1 and LMP2. They all compete in one race but are classified separately.

Points standings after 4 of 8 races

World Cup for Manufacturers GTE

1. Ferrari, 149 points

2. Porsche, 145

3. Aston Martin, 134

World Endurance Cup for GTE drivers

1. Darren Turner, Stefan Mücke ( Aston Martin), 86 points

2. Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz (Porsche), 84

3. Giancarlo Fisichella, Gianmaria Bruni (Ferrari), 81

4. Romain Dumas (Porsche), 72

5. Joerg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet (Porsche), 57

FIA Endurance Trophy for GTE-Am drivers

1. Jean-Karl Vernay, Raymond Narac (Porsche), 76 points

2. Jamie Campbell-Walter, Stuart Hall (Aston Martin), 70

3. Christophe Bourret (Porsche), 68

6. Christian Ried, Paolo Ruberti, Gianluca Roda (Porsche), 47

FIA Endurance Trophy for GTE-Pro teams

1. Aston Martin Racing (Aston Martin), 89 points

2. Porsche AG Team Manthey (Porsche), 87

3. AF Corse (Ferrari), 81

FIA Endurance Trophy for GTE-Am teams

1. IMSA Performance Matmut (Porsche), 76 points

2. 8 Star Motorsports (Ferrari), 74

3. Aston Martin Racing (Aston Martin), 74

5. Proton Competition (Porsche), 55

 World Endurance Championship WEC

SOURCE: Communication Porsche AG / Motorsport Press

 

 

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Porsche wins both GT classes in Le Mans, Sports Car World Endurance Championship WEC, rd 3, Le Mans 24 Hours/France

Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas, Marc Lieb, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas, Marc Lieb, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Stuttgart. At the Le Mans 24 Hours, Porsche won the fiercely-competitive GT classes. This is the class victories number 99 and 100 for Porsche at the world’s most famous long distance race.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

The new Porsche 911 RSR fielded by Porsche AG Team Manthey with Porsche works drivers Romain Dumas (France), Marc Lieb (Germany) and Richard Lietz (Austria) won the GTE-Pro class.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

From three races this was the first victory for the race car from Weissach. With the second 911 RSR, their works driver colleagues Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), Timo Bernhard (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France) made the double victory for Porsche perfect.

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut, Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret, Jean-Karl Vernay

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut, Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret, Jean-Karl Vernay

In the GTE-Am class, the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR run by the IMSA Performance Matmut squad with Frenchmen Raymond Narac, Jean-Karl Vernay and Christophe Bourret scored victory.

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut, Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret, Jean-Karl Vernay

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut, Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret, Jean-Karl Vernay

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut, Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret, Jean-Karl Vernay

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, IMSA Performance Matmut, Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret, Jean-Karl Vernay

SOURCE: Porsche AG

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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Porsche teams among the front-runners in both GT classes, Sports Car WEC, rd 3, Le Mans 24 Hours/France

 

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Stuttgart. At the Le Mans 24 Hours, the fight for victory in the strongly-represented GT classes is looking promising for Porsche teams after the first third of the race. In the GTE-Pro class, the Porsche 911 RSR with the starting number 92 was running third at its Le Mans debut shortly before midnight.

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The sister 911 RSR with the starting number 91, also run by Porsche AG Team Manthey, is sitting in fourth. The Porsche 911 GT3 RSR fielded by Dempsey Del Piero-Proton leads the GTE-Am class.

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On the Circuit des 24 Heures, 56 vehicles took off at 15.00 hours into the 81st running of the world’s most famous long distance race. In the very first race hour, with a long caution period due to an accident, Porsche works driver Marc Lieb (Germany) moved up into second place in the number 92 Porsche 911 RSR.

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After one and a half hours he even seized the lead until the first pit stop. He and his teammates Romain Dumas (France) and Richard Lietz (Austria) were locked in battle with the Aston Martin for the front spot.

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In the second 911 RSR with the starting number 91, Porsche works driver Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) made up three places, only to lose more than one minute through a safety car phase. Nevertheless, after nine hours of racing, he and his teammates Timo Bernhard (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France) are still within striking distance of the front-runners.

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In the GTE-Am class, three Porsche 911 GT3 RSR are in the lead just after midnight.

Trailing the leading 911 fielded by the customer team Dempsey Del Piero-Proton with an all-American driver line-up of Hollywood star Patrick Dempsey (“Grey’s Anatomy”), Porsche factory pilot Patrick Long as well as Joe Foster, are Christian Ried (Germany) and his Italian teammates Paolo Ruberti and Gianluca Roda in the 911 GT3 RSR run by Proton Competition. Running third are the Frenchmen Raymond Narac, Jean-Karl Vernay and Christophe Bourret competing for the IMSA Performance Matmut squad.

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Driver quotes
Joerg Bergmeister (# 91):

“Unfortunately we’ve had some real bad luck, I had just overtaken two Ferrari when the safety car was deployed right in front of me. We lost of lot of time because of this, I’m guessing a minute twenty. Then there was an incident in the pit lane with a Ferrari which shunted me towards the wall. And then my right rear tyre lost air. So it’s not going exactly as we had hoped, but one thing’s for sure – we certainly have the speed.”

Patrick Pilet (# 91): “I drove alone for quite some time so I didn’t have to battle against any other cars. It wasn’t exactly the most exciting stint of my career, but our Porsche is the epitome of reliability.”

Marc Lieb (# 92): “My start was good and the car is running smoothly. I had an interesting fight with the two Aston Martins and that was fantastic.”

Richard Lietz (# 92): “I drove a triple stint – that was a very long time in the car. We took a bit of a risk with the tyres. In the Porsche curves I had to drive straight ahead to avoid an accident with a prototype. It’s pretty wild out there, especially now at night.”

Romain Dumas (# 92): “We have to fight really hard to match the pace of the Aston Martin. Right now we are lacking that very last bit, but we’re trying to compensate as best we can. So far it’s looking pretty good.”

Wolf Henzler (#67): “At first the conditions were difficult. There were wet patches here and there. In one lap a corner was dry, in the next it was wet – or vice versa: That makes you extremely cautious when braking and you realize that you could have actually driven it much faster. Everything is running smoothly for us at the moment, we’re fast. At one point we were even leading but then we got a flat tyre on the straight before the Indianapolis corner – at something like 200 kph. The car came sideways but luckily I managed to get it under control. Unfortunately it cost us a lot of time.”

Emmanuel Collard (#75): “During my first stint the changing weather made the track conditions very difficult. It started to rain again but we kept driving on slicks. This was not without risk.”

Jean-Karl Vernay (#76): “To contest my first 24 hour race in Le Mans of all places is an unbelievable experience. It wasn’t easy with all the traffic on the track, I had to be extremely careful. Our car is running beautifully, no problems here.”

Patrick Long (#77): “We have a very fast car with a perfect set-up. This morning we made some major changes to the set-up and it paid off. Directly after my first pit stop the tyre lost air and I had to come back into the pits. This cost us a lot of time. Still, we’re very relaxed. We know that our car is good enough to run with the leaders.”

Patrick Dempsey (#77): “My first stint was okay. I didn’t want to make a mistake so I didn’t push too hard. The constantly changing track conditions made the whole thing rather entertaining, but also tough. I’m definitely having a great time. The Porsche is fantastic to drive.”

Christian Ried (#88): “That was so funny on the track. It was really hard to adjust to the changing conditions. The main thing was to keep the car on the circuit and not do anything stupid.”

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Positions after 9 hours
GTE-Pro class
1. Bell/Makowiecki/Senna (GB/F/BRA), Aston Martin, 125 laps
2. Dumbreck/Mücke/Turner (GB/D/GB), Aston Martin, 125
3. Dumas/Lieb/Lietz (F/D/A), Porsche 911 RSR, 125
4. Bergmeister/Bernhard/Pilet (D/D/F), Porsche 911 RSR, 124
5. Fisichella/Bruni/Malucelli (I/I/I), Ferrari F458 Italia, 123

GTE-AM class
1. Dempsey/Long/Foster (USA/USA/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 121 laps
2. Ried/Roda/Ruberti (D/I/I), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 121
3. Narrac/Bourret/Vernay (F/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 121
4. Perazzini/Case/O’Young (I/I/CDN), Ferrari 458 Italia, 121
6. Collard/Perrod/Crubile (F/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 119
7. Henzler/Gibon/Milesi (D/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 119

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SOURCE:

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

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

 

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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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First qualifying in Le Mans for Porsche 911 RSR, Sports Car WEC round 3, Le Mans 24 Hours/France

Porsche AG Team Manthey

Porsche AG Team Manthey

Stuttgart. Porsche AG Team Manthey used the first qualifying for the Le Mans 24 Hours on Wednesday primarily to work on the set-up of the new Porsche 911 RSR for its first outing at the world’s most famous long distance race.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey Marc Lieb, RicharM13_1331

The 911 RSR with the starting number 92, shared by Porsche works drivers Romain Dumas (France), Marc Lieb (Germany) and Richard Lietz (Austria), performed impressively in free practice by setting the best time in the GTE-Pro class, and went on to post the fifth quickest time during the first qualifying held in the night.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Jörg Bergmeister, Patrick Pilet, Timo Bernhard - M13_1364

At the wheel of the second 911 RSR with the starting number 91, their works driver colleagues Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), Timo Bernhard (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France) were clocked as seventh fastest.

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The best Porsche in the GTE-Am class was the 911 GT3 RSR run by Proton Competition on second place. Christian Ried (Germany) and his Italian teammates Gianluca Roda and Paolo Ruberti share the cockpit.

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The IMSA Performance Matmut 911 with Porsche works driver Wolf Henzler (Germany) clinched the third quickest time.

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In the 911 GT3 RSR fielded by the Dempsey Del Piero Proton squad, the all-American line-up of Hollywood star Patrick Dempsey,

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Dempsey Dell Piero Proton: Patrick Dempsey, Joe Foster, Patrick Long

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Dempsey Dell Piero Proton: Patrick Dempsey, Joe Foster, Patrick Long

Porsche works driver Patrick Long and Joe Foster secured the seventh spot.

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Quotes after the first qualifying

Joerg Bergmeister (# 91):

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“My main priority was to turn my mandatory laps. I was driving on used tyres and everything went really smoothly. As a driver you’re never really satisfied but I think that as far as the race is concerned we are on the right track.”

Patrick Pilet (# 91):

Patrick Pilet and Timo Bernhard

Patrick Pilet and Timo Bernhard

“The balance of the car was okay. On the fastest lap I encountered a lot of traffic which cost me some time. For tomorrow we have to keep working on the balance.”

Timo Bernhard (# 91):

“Today wasn’t really a labour-intensive day. In free practice I turned three laps before the session was red-flagged. When I wanted to climb in the car for my last qualifying stint the red flag came out again and after that it was no longer possible to do anything. Now I hope that I get to drive a bit longer tomorrow.”

Marc Lieb (# 92):

Marc Lieb, Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Marc Lieb, Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche AG Team Manthey

“The qualifying was quite good. I went out on used tyres and that worked well. I’m happy with the car’s balance. Of course we have to tweak the set-up but I think that we’ll manage that before the race. Compared to Spa and Silverstone we’ve made great strides.”

Richard Lietz (# 92):

(l.-r.): Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas, Marc Lieb

(l.-r.): Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas, Marc Lieb

“My first lap was really good, but I spun in the second. Luckily nothing happened and I then had no problems on the second set of tyres.”

Romain Dumas (# 92):

Romain Dumas

Romain Dumas

“Unfortunately I didn’t get the chance to drive during qualifying. I drove a couple of laps in free practice during the afternoon. It was great fun to be out on this track in a GT car.”

Marc Lieb, Romain Dumas, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Marc Lieb, Romain Dumas, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Wolf Henzler (#67):

 

“Today was my first time with the car on new tyres. The balance is still not quite perfect. I hope that we can attack it again tomorrow.”

Jean-Karl Vernay (#76):

“We have made progress in all areas since the last race in Spa. On the straights we are still a little slower but we are closing in on our competitors. I’m getting to know the circuit better with every lap I drive.”

Patrick Long (#77):

“I initially went out on used tyres to get a feel for the car. When I then tried to go for a good qualifying time with soft tyres the yellow flag came out at the first corner. Afterwards I only had time to turn the required mandatory laps for the night qualifying.”

Patrick Dempsey (#77):

Patrick Dempsey, Dempsey Dell Piero-Proton

Patrick Dempsey, Dempsey Dell Piero-Proton

“I’m very pleased to compete in Le Mans with Porsche. This is really a fantastic experience. Of course there are still some things that need improving but it’s been quite a long time since I’ve driven laps at night on this difficult track. The Porsche is great fun to drive. I’ve learned a lot and I’m feeling confident that we’ll improve even more until the race.”

Paolo Ruberti (#88):

(l.-r.): Gianluca Roda, Christian Ried, Paolo Ruberti

(l.-r.): Gianluca Roda, Christian Ried, Paolo Ruberti

“I was almost a second quicker than in free practice. In the first chicane I was a little too quick and I lost the rear. Luckily I didn’t hit anything.”

Result 1st qualifying
GTE-Pro class
1. Bell/Makowiecki/Senna (GB/F/BRA), Aston Martin, 3:55.658 minutes
2. Fisichella/Bruni/Malucelli (I/I/I), Ferrari F458 Italia, 3:55.909
3. Dumbreck/Mücke/Turner (GB/D/GB), Aston Martin, 3:56.004
5. Dumas/Lieb/Lietz (F/D/A), Porsche 911 RSR, 3:56.457
7. Bergmeister/Bernhard/Pilet (D/D/F), Porsche 911 RSR, 3:56.573

1. Nygaard/Poulsen/Simonsen (DK/DK/DK), Aston Martin, 3:58.661 minutes
2. Ried/Roda/Ruberti (D/I/I), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 3:59.246
3. Henzler/Gibon/Milesi (D/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 4:00.053
5. Narrac/Bourret/Vernay (F/F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 4:01.713
7. Dempsey/Long/Foster (USA/USA/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 4:03.378

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

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SOURCE:  Communication Porsche AG Motorsport Press

 

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First Porsche Press Video from Spa-Francorchamps rd 2 of the World Endurance Championship (WEC)

Press Release

03/05/2013

World Endurance Championship, round 2 in Spa-Francorchamps

Spa: More than just Eau Rouge

Stuttgart. A first video from Spa-Francorchamps of round 2 of the World Endurance Championship (WEC)  e weekend.

SOURCE: Porsche AG Media Database

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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Porsche pilots hope for improvement in the World Endurance Championship, rd 2 at Spa-Francorchamps/Belgium

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Stuttgart. In the qualifying for the six hour race of Spa-Francorchamps, round two of the World Endurance Championship (WEC) for sports cars on the storied circuit in the Ardennes,

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche works pilots Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France) planted their Porsche 911 RSR on the sixth grid spot in the GTE-Pro class. For Saturday’s race, they share the cockpit of the number 91 car with Timo Bernhard (Germany).

Marc Lieb, Romain Dumas, Richard Lietz, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Marc Lieb, Romain Dumas, Richard Lietz, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Their works driver colleagues Marc Lieb (Germany) and Romain Dumas (France) take up the race one position behind them. The third driver in the 470 hp # 92 GT racer is Richard Lietz (Austria). Porsche AG Team Manthey field both Porsche 911 RSR.
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From this season on, the qualifying in the WEC is conducted following a new format: For the first time, two drivers must qualify one car. The grid positions for the race are determined by the average of the two fastest timed laps of each of these drivers.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Joerg Bergmeister (#91)

“I made a small mistake in my second lap. Otherwise I could have gone a little faster. But I still pitted so that I didn’t wear the tyres too much for Patrick.”

Patrick Pilet (#91):

“The car ran very steadily and that’s good for the race. We’re not too far back and I hope that we can do even better tomorrow.”

Romain Dumas (#92):

“That qualifying wasn’t perfect. But I’m sure we’ll look better in the race.”

 

Marc Lieb (#92):

“Our car performed better than in practice so that’s a small step in the right direction. Let’s see what tomorrow’s race brings.”

Porsche AG Team Manthey

Porsche AG Team Manthey

Qualifying result
GTE-Pro class
1. Makowiecki/Bell/Senna (F/GB/BRA), Aston Martin Vantage, 2:19.811 minutes
2. Bruni/Fisichella (I/I), Ferrari F458 Italia, + 0.042 seconds
3. Kobayashi/Vilander (J/SF), Ferrari F458 Italia, + 0.278
4. Turner/Mücke/Dumbreck (GB/D/GB), Aston Martin Vantage, + 0.296
5. DallaLana/Stanaway/Lamy (CAN/NZ/P), Aston Martin Vantage, + 0.430
6. Bergmeister/Pilet/Bernhard (D/F/D), Porsche 911 RSR, + 0.432
7. Lieb/Lietz/Dumas (D/A/F), Porsche 911 RSR, + 1.049

GTE-Am class
1. Nygaard/Poulsen/Simonsen (DK/DK/DK), Aston Martin Vantage, 2:21.265 minutes
2. Potolicchio/Aguas/Malucelli (I/P/I), Ferrari F458 Italia, + 0.030 seconds
3. Goethe/Hall/Campbell-Walter (D/GB/GB), Aston Martin Vantage, + 0.284
4. Bornhauser/Canal/Rees (F/F/BRA), Chevrolet Corvette, + 0.480
5. Ried/Roda/Ruberti (D/I/I), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, + 1.425
7. Narac/Vernay (F/F), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, + 2.156

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The World Endurance Championship
In the World Endurance Championship, sports prototypes and GT vehicles start in four classes: LMGTE-Pro, LMGTE-Am, LMP1 and LMP2. They all compete together in one race but are classified separately.

SOURCE: Porsche AG Media Database Photo

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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World Endurance Championship, round 2 in Spa-Francorchamps Latest Photos

Patrick Pilet, Timo Bernhard, Romain Dumas, Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Joerg Bergmeister (l-r), Porsche AG Team Manthey

Patrick Pilet, Timo Bernhard, Romain Dumas, Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Joerg Bergmeister (l-r), Porsche AG Team Manthey

Stuttgart. Latest photos from free practice 1 in Spa-Francorchamps, where round 2 of the World Endurance Championship (WEC) is contested on Saturday.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Proton Competition, Christian Ried, Gianluca Roda, Paolo Ruberti

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Proton Competition, Christian Ried, Gianluca Roda, Paolo Ruberti

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Patrick Pilet, Romain Dumas, Joerg Bergmeister, Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz,Timo Bernhard (l-r), Porsche AG Team Manthey

Patrick Pilet, Romain Dumas, Joerg Bergmeister, Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz,Timo Bernhard (l-r), Porsche AG Team Manthey

 

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SOURCE: Porsche AG Media Databse
Communication Porsche AG Motorsport Press

 

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New Porsche 911 RSR scores 4th at its race debut, WEC, Rd 1 in Silverstone,Great Britain

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Stuttgart. The new Porsche 911 RSR narrowly missed out on a podium spot at its first race outing.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

At the six hour race in Silverstone, the season-opener of the sports car World Endurance Championship (WEC), Porsche works drivers Marc Lieb (Germany), Richard Lietz (Austria) and Romain Dumas (France) occupied fourth in the GTE-Pro class with the 470 hp race car from Weissach.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

At the wheel of the second 911 RSR, also fielded by the newly-formed Porsche AG Team Manthey, their works driver colleagues Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), Patrick Pilet (France) and Timo Bernhard (Germany) took the flag in sixth.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

On the storied British race track, the Porsche 911 RSR, based on the seventh generation of the iconic 911 sports car, took up the race after a good qualifying result from the second row of the grid and could match the pace of its strongest opponents for some time.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

At times, Patrick Pilet was running third with the #91 car, before an unscheduled pit stop cost him more than two laps and pushed him down the field.

 Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Halfway through the race, Romain Dumas was also on track for a podium place in third with the #92 car. Later, his teammate Richard Lietz even moved into second place – but at the end of the day it was not enough for a top three placing.

Wolfgang Hatz, Member of the Executive Board – Research and Development:

Wolfgang Hatz, Vorstand Forschung und Entwicklung Porsche AG, Porsche 911 RSR

Wolfgang Hatz, Vorstand Forschung und Entwicklung Porsche AG, Porsche 911 RSR

“That was the first race for the new car and the new team. The organization of the squad worked well. Of course, there are areas where we have room for improvement, but it’s like a football team, we first have to get everything running smoothly.Technically, everything worked on the 911 RSR apart from a one small thing which we will have fixed by the next race.

As far as the performance is concerned, we still have room for improvement. Naturally we also have to work on the car, it has a little too much oversteer.

But all in all I regard it as a positive weekend. It wouldn’t have been good if the car had experienced lots of problems, but that was not the case. We saw that the 911 RSR can turn consistently quick lap times over the race distance. Now if we do our homework, I think we’ll finish further up the field at the next races.”

Hartmut Kristen, Porsche Head of Motorsport:

“Both new 911 RSR reached the flag at their race debut, and there were no major technical problems. With a new team, of course there is still some fine-tuning to be done, that’s normal. We are looking forward to the next race and hope that the car will make another step forward there.”

Marc Lieb (#92):

 Marc Lieb, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Marc Lieb, Porsche AG Team Manthey

“We gained many important insights in the race. The car underlined its potential. Now we just need to work a little more on that.”

Richard Lietz (#92):

 Richard Lietz, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Richard Lietz, Porsche AG Team Manthey

“We were looking good in the fast corners, but we need to sort out the oversteer exiting the slow corners. But our engineers should be able to correct this by the next race. If so, the podium is within reach.”

Romain Dumas (#92):

“An interesting race. We learned a lot. On the straights we are a little slower than our opponents which makes overtaking very difficult. Still, there are many positives things we can take from this race.”

Joerg Bergmeister (#91):

 Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche AG Team Manthey

“That wasn’t our dream result. But we’ve learned a lot this weekend. The conditions were not the easiest, because we had no time to practice on the dry track for setting up the car.”

 Patrick Pilet, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Patrick Pilet, Porsche AG Team Manthey

“It’s bad luck that we lost more than two laps, but the mechanics did a good job. In any case, we’ve found a good basis to work on and we are optimistic for the rest of the season.”

Timo Bernhard (#91):

“Heading towards Le Mans that was a very valuable race for us. Our performance wasn’t too bad. Without the front axle problem a podium place would have been within reach.”

 Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Proton Competition, Christian Ried, Gianluca Roda, Paolo Ruberti

Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, Proton Competition, Christian Ried, Gianluca Roda, Paolo Ruberti

In the GTE-Am class, Christian Ried (Germany) and his Italian teammates Gianluca Roda and Paolo Ruberti scored fifth place in last year’s Porsche 911 GT3 RSR fielded by the customer team Felbermayr-Proton.

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Round two of the World Endurance Championship (WEC) takes place on 4 May in Spa-Francorchamps (Belgium).

Race result
GTE-Pro class
1. Turner/Mücke/Senna (GB/D/BRA), Aston Martin Vantage, 171 laps
2. Kobayashi/Vilander (J/SF), Ferrari F458 Italia, 170
3. Dalla Lana/Macowiecki/Lamy (CAN/F/P), Aston Martin Vantage, 170
4. Lieb/Lietz/Dumas (D/A/F), Porsche 911 RSR, 170
5. Bruni/Fisichella (I/I), Ferrari F458 Italia, 170
6. Bergmeister/Pilet/Bernhard (D/F/D), Porsche 911 RSR, 168

GTE-Am class
1. Nygaard/Poulsen/Simonsen (DEN/DEN/DEN), Aston Martin Vantage, 169 laps
2. Bornhauser/Canal/Rees (FRA/FRA/BRA), Chevrolet Corvette, 166
3. Potolicchio/Aguas/Peter (I/VEN/A), Ferrari F458 Italia, 165
4. Goethe/Hall/Campbell-Walter (D/GB/GB), Aston Martin Vantage, 165
5. Ried/Roda/Ruberti (D/I/I), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 165
7. Narac/Bourret/Tandy (F/F/GB), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, 163

The World Endurance Championship
In the World Endurance Championship, sports prototypes and GT vehicles start in four classes: LMGTE-Pro, LMGTE-Am, LMP1 and LMP2. They all compete together in one race but are classified separately.

SOURCE:  World Endurance Championship  Porsche AG Press Media Database

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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VIDEO: New 2013 Porsche 911 RSR in the second grid row, WEC rd 1 in Silverstone, Great Britain

 Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Stuttgart. The new Porsche 911 RSR heads into its race debut from the second grid row of the GTE-Pro class.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

In qualifying for the six hour race on the tradition-steeped British race circuit, on which the World Endurance Championship (WEC) kicks off the new season on Sunday, Porsche works drivers Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) and Patrick Pilet (France) posted the third quickest average time.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Sharing the number 91 cockpit for the race is their works driver colleague Timo Bernhard (Germany). The 470 hp 911 RSR is based on the seventh generation of the iconic 911 sports car and is fielded by the Porsche AG Team Manthey squad.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

From this season on, the qualifying in the WEC is conducted following a new format: For the first time, two drivers must qualify one car.

The grid positions for the race are determined by the average of the two fastest timed laps of each of these drivers.

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche AG Team Manthey

“As far as the set-up is concerned we have found some potential because prior to this qualifying we had very little time in the dry,” said Joerg Bergmeister.

“So we had to take a bit of a risk and almost found the right point. I think we’ll get it under control in time for the race.” Patrick Pilet commented: “In a six hour race, the qualifying times are not everything. I’m looking forward to Sunday and can’t wait for the first race with the new 911 RSR.”

 Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

In the second Porsche 911 RSR with the starting number 92, the factory pilots Richard Lietz (Austria) and Romain Dumas (France) achieved the fourth quickest average time. For the race, the pair receives support from Marc Lieb (Germany).

Romain Dumas, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Romain Dumas, Porsche AG Team Manthey

“That was the first time that I drove the car on the dry track this weekend,” stated Richard Lietz. “We knew it would be difficult. But much more important than the result was that I got a good feel for dry conditions with new slicks. I was very happy with my laps.”

Romain Dumas, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Romain Dumas, Porsche AG Team Manthey

His teammate Romain Dumas said: “That was an interesting qualifying. We are going well with our new car, but we’re still certain to learn a great deal over the season.”

Romain Dumas, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Romain Dumas, Porsche AG Team Manthey

“The qualifying went quite well so far. We were lucky that it stayed dry,” said Porsche’s Head of Motorsport, Hartmut Kristen. “The whole team is now raring to tackle the first race with the 911 RSR.”

 Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey- Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Qualifying result
GTE-Pro class
1. Turner/Mücke/Senna (GB/D/BRA), Aston Martin Vantage, 2:00.556 minutes
2. DallaLana/Macowiecki/Lamy (CAN/F/P), Aston Martin Vantage, + 0.216 seconds
3. Bergmeister/Pilet/Bernhard (D/F/D), Porsche 911 RSR, + 0.742
4. Lieb/Lietz/Dumas (D/A/F), Porsche 911 RSR, + 0.886
5. Bruni/Fisichella (I/I), Ferrari F458 Italia, + 0.946
6. Kobayashi/Vilander (J/SF), Ferrari F458 Italia, + 1.237

GTE-Am class
1. Goethe/Hall/Campbell-Walter (D/GB/GB), Aston Martin Vantage, 2:01.158 minutes
2. Nygaard/Poulsen/Simonsen (DEN/DEN/DEN), Aston Martin V., + 0.382 seconds
3. Gerber/Griffin/Cioci (ZAF/IRL/I), Ferrari F458 Italia, + 1.238
6. Narac/Bourret/Tandy (F/F/GB), Porsche 911 GT3 RSR, + 1.860

The World Endurance Championship
In the World Endurance Championship, sports prototypes and GT vehicles start in four classes: LMGTE-Pro, LMGTE-Am, LMP1 and LMP2. They all compete together in one race but are classified separately.

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SOURCE:  World Endurance Championship   Porsche AG Media Press Database   https://presse.porsche.de.

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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Latest Photos: Porsche Free Practice World Endurance Championship, rd 1 in Silverstone, Great Britain

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Stuttgart. Latest photos from free practice on the Silverstone Circuit, on which the first round of the World Endurance Championship WEC is contested on Sunday.

SOURCE: Porsche AG Media Database

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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Race debut of the new Porsche 911 RSR, World Endurance Championship, rd 1 in Silverstone, Great Britain

World Endurance Championship, round 1 in Silverstone, Great Britain

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Stuttgart. At the six hour race on the Silverstone Circuit, which signals the start of the 2013 World Endurance Championship (WEC) season on 14th April, the Porsche 911 RSR celebrates its race debut. Running the campaign on the storied 5.981 kilometre circuit in the British Midlands is the Porsche AG Team Manthey works team with Olaf Manthey at the helm.

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

The Porsche drivers

Porsche works drivers Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), Patrick Pilet (France) and Timo Bernhard (Germany) take up the GTE-Pro class in the 911 RSR with starting number 91.

Porsche 911 RSR , Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Porsche 911 RSR , Porsche AG Team Manthey: Joerg Bergmeister, Timo Bernhard, Patrick Pilet

Sharing driving duties in the cockpit of the number 92 vehicle are their factory driver colleagues Marc Lieb (Germany), Richard Lietz (Austria) and Romain Dumas (France).

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Two customer teams tackle the GTE-Am class with last year’s Porsche 911 GT3 RSR: Driving the Proton Competition entry is Christian Ried (Germany) and his Italian teammates Paolo Ruberti and Gianluca Roda, with an all-French line-up of Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret and Jean-Karl Vernay competing for IMSA Performance Matmut.

The Porsche 911 RSR

The Porsche 911 RSR delivers 460 hp and is based on the seventh generation of the iconic 911 sports car.

Timo Bernhard, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Timo Bernhard, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

As the successor to the winning 911 GT3 RSR, with which Porsche customers scored many victories and title wins since 2004, it is characterized by consequent lightweight design and sophisticated aerodynamics.

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey: Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz, Romain Dumas

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Joerg Bergmeister, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

The look of the new 911 RSR is dominated by the flared mudguards and the deep cooling air intakes at the front. The exceptional vehicle styling honours the anniversary “50 years of the 911”.

Timo Bernhard, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

Timo Bernhard, Porsche 911 RSR, Porsche AG Team Manthey

The schedule

The six hour race takes off on Sunday, 14 April, at midday local time (13.00 hrs CET). Eurosport 2 televises the start of the race live at 13.00 hours (30 minutes) and returns to a live broadcast at 15.00 hours (30 minutes). The final hour is aired live from 18.00 hours on Eurosport 1. The race can be viewed live on the internet under http://www.fiawec.com.

Comments before the race

Hartmut Kristen, Head of Porsche Motorsport: “The whole team is ready and raring to tackle the first race with the 911 RSR. Our squad has worked extremely hard over the last months to make our new car competitive right from the start.”

Jörg Bergmeister

Jörg Bergmeister

Joerg Bergmeister (# 91): “I’m looking forward to my premiere in the WEC – in the most beautiful and spectacular 911 ever.”

Patrick Pilet

Patrick Pilet

Patrick Pilet (# 91): “To share the cockpit with such successful Porsche pilots like Joerg and Timo is a great and exciting challenge.”

Timo Bernhard

Timo Bernhard

Timo Bernhard (# 91): “I felt great at the tests in the 911 RSR. We have a good chance to win our class with this car.”

Marc Lieb

Marc Lieb

Marc Lieb (# 92): “The new 911 RSR is a significant step forward. I hope that the good test results can be confirmed at the first race.”

Richard Lietz

Richard Lietz

Richard Lietz (# 92): “We face very strong opposition from the works teams from Ferrari and Aston Martin. In Silverstone we’ll see where we stand.”

Romain Dumas

Romain Dumas

Romain Dumas (# 92): “I’m looking forward to racing the new 911 RSR with Marc and Richard and I’m confident that we’ll make a good start into the season.”

In the World Endurance Championship, sports prototypes and GT vehicles start in four different classes: LMGTE-Pro, LMGTE-Am, LMP1 and LMP2. They all compete together in one race but are classified separately.

SOURCE:   World Endurance Championship Porsche Media Database

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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New Porsche 911 RSR successfully concludes test drives – Season preparations on the finish straight

Test drive Porsche 911 RSR

Test drive Porsche 911 RSR

Press Release

21/02/2013

Test drive Porsche 911 RSR

Stuttgart. The development of the new Porsche 911 RSR based on the current generation 991 model is nearly complete. On the Sebring International Raceway in Florida/USA the GTE race car from Weissach completed another successful test on Thursday.

The successor to the Porsche 911 GT3 RSR will be run exclusively by the Porsche AG Team Manthey works squad at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and in the World Endurance Championship (WEC).The vehicle celebrates its race debut on April 14 at the WEC season-opener in Silverstone. 

M13_0164
Sharing driving duties at Sebring were Porsche works drivers Richard Lietz (Austria) and Patrick Pilet (France). Lietz contests the WEC including Le Mans with Marc Lieb (Germany) at the wheel of the 911 RSR with the starting number 92. Patrick Pilet joins forces with Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) in the number 91 vehicle.

At the first two WEC rounds in Silverstone and Spa-Francorchamps as well as at Le Mans, they receive backup from their factory pilot colleagues Romain Dumas (France/No. 92) and Timo Bernhard (Germany/No.91).

“We are very pleased with how the testing has gone so far,” said Porsche’s Head of Motorsport Hartmut Kristen. “Our goal is to be well prepared for the challenges of the very strong GTE class in the WEC and at Le Mans. The circuit in Sebring is very well suited to put a new vehicle through some demanding trials.

For this reason, a test in Sebring is a very good rehearsal for one of the toughest races of all, the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Until the season kicks off in Silverstone, we will conduct some final tests on other race tracks so that our new 911 RSR is well and truly ready for the World Endurance Championship season.”

 

SOURCE: Porsche AG Media Database

Communication Porsche AG
Motorsport Press

 

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Video: Best Porsche finishes fifth in the fuel gamble at Daytona 24 hour

 

 

Daytona 24 Hours

Daytona 24 Hours

Stuttgart. The sprint to the finish of the Daytona 24 hour race turned into a gripping game of fuel poker in the fiercely contested GT class.

(l.-r.): Nick Tandy, Marco Holzer, Patrick Pilet, Romain Dumas, Patrick Long, Jörg Bergmeister, Michael Christensen, Richard Lietz, Klaus Bachler, Marc Lieb

(l.-r.): Nick Tandy, Marco Holzer, Patrick Pilet, Romain Dumas, Patrick Long, Jörg Bergmeister, Michael Christensen, Richard Lietz, Klaus Bachler, Marc Lieb

In the last laps, the teams put all their eggs in one basket with their strategies, waived an additional time-consuming fuel stop so that they had a winning chance at the prestigious sports car classic in Florida.

Richard Lietz

Richard Lietz

For Porsche works driver Richard Lietz this did not work out: Last year’s winner from Austria, who had held the lead position over long stretches in the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup and was on course for a podium result in the final laps, had to save fuel and was hence unable to utilize the full potential of the car.

(l.-r.): Richard Lietz, Nicolas Armindo, Andy Lally, John Potter

(l.-r.): Richard Lietz, Nicolas Armindo, Andy Lally, John Potter

With his Magnus Racing teammates Nicolas Armindo (France), Andy Lally (USA) and John Potter (USA) he finally finished in fifth – ahead of his works driver colleague Marco Holzer (Germany) who shared driving duties in the Alex Job Racing Porsche 911 GT3 Cup with Jeroen Bleekemolen (Netherlands), Damien Faulkner (Ireland) and Cooper MacNeil (USA).

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, Magnus Racing: Richard Lietz, Nicolas Armindo, Andy Lally, John Potter

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, Magnus Racing: Richard Lietz, Nicolas Armindo, Andy Lally, John Potter

The six best placed of the 34 GT vehicles crossed the finish line inside one lap.

“As title defender we had anticipated a better result than fifth of course, still we can be satisfied with our performance,” said Richard Lietz. “Right up until fifteen minutes before the flag everything was running to plan, unfortunately our strategy didn’t quite work. But we didn’t have a choice.

We did everything we could but it wasn’t quite enough.” He led the field with his number 44 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup over a total of 43 laps – far more than any of his opponents. Marco Holzer said: “It was a tough race for us.

We managed the distance well despite some problems but had to ease off the throttle in the last laps to save fuel. We took the gamble and didn’t want to refuel at the end. Sadly this plan didn’t quite succeed.”

 

Daytona 24 Hours

Daytona 24 Hours

“That was certainly one of the most exciting 24 hour races,” said Hartmut Kristen, Head of Porsche Motorsport.

“Our customer teams were right up there in the fight for victory. Last year we came home with a triple victory, this time others climbed the podium.”

 

The first leader on the Daytona International Speedway was Nick Tandy.

Nick Tandy

Nick Tandy

At his debut race as a Porsche works driver, the Briton from Konrad Motorsport/Orbit snatched the lead from pole position. His perfect start, however, was not a good omen: After about eight laps and many incidents, he had to park his Porsche 911 GT3 Cup trackside with suspension damage.

Michael Christensen

Michael Christensen

This also proved to be a bitter experience for his teammate Michael Christensen, the Porsche junior from Denmark who contested his first ever 24 hour race.

Klaus Bachler

Klaus Bachler

For the second Porsche junior, however, Daytona yielded success: Austria’s Klaus Bachler, who contests the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup this year with Michael Christensen, finished eleventh in the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup fielded by Snow Racing/Wright Motorsports after putting in a commendable performance.

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, Snow Racing/Wright Motorsports: Madison Snow, Melanie Snow, Sascha Maassen Marco Seefried, Klaus Bachler

Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, Snow Racing/Wright Motorsports: Madison Snow, Melanie Snow, Sascha Maassen Marco Seefried, Klaus Bachler

“We had a few problems during the night but all in all everything went well,” he commented. “That was my first 24 hour race and I learned a great deal.”

At the wheel of his Porsche Cayman, the 2009 overall winner from America David Donohue won the GX class with his compatriots Nelson Canache, Shane Lewis and Jim Norman.

With this, he earned Porsche, the most successful manufacturer in the history of the race, the 75th class victory in Daytona.

(l.-r.): Richard Lietz, Klaus Bachler, Nick Tandy, Marco Holzer, Patrick Pilet, Patrick Long, Michael Christensen, Romain Dumas, Marc Lieb, Jörg Bergmeister

(l.-r.): Richard Lietz, Klaus Bachler, Nick Tandy, Marco Holzer, Patrick Pilet, Patrick Long, Michael Christensen, Romain Dumas, Marc Lieb, Jörg Bergmeister

 

Race result
GT class

1. Albuquerque/Jarvis/Mortara/von Moltke (MEX/GB/MEX/USA), Audi R8, 678 laps
2. Bass/Basseng/Rast/Stippler (USA/D/D/D), Audi R8, 678
3. Wilkens/Assentato/Cosmo/Lazzaro (USA/USA/USA/USA), Ferrari 458, 678
4. Balzan/Frezza/Pier Guidi (I/I/I/), Ferrari 458, 678
5. Lietz/Lally/Armindo/Potter (A/USA/F/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 678
6. Holzer/Bleekemolen/Faulkner/MacNeil (D/NL/IRL/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 678
10. Farnbacher/Baldwin/Burtin/Ragginger/Renauer (D/USA/USA/A/D), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 671
11. Bachler/Maassen/Seefried/Snow/Snow (A/D/D/USA/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 668
13. Lieb/Sellers/Davis/Keen (D/USA/USA/USA), Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 663

GX class
1. Donohue/Canache/Lewis/Norman (USA/USA/USA/USA), Porsche Cayman, 635 laps

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SOURCE:  24 Hours at Daytona Porsche AG Media Database   Communication Porsche AG Motorsport Press

 

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