Porsche again elects to enter four GTE Pro cars at Le Mans in 2019
Porsche will again field four factory cars at the Le Mans 24 Hours in the defence of its GTE Pro crown at the 2018/19 World Endurance Championship finale.
The US CORE Autosport squad, which represents the German manufacturer in the IMSA SportsCar Championship in North America, will make its second Le Mans appearance alongside the Manthey-run WEC squad at the French endurance race on June 15/16 next year.
Porsche expanded its attack on the GTE Pro class at Le Mans last year as part of an increased commitment to GT racing after the culmination of its LMP1 programme at the end of 2017.
CORE regulars Nick Tandy, Earl Bamber and Patrick Pilet will again team up in one of the US squad’s pair of cars, which will be entered under the Porsche GT Team banner.
German Sven Muller, who made his Le Mans debut last year, will share the team’s other Porsche 911 RSR with two race rookies – Mathieu Jaminet and Dennis Olsen.
The two Porsche ‘young professionals’ replace outright Le Mans winners Timo Bernhard and Romain Dumas.
The WEC Porsche GT Team will field an unchanged driver line-up across its pair of 911 RSRs.
Kevin Estre, Michael Christensen and Laurens Vanthoor will attempt to follow up on their 2018 victory, while Gianmaria Bruni, Richard Lietz and Frederic Makowiecki will again race the second Manthey car.
Porsche will contest the next two WEC superseason rounds at Sebring and Spa with its regular Bruni/Lietz and Estre/Christensen line-ups as scheduled.
CORE will go into the 2019 IMSA season, starting next month at the Daytona 24 Hours, with an unchanged full-season line-up.
Tandy and Pilet will share one car, with Makowiecki again joining them for the Daytona, Sebring and Petit Le Mans events.
Vanthoor and Bamber maintain their partnership, but this year will be joined by Jaminet for the long-distance races that make up three quarters of the renamed Michelin Endurance Cup.
The move follows Jaminet’s appearance alongside Vanthoor and Bamber at the Petit Le Mans IMSA round at Road Atlanta in place of Bruni, who was racing for the WEC squad at Fuji on the same weekend.
All the drivers on Porsche’s factory roster have been retained for 2019. This includes the six 2017 members of its ultra-successful LMP1 squad.
The one addition to the factory squad for 2019 is New Zealander Jaxon Evans, who is joining Porsche’s junior programme.
Evans, this year’s Porsche Carrera Cup Australia champion, claimed a factory contract after a shootout involving 10 other drivers from the manufacturer’s one-make series.
There is now a total of 24 drivers under contract at Porsche.
via All news – Autosport https://www.autosport.com
December 8, 2018 at 08:19PM