The Dutchman managed to successfully defend his title – a feat previously only achieved by the Austrian Philipp Eng (2014 and 2015). Throughout this interview, ten Voorde reveals, among other things, his personal highlights of the season, why the most difficult phase of his career was also the most important one and how he has changed since his first race in the 2017 Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland. Larry ten Voorde discusses…
... the title in the 2021 Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland:
That was a tough season. I’m absolutely thrilled with my overall victory. Right up until the last part of the decisive race, I focussed totally on my performance, but when I drove through the final corner and saw my team, the emotions kicked in. Nobody has ever managed to win the title in both the Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland and the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup two years in a row. When you consider how many great drivers were on the starting grids in these series, it makes me very proud.
… his personal season highlights:
This definitely includes my first win of the season in the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup at the season-opener in Spa. The home win in Zandvoort is also one of my personal favourites. I managed to overtake Rudy van Buren in one of the two new banked corners. My family was there too. It was a great weekend.
… his competitors:
Ayhancan Güven and Laurin Heinrich were my biggest rivals throughout this season. I have a great deal of respect for them both. Laurin had a strong year in the Porsche Carrera Cup, he’s a smart driver and has a great future awaiting him. Ayhancan has a real fighter’s heart and gives everything he’s got for a top result. He’s definitely one of the strongest competitors I’ve faced in my career so far.
… the new Porsche 911 GT3 Cup:
We all compete in the same car, which is what makes the Carrera Cup so appealing. Still, there are ways to tweak the setup. For example, the air pressure or the position of the rear wing. The challenge is to find the optimal settings for the track in combination with your own driving style. On some weekends it worked great for me, on others it wasn’t quite perfect. It’s a process that spans the whole season.
… the first moments in the new Cup car:
That was at the delivery event in March at the Nürburgring. I had a good feeling straight away. The car has significantly more aerodynamics, which means that you can drive through corners at higher speeds. In my opinion, this is an advantage for newcomers. We also noticed that the lap times of the first ten to fifteen drivers were often very close together. However, overtaking manoeuvres are more of a challenge because the aerodynamics are somewhat less effective in the slipstream, which provides more of a challenge for the driver.
… his progress compared to his debut season in 2017:
I’ve definitely grown up a bit. In my premiere season I had a lot of fire in me, sometimes I was perhaps a little overzealous. However, the situation can’t be compared with nowadays. I had a small budget and sometimes didn’t even know if I would be back in the cockpit for the next race weekend. So, every race could have been my last chance to prove myself and show my talent. I felt that pressure. I would say that today I’ve found a good balance between gutsy and clever driving.
… the most difficult point of his career:
In 2014 and 2015 I couldn’t compete in motorsport due to a tight budget. Nevertheless, I didn’t give up during that time and washed cars on the track in Zandvoort, helped with driver safety training or sold coffee. I just wanted to stay connected to motorsport. In retrospect, it was the most important chapter of my career. During this time, it became clear to me that I definitely wanted to become a racing driver and that I would give everything for it. I came back to motorsport in 2016 through the Porsche Sports Cup Deutschland and became champion there.
… motorsport in the Netherlands:
Formula E champion Nyck de Vries and Formula 1 driver Max Verstappen, currently two of the most successful racing drivers, come from the Netherlands. At the moment, motorsport is enjoying huge popularity in the Netherlands, which of course is largely due to Max Verstappen. The Formula 1 race in Zandvoort with its many spectators was great and showed how passionately Dutch people follow motorsport.
… a Carrera Cup driver he would like to challenge:
Definitely Michael Ammermüller, although we have raced against each other for several seasons in the past. Back then, I was a rookie in the Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland. Michael, on the other hand, was a veteran and I learned a lot from him. He won the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup three times in a row and then took the title in the ADAC GT Masters. I have immense respect for that.
… routine before a race:
For quite some time now, meditation and shadow boxing have been part of my routine before a race. That’s why I had a personal trainer with me this season. I even meditate daily. Sometimes I take a few minutes out of my day to do this, sometimes even half an hour. It helped me a lot to calm down and find a better balance. You could see that on the racetrack, too.
… role models in his childhood:
Back then it was definitely Kimi Raikkonen, today it’s Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton. Both had to fight hard for their success, which I find impressive. I compete with Max Verstappen as a sim racer in Team Redline. Sometimes he’ll give us feedback for better setup configurations for the simulator in the middle of the night. He takes on every challenge. That’s precisely what I like about him.
… the differences between winning a title and defending it:
In my opinion, defending a win is another level. You have to constantly keep your standard high and you’re always the benchmark for everyone else. This season I was pursued in both the Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland and in the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup. It’s a different pressure, but I really enjoyed that role.
… goals for the future:
I want to win more titles, preferably in endurance races. Winning the 24-hour races in Le Mans, Dubai or Daytona would be a dream. In general, motorsport in the USA appeals to me. In early October I was a coach at the Virginia International Raceway near Danville. The people there are incredibly emotionally engaged when it comes to motorsport, I find that fascinating.