Porsche Podiums. 911 RSR Earns Second-Place for Works Team, Third-Place for Customer Effort in Austin.

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Porsche Podiums. 911 RSR Earns Second-Place for Works Team, Third-Place for Customer Effort in Austin.

After a fiercely-contested Lone Star Le Mans for the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) in Austin, Texas, Porsche celebrated its fourth podium result of the season. The reigning world champions Kévin Estre (France) and Michael Christensen (Denmark) concluded the six-hour race at the Circuit of the Americas (COTA) in second-place in the LMGTE-Pro class. At the wheel of the Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR race car, which is based on the high-performance 911 GT3 RS road-legal sports car, the pair were just 4.210-seconds from claiming victory after 173 laps without a single caution period. Their teammates Gianmaria Bruni (Italy) and Richard Lietz (Austria), however, were less fortunate. A technical problem dropped the No. 91 Porsche 911 RSR three places down the field, with the pair ultimately taking the flag in seventh-place in class. In the season-long manufacturers’ classification, Porsche retains second-place. In the LMGTE-Am class, Matteo Cairoli (Italy), Egidio Perfetti (Norway) and Germany’s Laurents Hörr clinched third-place in the 2017-spec Porsche 911 RSR racer fielded by Team Project 1.

Alexander Stehlig (Head of Operations FIA WEC), 2020, PCNA
Alexander Stehlig, Head of Operations FIA WEC

Alexander Stehlig, Head of Operations FIA WEC.
“I have mixed feelings about this round. The number 92 car had a very good race, which resulted in a commendable second-place. Unfortunately, we experienced an electrical problem with our number 91 Porsche 911 RSR. The car stood at the side of the track and we had to change the battery. That cost us several positions and consequently many championship points.”

Michael Christensen, Driver, No. 92 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR.
“We got the best out of the car. The team did a flawless job and we drove a steady race. I hope we’ll be at the top of the podium again next time.”

Kévin Estre, Driver, No. 92 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR.
“In terms of tire choice, we chose a different strategy than most of our competitors today. We raced on used slicks for most of the time while our rivals ran new tires and vice versa. That’s why we were sometimes ahead and sometimes behind. But we didn’t let that faze us and we simply focused on the job at hand. Unfortunately, it wasn’t quite enough to win, and we were only four seconds off, but second-place yields us important points for the championship.”

Porsche 911 RSR, Team Project 1 (57), Jeroen Bleekemolen (NL), Felipe Fraga (BR), Ben Keating (USA), Austin, Texas, 2020, PCNA

Gianmaria Bruni, Driver, No. 91 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR.
“Unfortunately, technology threw a spanner in the works today. It’s a real shame, especially so close to the end of the race. Still, the new 911 RSR is in its maiden season. We had the speed and the strategy to reach the podium today. We’ll do our utmost to be up the front again at the next race.”

Richard Lietz, Driver, No. 91 Porsche GT Team Porsche 911 RSR.
“The car ran well right from the start. Our rivals were able to pull clear a little on the straights, but we caught up on the narrow, technically demanding passages. The balance of our 911 RSR was excellent. The tires still looked great after a double stint, and our strategy was perfect. Unfortunately, we were hampered by the electrics. But Kevin and Michael’s good result demonstrate that the car has a lot of potential.”

Egidio Perfetti, Driver, No. 56 Team Project 1 Porsche 911 RSR.
“Basically, the race went really well. We definitely could have implemented a different strategy to finish even further up the field, but third-place with our new driver line-up is very good and I’m happy with it.”

Rookie Test. Porsche Sending Makowiecki and Preining to Formula E Rookie Test in Marrakesh.

Porsche GT Team driver Frédéric Makowiecki (France) and Porsche Young Professional Thomas Preining (Austria) will be on track in Morocco for the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team during the official ABB FIA Formula E Championship rookie test. The day after the Marrakesh E-Prix (March 1), the two Porsche drivers will take over the cockpits of Formula E regular works drivers Neel Jani (Switzerland) and André Lotterer (Germany). This will give Makowiecki and Preining the chance to gain experience behind the wheel of the Porsche 99X Electric and provide the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team with more insights during the team’s maiden season.

Makowiecki has been a Porsche factory driver since 2014 and has achieved numerous successes in that time including winning the Nürburgring 24 Hours in 2018. The Frenchman also competes in the 2020 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship for the Porsche GT Team driving the new Porsche 911 RSR. He is a two-time defending race winner of the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring (2018, 2019) with the IMSA works team. In 2018, he had his first experience behind the wheel of an all-electric race car when he participated in the official ABB FIA Formula E Championship’s rookie test for the first time – then for the DS Techeetah program.

“That's why I'm very excited to see how the Porsche 99X Electric feels. I'm definitely looking forward to my first assignment."

Preining has been a fixture with Porsche Motorsport since 2017 and has been part of the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E team as a test and development driver since September 2019. He returns for a second year as a Porsche Young Professional in 2020. In 2019, he piloted a Porsche 911 RSR race car for customer team Gulf Racing in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) in the LMGTE-AM class. The Austrian and his teammates finished in fourth-place at the 6 Hours of Fuji, the 1000 Miles of Sebring and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. He also competed in the ADAC GT Masters with Herbert Motorsport. In 2020, Preining is competing in the Intercontinental GT Challenge and the Blancpain Endurance Series. In the FIA WEC, he supports the Dempsey Proton Racing customer team.

Frédéric Makowiecki, Porsche Factory Driver / Formula E Test and Development.
“I'm really looking forward to taking part in the rookie test for the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E team in Marrakech. I was already able to gain initial experience in the simulator. Now it's time to put what I've learned into performance on the track. Compared to the GT race cars that I usually drive on the track; it will certainly be a change. Even though I already took part in the rookie test in Marrakech in 2018, I feel like a newcomer. The vehicles have developed enormously since then. That's why I'm very excited to see how the Porsche 99X Electric feels. I'm definitely looking forward to my first assignment."

Thomas Preining, Driver, Porsche Young Professional / Formula E Test and Development.
“After spending a few hours in the racing simulator, I can't wait to finally get out on the track with the Porsche 99X Electric. It is very exciting for me to be part of the Porsche Formula E project as a test and development driver. At the season opener in Diriyah, I was there to internalize the processes and procedures on the race track. I hope that I can provide the team in Marrakech with further important insights.”

Doing it Wright. Porsche Customer Team Celebrates Two Decades in Sport.

As Wright Motorsports rings in a new year, the Porsche customer racing team is proud to celebrate 20 years of professional sports car racing. From day one, founder John Wright built the entire concept of Wright Motorsports around the Porsche brand. Wright began his motorsport career as a Porsche mechanic, which opened up a world of opportunity and experience.

By the late 1990s, Wright landed the roles of engineer and crew chief at Schumacher Racing. As the new decade hit, he stepped out on his own to start Wright Tuning Inc. and began his own professional racing program. Since then, Wright has partnered with some of the most well-known teams in sports car racing, including Doran Racing, TruSpeed Motorsports, Konrad Motorsports, Flying Lizard Motorsports, Brumos Racing, JDX Racing and Schuitemaker Motorsports.

Over the last 20 years, the team has become a staple on the North American sports car racing scene, competing in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, the SRO GT World Challenge America and the IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama. In that time, Wright Motorsports-prepared Porsche race cars have won in the GTD class of the WeatherTech series at Road America – 2018, Patrick Long (Manhattan Beach, California) and Christina Nielsen (Denmark) – and the SRO World Challenge with Long earning the 2018 GT Driver and Team Championships. The Ohio-based team is also among the bedrock, multi-car efforts of the IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA earning numerous race wins, championships and launching multiple driving careers into the professional ranks.

John Wright, Principal, Wright Motorsports.
“When I started, if you were a good dealership mechanic, you excelled on the racing side because you knew the systems, the wiring and everything else about the cars. That’s how closely designed the race cars are to the road cars.”

“Over the years, we have on occasion run with other manufacturers any time a business opportunity came into the shop. But I always relate my experiences back to what kind of support system I have with Porsche. No one else has really added up to what Porsche offers. Porsche is always the core.”

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