IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, 11th and final round in Braselton/USA
At Petit Le Mans contested on the legendary Road Atlanta racetrack on 7 October, the Porsche GT Team will fight for the first title for the new 911 RSR: Heading to the final round of the North American Endurance Cup – a four-race competition encompassing the long-distance classics of Petit Le Mans, Daytona, Sebring and Watkins Glen – Porsche is leading both the drivers’ and teams’ classification. Performance and reliability are the key factors in this competition, which incorporates the most important and toughest races of the season IMSA SportsCar Championship season. The Porsche GT Team fields two Porsche 911 RSR in the hotly contested GTLM class at the ten-hour race on the tradition-steeped 4.087-kilometre Road Atlanta circuit at Braselton in the US state of Georgia. In the GTD class, four Porsche customer teams campaign the 911 GT3 R.
Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta was contested for the first time in 1998 and is one of the greatest sports car races in the United States. As the most successful manufacturer in the history of this race, Porsche has so far celebrated 20 class victories – 18 with the 911, and two with the RS Spyder. The highlight, however, was when Nick Tandy, Patrick Pilet and Richard Lietz scored the first overall victory with the 911 RSR. This also represents the first overall victory for a GT vehicle at this race. This year marks the 20th running of the long-distance event. The most successful Porsche pilot at Petit Le Mans is Jörg Bergmeister with five victories.
The Porsche drivers
The Porsche GT Team has enlisted two outright Le Mans winners from the Porsche factory squad to help at the decisive race for the North American Endurance Cup: Nick Tandy (Great Britain) joins forces with Patrick Pilet (France) and Dirk Werner (Germany) in the cockpit of the 911 RSR with the starting number 911. Pilet and Werner clinched the first victory for the new 911 RSR at Lime Rock. Earl Bamber (New Zealand) shares driving duties with Laurens Vanthoor (Belgium) and Gianmaria Bruni (Italy) in the #911 Porsche 911 RSR. Four customer squads contest the season finale with the 911 GT3 R: Park Place Motorsports with Jörg Bergmeister (Germany), Alegra Motorsports with Michael Christensen (Denmark), WeatherTech Racing with Patrick Long (USA) as well as CORE autosport. A total of nine Porsche works drivers will compete at Petit Le Mans.
The Porsche vehicles
The Porsche 911 RSR, which celebrated its maiden victory at Lime Rock on 22 July, is a completely new development based on the high-performance 911 GT3 RS sports car: the suspension, body structure, aerodynamic concept, engine and transmission have all been designed by Porsche Motorsport in Weissach from scratch for this season. Depending on the size of the restrictor, the motor, which is now positioned in front of the rear axle, puts out around 375 kW (510 hp). The 911 GT3 R, mounted with the new ultra-modern, four-litre, flat-six engine with direct fuel injection, was designed by Porsche for worldwide GT3 series on the basis of the 911 GT3 RS production sports car. This season, the 368+kW (500 hp) customer sport racer celebrated victories at Daytona and Lime Rock.
The 10-hour Petit Le Mans race takes off on Saturday, 7 October, at 11.10 hrs local time (17.10 hrs CEST). Outside the USA, the race is broadcast live on www.imsa.com.