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Porsche Penske Motorsport again fields three Porsche 963 at Le Mans

Porsche 963, Porsche Penske Motorsport, Le Mans, 2023, Porsche AG
Porsche 963, Porsche Penske Motorsport, Le Mans, 2023, Porsche AG

Porsche Penske Motorsport will once again field three Porsche 963 race cars at the Circuit des 24 Heures du Mans in the 2024 season. The organiser, ACO, confirmed that the Porsche works team will campaign a third car at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

French works driver Mathieu Jaminet will helm the No. 4 car, with the other drivers announced at a later date. In addition to the three hybrid prototypes from Porsche Penske Motorsport, the customer teams Hertz Team Jota and Proton Competition will be competing in the top Hypercar class with three more 963 on 15/16 June. At least two Porsche 911 GT3 R will contest the LMGT3 category.

Extraordinary sporting event

In its 101st year, the 24 Hours of Le Mans is developing into an extraordinary sporting event with record-breaking spectator numbers. On the third weekend of June, Porsche has set its sights on clinching its 20th overall victory in the world’s biggest endurance race. To maximise its chances in the fierce competition between numerous manufacturers in the top Hypercar class, the Porsche Penske Motorsport works team applied early for the opportunity to enter a third Porsche 963. This Monday (19 February), the Le Mans organiser Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO) accepted the application. The additional hybrid prototype from Weissach will take on the competition with the starting number 4. Works driver Mathieu Jaminet from France has been confirmed as the first driver.

“We’d like to take this opportunity to thank the organiser, the ACO, for once again granting us the opportunity to enter a third car,” comments Thomas Laudenbach, Vice President Porsche Motorsport. “The 24 Hours of Le Mans will be a stunning smorgasbord of spectacular cars from a total of 14 manufacturers in the Hypercar and LMGT3 classes. We’re expecting a close and exciting battle at the front. So, it’s all the more important that we maximise the chances of our 20th overall victory by entering a third Porsche 963.”

“The history of the 24 Hours of Le Mans has shown time and again how important an extra iron in the fire can be. Last year, it was our third car that managed to lead the pack in the race,” explains Urs Kuratle, Director Factory Motorsport LMDh. “After our victory at the 24 Hours of Daytona last month, our goal is very clear: we want to be at the top of the podium at the classic in Le Mans.”

“In the second year of racing with the Porsche 963, having the privilege of racing an additional entry allows our team to apply all hard-learned lessons from 2023 and field three entries that we feel are capable of winning this historic race,” comments Jonathan Diuguid, Managing Director of Porsche Penske Motorsport. “Operationally, we will prepare and run the additional car in a very similar way to last year with support from our IMSA team. That’s the beauty of Porsche Penske Motorsport: we can use our global programme to tap into resources for staff and equipment for the biggest races of the year.”

“I’m thrilled to be driving the Porsche 963 at Le Mans again this year,” says Mathieu Jaminet, looking ahead to his third start in the endurance classic in his home country. “For a Frenchman, it’s a great privilege to be able to fight for overall victory with record-winner Porsche at Le Mans. Last year, we didn’t get the result that we had hoped for. Since then, however, we’ve made significant progress. That’s why I’m feeling so confident as I head to this major event in June.”

New LMGT3 class

It has not yet been decided who will share driving duties with Jaminet in the No. 4 cockpit. Porsche Penske Motorsport will announce the complete line-up at a later date. As permanent entries in the FIA WEC, the two Porsche 911 GT3 R fielded by Manthey EMA and Manthey Pure Rxcing are automatically eligible to compete in the new LMGT3 class at Le Mans. The Pure Rxcing team has also earned the option of two further grid positions thanks to its successes in the GT World Challenge and the Asian Le Mans Series.

The 24 Hours of Le Mans on 15/16 June 2024 is the fourth round of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) season. One week beforehand, on 9 June, the so-called pre-test is scheduled. This one-day event offers the only opportunity to align the race car, team and drivers with the unique features of the 13.626-kilometre Circuit des 24 Heures in Le Mans. The legendary circuit is a combination of a permanent racetrack and public roads, which are closed off for the event.

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