After a perfect opening round to the Intercontinental GT Challenge season, Porsche aims to extend its championship lead at round two of the year in Laguna Seca, USA. At the Bathurst 12 Hour on the spectacular Mount Panorama racetrack, Australian ace Matt Campbell clinched a memorable victory alongside fellow Porsche Young Professional Dennis Olsen (Norway) and Porsche Works driver Dirk Werner (Germany).
Notching up the first win for Porsche at Bathurst, the trio not only gave a perfect maiden performance on the world stage with the customer team Earl Bamber Motorsport, but also a fitting farewell to the 2018-spec Porsche 911 GT3 R. After celebrating its race debut at Daytona (USA) in January, the new version of the over 500 hp GT3 vehicle will be fielded at the eight-hour race in Laguna Seca.
The U.S. Porsche customer squads Park Place Motorsports and Wright Motorsports each run a Porsche 911 GT3 R in the race on 30 March, with Campbell, Olsen and Werner to compete with the Wright Motorsports squad.
Laguna Seca Raceway is famous for its legendary Corkscrew corner. In the tight passage on top of the hill, spectacular and memorable manoeuvres have been witnessed here in the past. The 3.601 kilometre racetrack features eleven corners. Per lap, competitors face an elevation change of 55 metres. Round two of the Intercontinental GT Challenge season runs over eight hours. Several highlights are included on the event schedule: In contrast to the season-opening round at Bathurst, all pilots allocated to each car must post a fast lap time in qualifying. Competitors have only one official free practice prior to the qualifying session.
The Porsche teams and drivers
Joining forces in the No. 912 vehicle run by Wright Motorsports are the Bathurst winners Dirk Werner, Matt Campbell and Dennis Olsen. Park Place Motorsports will also field a new Porsche 911 GT3 R. Sharing the cockpit of the No. 911 car are works drivers Romain Dumas (France) and Sven Müller (Germany) with Porsche Young Professional Mathieu Jaminet (France).
The Porsche 911 GT3 R
The Porsche 911 GT3 R was newly developed for the 2019 season. Improvements in the areas of aerodynamics, kinematics, efficiency and driveability were systematically implemented from the insights garnered from the many race outings of its predecessor. The six-cylinder engine in the rear of the GT3 customer racer produces over 368 kW (500 hp). The successful predecessor has notched up victories in numerous international racing series, for example in the IMSA SportsCar Championship, the World Challenge, the ADAC GT Masters, at the Nürburgring 24-hour race and the Bathurst 12 Hour.
The schedule & live streaming
The eight-hour race at Laguna Seca takes off on Saturday 30 March at 8.30am (2.00am Sunday 31 March AEDT). The race can be watched live in Australia on live stream at https://www.intercontinentalgtchallenge.com/live
Comments before the race
Matt Campbell (Porsche 911 GT3 R #912): “I can’t wait to go racing in California. I already know the Wright Motorsports team and I really like the circuit. I’m ready and raring to race. I’m excited to see how the new Porsche 911 GT3 R does at its first IGTC outing. After our Bathurst success and the perfect farewell to the predecessor model, it would be absolutely ideal if we could continue this performance seamlessly with the new car.”
Sebastian Golz (Project Manager Porsche 911 GT3 R): “We’re delighted to contest the second round of the season with our experienced American customer teams. Park Place Motorsports and Wright Motorsports are very familiar with the quirks of the Laguna Seca racetrack. Entering the famous Corkscrew, our drivers will be able to brake very late with the two Porsche 911 GT3 R vehicles. If you’ve ever looked at onboard footage of this passage, you’ll know just how spectacular it’ll be. With our new GT3 race car, we want to continue where we left off in Bathurst.”