The name Lars Kern isn’t well known in Australia. But this behind-the-scenes racer has done more laps in a Porsche than any other driver he’ll line-up against in the 2017 Porsche Carrera Cup Australia championship.
As a Porsche test and development driver, the German has been responsible for the development of Porsche models such as the Boxster, Panamera, 911 GT3 and even the race-bred 911 RSR.
With experience in rally, sports car and touring car racing, Kern’s reputation derives from his pace in road-going Porsche models – he holds the record for the first sub-eight minute lap of the Nürburgring Nordschleife circuit (7m59.74s) in a production SUV, achieved in a Cayenne Turbo S, and the fastest lap of the ‘Green Hell’ (7m38s) in a production sedan when at the wheel of a Panamera Turbo.
Kern started racing again last year, which included a stint in Nürburgring’s VLN Endurance Championship, and will now line-up in Carrera Cup alongside Marc Cini in the multiple title winning team, Porsche Centre Melbourne.
“Racing in Australia is a dream for me. I have followed the growth of sports car and one-make racing in Australia for many years so it’s great to be able to now be part of it. Having Porsche one-make racing on street circuits is always spectacular and provides great racing. From what I’ve seen so far, the series races at some cool locations with big, enthusiastic crowds,” said Kern.
“For the last five years I’ve focussed on my job as a Test and Development Driver at Porsche, but I’m looking forward to racing more this season. Ever since we started talks about racing in Australia, I’ve started watching a lot of Carrera Cup races, mainly to learn the tracks as I’ve never seen them in real life.
“I’m a real greenhorn when it comes to racing in Australia, but I’m comfortable with that. I just look forward to getting there and starting the season in Adelaide.”
Porsche Centre Melbourne’s General Manager, Piero Pellegrini, is excited to have an ambassador so strongly linked with the Porsche brand as the dealership continues to build upon its successful motor racing heritage.
“I’m thrilled to have Lars join Marc as part of our two-car team in the 2017 Porsche Carrera Cup Australia championship,” said Pellegrini.
“Motor racing has always been at the heart of Porsche Centre Melbourne and we have enjoyed vast success across several forms of the sports, including multiple Carrera Cup titles and Targa rally victories.
“Marc is a tremendous part of our motorsport programme and has been has many seasons, and now Lars will bring a new international element, with a distinctive Porsche flavour, to our dealership.”
The 2017 Porsche Carrera Cup Australia championship will get underway at the season opening Clipsal 500 in Adelaide on March 02-05, 2017.