Porsche GT Team Targets Multiple IMSA Titles

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DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – As the Porsche GT Team looks to nail down no under four titles in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season finale on Oct. 12, Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta seems to give the ideal setting. 

The notable circuit in Braselton, Ga., where the Motul Petit Le Mans happens, is a suburb of Atlanta, the home to Porsche Cars North America. Further, the two Porsche sections competing for the four titles in the GT Le Mans class will convey an extraordinary return attire highlighting Atlanta-put together Coca-Cola with respect to the vehicles. What's more, in a clashing turn, it will be the last race for the flow variant of those Porsche 911 RSRs before a refreshed model makes a big appearance next season in WeatherTech Championship rivalry. 

Co-drivers Earl Bamber and Laurens Vanthoor in the No. 912 Porsche hold a noteworthy lead over partners Patrick Pilet and Nick Tandy in the No. 911 Porsche. The German marque additionally has a 19-point edge over Ford in the producer pursue. All the Porsches need do is leave the beginning matrix for the 10-hour race to verify the GTLM driver, group and maker titles. 

Furthermore, Pilet and Tandy gloat a six-point edge over Bamber and Vanthoor and No. 67 Chip Ganassi Racing Ford GT drivers Richard Westbrook and Ryan Briscoe in Michelin Endurance Cup rivalry, which grants focuses at assigned points in every one of the four continuance occasions. So there's in excess of a sensible possibility that the Porsche 911 RSRs that developed on the IMSA scene in 2017 could exit with a great hammer of titles in 2019. 

"After Petit Le Mans, the vehicle will resign, so it's likewise some feeling since it will be the last race of the RSR 2017," says Pascal Zurlinden, Porsche chief of plant motorsport. "We will proceed onward to the new RSR 2019 for Daytona (in January). So there is some feeling and simultaneously, an extremely effective vehicle." 

The No. 911 completed 6th in the GTLM standings in 2017 and the No. 912 was fifth a year later. Be that as it may, the force during the current year's overwhelming exhibition by the two vehicles – which incorporates three successes for every section and an aggregate of three races where both Porsches completed on the platform – was thrown in a year ago's season finale won by Pilet, Tandy and their perseverance dashing partner, Frederic Makowiecki, in the No. 911 Porsche. 

"At Petit Le Mans a year ago, it resembled a switch (went on)," Zurlinden says. "We won the race and since that time I think the group is making an ideal showing. We never have the best vehicle on track, the snappiest one, however all as a result of the procedures, parting the title between autos, toward the end it's practically immaculate yet near (it). That is the thing that makes every one of these successes and all the platform attainable." 

The current Porsche 911 RSR was a takeoff from past ages with its mid-motor plan. Zurlinden concedes there were getting teeth issues at the beginning – both in WeatherTech Championship and FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) rivalry. 

"Thinking back to the most recent three years, I think the primary year was somewhat troublesome year," Zurlinden says. "Not all things be straightforwardly set up and we didn't comprehend also the vehicle and the tires. Be that as it may, taking a gander at the most recent two years, in IMSA and outside in WEC, I believe was extremely fruitful. This year, the affirmation was the second win in Sebring (the No. 911 with Pilet, Tandy and Makowiecki in the driver's seat). It was an affirmation that we can do it with this vehicle." 

For sure, that triumph in the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Presented by Advance Auto Parts in March touched off a five-race win streak for the Porsches to vault them on the GTLM standings. Makowiecki returns as the third driver in the No. 911 at Michelin Raceway, with Mathieu Jaminet collaborating with Bamber and Vanthoor in the No. 912. 

Zurlinden says expectation is high, especially since the well known Coca-Cola uniforms are the most recent that Porsche will run this season to help recognize IMSA's 50th Anniversary Celebration. Consolidating that with it being the last race for the current Porsche RSR and last occasion for Scott Atherton as IMSA president, Zurlinden indicates there might be tears of satisfaction – and some trouble – when the checkered banner waves. 

"Toward the end, there will be some feeling since it will be the last race of the year for IMSA, the last race for Scott in his dynamic position, the last race for our RSR Porsches, so a ton of feeling," Zurlinden says. "Whatever the (result of the) races will be, a great deal of feeling." 

Porsche has just gathered one IMSA crown before on-track activity begins one week from now at Michelin Raceway. Gifted new kid on the block Zacharie Robichon wrapped up the WeatherTech Sprint Cup title in GT Daytona on Sept. 15 at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca. The Sprint Cup, which appeared this season, is select to the GTD class and comprised of seven non-continuance occasions on the schedule in 2019. 

By completing fourth at WeatherTech Raceway in the No. 9 Pfaff Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R, Robichon took the title. 

"This was an extremely significant achievement for Porsche motorsports and furthermore for Pfaff," Zurlinden says. "Not just for Pfaff it was the principal season in IMSA, it was additionally for Porsche Motorsport the primary season for our new GT3 Gen-2. Winning one title in the huge battle with every one of the producers in GTD in the principal year of the vehicle and first year of the group, with a new kid on the block, it's the ideal circumstance for us."

Source speedsport.com
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