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Mark Webber wins at the Nürburgring again!

Mark Webber maiden wins at the Nurburgring

Mark Webber must love the Nürburgring. Back in 2009 he cracked his maiden Formula 1 victory in the Eifel mountains and early this morning he, along with his Porsche teammates, won the 6 Hours of Nürburgring. It was Mark’s first WEC race win.

It was a huge day for Porsche too, who dominated with 1–2 victories in both the LMP1 and GTE Pro categories.

Full results available HERE.

Porsche WEC

Porsche extends LMP1 program until 2018

2015 24 Hours of Le Mans

Success breeds success and Porsche is hoping to live that mantra after extending its LMP1 program until at least the end of the 2018 season.

The news follows the company’s 17th Le Mans victory in June and ahead of this weekend 6 Hours of Nürburgring.

“Motorsport is an important part of Porsche’s brand identity—but not an end in itself,” said Matthias Müller, Chairman of the Executive Board of Porsche AG. “Racing has got to help the technology of future road going sports cars. It was the revolutionary efficiency regulations that convinced us to return to top-level motorsport for the 2014 season.

“That we have managed to take the crown jewels of endurance racing in only our second year, with a one-two result in Le Mans in 2015 with our highly innovative and complex 919, is an outstanding testimony to the people in the Weissach research and development centre.

“The competition bears fruits and we see further potential for future synergy between the racing and road car programs. This is why we have extended the program.”

Porsche WEC

2015 LM24: Porsche claims win number 17

2015 24 Hours of Le Mans

If Porsche didn’t have such a proud history at Le Mans achieving a one-two result in its second year would be difficult to believe. But Porsche went about the business of returning to the LMP1 category with enormous respect for its competition and seeing Porsche dominate and indeed tame the Circuit de la Sarthe for 24 hours is what we’ve been trained to expect.

The victory is Porsche’s 17th Le Mans victory. Seventeen!

It’s true, in a perfect world, and keeping an eye on the World Endurance Championship title, Porsche might have preferred its #17 or #18 car to win the race. However, there can be no denying the win to the #19 car which won on merit and with blinding pace during the night session.

Earl Bamber, Nico Hulkenberg and Nick Tandy are an unlikely grouping, but they are now Le Mans winners. They will share a bond for life and nobody can ever take that away from them. Well done lads, well done!

Wolfgang Hatz, the Porsche R&D boss put it succinctly, while reminding us of the resources Porsche has thrown at its LMP1 return: “A one-two finish in what is only our second year is an amazing reward for the guts of our engineers regarding the 919 Hybrid’s concept, and the relentless efforts of our 230 team members.”

Porsche 919 Hybrid final placings

1st (395 laps) #19 – Bamber (NZ), Hulkenberg (GER), Tandy (GB)
2nd (-1 lap) #17 – Bernhard (GER), Hartley (NZ), Webber (AUS)
5th (-4 laps) #18 – Dumas (GER), Jani (SUI), Lieb (GER)

Porsche WEC

Porsche wins 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans

2015 24 Hours of Le Mans

The #19 Porsche 919 Hybrid (Bamber/Hulkenberg/Tandy) has won the 24 Hours of Le Mans and delivered Porsche its 17th win in the endurance epic.

The winning car led for more than half of the race and completed 395 laps (two off equalling the distance record) and finished one lap ahead of the #17 Porsche 919 (Bernhard/Hartley/Webber).

The final podium step in LMP1 was taken by the defending winners in the #7 Audi R18 e-tron quattro (Fässler/Lotterer/Tréluyer).

LMP2 was won by the #47 Oreca 05 Nissan (358 laps).

GTE Pro was won by the #64 Chevrolet Corvette C7R (337 laps).

GTE Am was won by the #72 Ferrari 458 Italia (332 laps).

A full listing of final placings can be found HERE.

Audi Nissan Porsche Toyota WEC

2015 LM24: LMP1 gallery first 12 hours

2015 24 Hours of Le Mans

The 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans is now into its second 12 hours and the #19 Porsche 919 Hybrid enjoys a reasonably comfortable lead (live timing).

Keeping the lead Porsche honest is a pair of Audi R18s, with the #17 Porsche 919 fighting to stay on the lead lap.

In the early stages of the race the #17 919 held the lead before dicing with the #7 R18. The red liveried Porsche suffered a minor setback after Mark Webber was given a one minute stop-go penalty for overtaking during a yellow flag.

Porsche also enjoyed seeing the #18 919 on the lead or fighting very hard for it, but it lost time after going off track at the Mulsanne Corner and is now 1–2 laps behind the leader, although still showing very strong overall pace.

The #9 Audi R18 has led this race as well and has the honour of setting a new outright lap record when Filipe Albuquerque lapped La Sarthe in 3:17.647. And thereby finally beating the old record set way back in 1971 by the Porsche 917 LH. Remember, too, that 1971 record was before the Mulsanne Straight had its two chicanes to help slow the cars down.

Going into the final 12 hours then, the first six cars remain a constantly revolving combination of Porsche 919s and Audi R18s. It will take a miracle for anyone other than Porsche or Audi to win this race; the closest Toyota is four laps off the pace.

Of course, we’d love to see the Mark Webber #17 car take the win, but the lads have some work to do after Mark’s mistake late in his first stint.


Want to buy your own Porsche 919 replica?

Porsche 919 life size replica

Up for sale on eBay at the moment is this life size Porsche 919 replica, which is being offered up for charity by Porsche Asia Pacific.

It’s a rolling chassis only with no drivetrain, otherwise known as a ‘buck’. And right now you’ll need over fifty thousand bucks (US$) to get your name at the top of the buyer’s list.

Here’s some of the blurb from the eBay listing:

The 919 Hybrid. This is the car for Porsche’s return to top-class motor sports at the FIA World Endurance Championship. To be clear, bidders here are not bidding on an actual car, it is a rolling chassis without a drivetrain. In the industry, it is often referred to as a “buck”.

The exclusive limited edition 919 Hybrid 1:1 model car is a full-sized replica of the Porsche 919 Hybrid and is known to be the only 1 out of 13 replicas in the world to be privately owned. Very rarely are these rolling chassis models allowed to leave the factory yet alone be available for sale. The model car also includes the original signatures of the six Porsche 919 Hybrid drivers that participated at Le Mans 2014 and the WEC 2014 — Timo Bernhard, Brendon Hartley, Mark Webber, Romain Dumas, Neel Jani and Marc Lieb. This is a unique opportunity for a collector, Porsche enthusiast, museum or other public place to obtain this piece.

Delivery and inclusive flights and accommodation for the winning bidder is only available to select group of countries in south east Asia, so if you want to win this exclusive offering you’ll have to factor delivery fees to Australia, or wherever you are.

[Thanks to Tiaan for the tip]

Porsche WEC

2015 LM24: Porsche claims pole position

No18 Porsche 919 Hybrid, pole position, 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans

The #18 Porsche 919 Hybrid will start the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans from pole position. Yesterday’s time from first qualifying of 3:16.887 was enough for the crew of Dumas/Jani/Lieb and could not be bettered in the next two sessions.

It’s a clean sweep for Porsche, too, as all three 919s will start from the first three positions. Mark Webber’s #17 919 will start from P2, also unable to better its time from yesterday, while the #19 919 did improve its time slightly, but remains in P3.

Following the Porsches are the three Audi R18 e-tron quattros, who stayed ahead of the two Toyota TS040 hybrids. The Nissan GT-R LM Nismos were able to improve somewhat and will start from positions P12, P13 and P15.

A table showing all classes and all 56 grid positions can be seen after the break.

Porsche WEC

2015 LM24: Porsche dominates qualifying 1

Porsche 919 Hybrid

After qualifying 1 at the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans Porsche has claimed a new qualifying record for the current circuit configuration. That’s thanks to Neel Jani in the #18 919 Hybrid who topped the timesheets with a 3:16.887 lap.

Second fastest was the #17 919 which lapped the 13.629km circuit in 3:17.767, while the #19 919 made it a Porsche clean sweep with a best time of 3:19.297.

There are two further qualifying sessions left for Thursday, but with wet weather expected these times may stand. Both the #17 and #18 cars went comfortably under the old qualifying record of 3:18.513, which was set by Peugeot on way to pole position in the 2008 race.

Behind the Porsches were the three Audi R18 e-tron quattros, with the two Toyota TS040s further behind. The best the Nissan GT-R LM Nismos could do on the overall times is place P12, P31 and P32. The #23 GT-R LM was quickest, more than 21 seconds off the pace.

There’s more from Porsche after the break, including a brief video.

A full list of times from the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans can be accessed HERE.

Porsche WEC

2015 LM24: Porsche preview

2015 24 Hours of Le Mans, Porsche preview

Porsche has entered three 919 Hybrids for Le Mans this year and after setting the fastest time in last month’s official test session at the Circuit de la Sarthe the team will have good reason to think it can claim victory #17 in the endurance classic.

The 2015-spec 919 is super fast in a straight line and that will hold them in good stead on the 13.629km Le Mans circuit.

Each of the three 919s will carry a unique livery, making them easy to spot. For example, and not so seriously, the red one is #17 and shall be known as Mark Webber’s car. The white one is #19, otherwise known as Nico Hulkenberg’s car. And the black one is #18, known as that other 919.

Joining the LMP1 effort will be four 911 RSRs, two each in the GTE Pro and GTE Am categories. For the ladies out there, you need to keep an eye on the #77 911 RSR which will be driven by Patrick Dempsey, and that other Patrick guy.

Porsche’s full pre-race press release and more pics can be seen after the break.

Porsche 919 Hybrid

#17 – Timo Bernhard (GER), Brendon Hartley (NZ), Mark Webber (AUS)
#18 – Romain Dumas (GER), Neel Jani (SUI), Marc Lieb (GER)
#19 – Earl Bamber (NZ), Nico Hulkenberg (GER), Nick Tandy (GB)

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2015 24 Hours of Le Mans spotter guide

2015 24 Hours of Le Mans spotter guide

The 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans will be held this weekend and as always the talented Andy Blackmore has made his legendary spotter guide available as a free download.

[Source: spotterguides]

Audi Nissan Porsche Toyota WEC

2015 LM24: Quick reference guide to LMP1 cars

Porsche 919 hybrid

The official FIA WEC website brings us a quick reference guide to the class of 2015 LMP1 cars. This year we have representation from Audi, Nissan, Porsche and Toyota. And the best thing about LMP1 is that the cars are all different.

Front-engined, mid-engined; rear wheel drive, front wheel drive, all wheel drive; petrol, diesel and all with varying types of energy recovery systems. It really is a technological masterclass, which will eventually heavily influence the cars we drive on the roads.

In order to try and equalise performance the cars have strict fuel flow limitations they must adhere to. That is, each car has a capped amount of fuel it can use on a single lap, using the 13.6km Circuit de la Sarthe as the basis.

You can download a full season PDF guide (54mb) from the WEC website, which goes into greater detail. After the break a quick reference guide is all yours.

The 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans will take place on the weekend of 13–14 June, with an official test session to be held this Sunday.

[Source: FIA WEC]

Porsche WEC

Porsche debuts 2015-spec 919 Hybrid

2015 Porsche 919 Hybrid

Porsche has been busy working away on its 2015-spec 919 Hybrid since mid-December. But the car’s first serious testing got underway at Yas Marina in Abu Dhabi on the weekend.

The turbocharged 2.0 litre V4 internal combustion engine still beats at the heart of the 919, sending its power to the rear wheels. While electric power boosts performance and grip by feeding the front wheels.

The first WEC race takes place on 12 April at Silverstone in England.