Porsche and Team Penske join forces in LMDh
Porsche Motorsport and Team Penske have agreed to collaborate and field a new LMDh vehicle, starting in 2023.
Porsche Motorsport has teamed up with Team Penske to field a new LMDh vehicle from 2023. Porsche’s experts in Weissach will work closely with the US team to run factory entries in the FIA WEC World Endurance Championship (WEC) and the North American IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship (IWSC) under the name Porsche Penske Motorsport.
As of 2023, two spectacular LMDh prototypes will compete for overall victories in the top class of each of the two racing series and the contract between the two parties is set to run for a number of years.
The LMDh vehicles will represent the very best in endurance racing together with hypercars (LMH) and Porsche customer teams will be able to enter the former in both championships as early as 2023. The cars, which weigh approximately 1,000 kilograms and are based on an LMP2 chassis, are powered by a 500 kW (680 PS) hybrid drivetrain.
"We are delighted that we were able to form this partnership with Team Penske," says Oliver Blume, Chairman of the Executive Board of Porsche AG. "For the first time in the history of Porsche Motorsport, our company will have a global team competing in the world's two largest endurance series. To this end, we will be setting up team bases on both sides of the Atlantic. This will enable us to create the optimal structures we will need to take overall victories at Le Mans, Daytona and Sebring, for example."
The signing of the contract
"As of 2023, Porsche will compete in the major endurance racing series. Our intention is to support and shape the new era with our LMDh prototypes," says Michael Steiner, Board Member for Research and Development. "Not only will we be keeping our fingers crossed for the four factory cars we have in total, but also for our customer teams. The new LMDh vehicle will also be entered as a customer car in both series as early as the 2023 season. These partner teams will be given our full support. Whatever insights we gain from our factory effort will also be shared with them."
“Porsche and Penske share a proven track record of success. This partnership had a lasting impact from 2006 to 2008 on what was then the American Le Mans Series," continues Fritz Enzinger, Head of Porsche Motorsport, who revealed his delight about the renewed collaboration with the US team. "Team Penske has made a name for itself with an almost unparalleled success story in motorsport. In the long list of victories to-date, however, the name Le Mans has been missing. I hope that we will finally be able to chalk up this success as of 2023 with Porsche Penske Motorsport. This would then mark Porsche's 20th overall victory at La Sarthe – a dream come true."
With the Porsche RS Spyder, Team Penske took all the titles in the LMP2 class for three years in succession between 2006 and 2008, beating the faster LMP1 prototypes multiple times. Back in the 1970s, the US-based team was also extremely successful with the legendary Porsche 917 in the Can-Am series.
The Porsche RS Spyder at Sebring in 2008
“This is a proud day for our entire Penske organisation. We have represented Porsche on the track or in our businesses for more than six decades. The heritage and success we have enjoyed together is unparalleled throughout our history,” says Roger Penske. “I can’t wait to get started as we build a global racing programme with Porsche that will compete for wins and championships well into the future.”
Porsche Motorsport will be operating a team base in the US together with Team Penske at the American team's headquarters in Mooresville in North Carolina.