Porsche has revealed the four driver crews that will compete at this year’s Le Mans 24 Hours in GTE Pro for what will be the 911 RSR-19’s maiden appearance in the French endurance classic.
While its full-season FIA WEC pairings remain untouched, there has been some significant shuffling in the line-ups for its pair of guest-entered IMSA 911 RSR 19s.
The two full-season WEC 911s will race with the same crews at La Sarthe for the third consecutive year.
“The same driver trios will tackle Le Mans at the wheel of the 91 and 92 Porsche 911 RSR racers for the third time,” said Alexander Stehlig, Porsche’s FIA WEC head of operations.
“Each of the two regular WEC drivers will be supported by an experienced pilot. This continuity has the advantage of allowing the crews, engineers and mechanics to work together in perfect synergy. Since Le Mans is the last WEC race of the season, we don’t want to take any chances with new driver line-ups in the final bid for the title.”
Laurens Vanthoor (Daytona photo above) will partner Kevin Estre and Michael Christensen in the No. 92, while Makowiecki will join the No. 91 pairing Gianmaria Bruni and Richard Lietz.
Meanwhile, IMSA regulars Earl Bamber and Nick Tandy will share the No. 93, joined by Australian Matt Campbell. On the other side of the garage, the No. 94 will be driven by the all-French trio of Patrick Pilet, Julien Andlauer and Mathieu Jaminet team up.
The three Frenchmen in the No. 94 have a longstanding relationship: Pilet took Jaminet and Andlauer under his wing during their development as part of his role at Porsche, tasked with mentoring the brand’s junior national drivers after winning the French Porsche Carrera Cup in 2007.
“I’ve accompanied Mathieu and Julien for quite some time on their journey as racing drivers, and I’ve developed a close bond with them,” Pilet said. “It’s an honor and a pleasure for me to share the cockpit at Le Mans with these two talented young men. Together, we’ll attempt to win the world’s most prestigious endurance race.”
Porsche is expected to be the only factory racing with four cars at Le Mans in GTE Pro this year. Despite this, Fritz Enzinger, Porsche’s vice president of motorsport continues to feel that strength in numbers is important.
“Fielding four works cars again in the GTE-Pro category at Le Mans underlines how important this classic is for Porsche,” he said.
“With the championship squads from the FIA WEC and the IMSA WeatherTech Championship, we have a treasure trove of expertise at the start plus a good balance of experienced and young drivers. We aim to fight for victory, but we know from experience that such long-distance races are full of surprises.”