He raced for Flying Lizards, Black Swans, White Lightnings, Bucklers, Jobs, Dempseys, Wrights, COREs, and even The Captain — Roger Penske — in an illustrious career as the only American factory pilot for Porsche.
And after 20 years of professional racing which netted 50 major wins, Patrick Long will bid farewell to his full-time driving activities after completing Saturday’s Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta and shift to a new role with the German brand as “Ambassador for Porsche Cars North America.”
“My passion for motorsports has not lessened since the first time I sat in a kart,” Long said. “In fact, I would say it is greater than ever before. But, in the last several months I have recognized that the focus of that passion has gradually shifted. I still love to race, to make a Porsche do what I want it to do and, most of all, to win. But that passion is now more fulfilled by taking part in the bigger picture. To support the brand that has supported me and to help usher in a future of Porsche Motorsport that holds true to where Porsche came from.”
Long, whose tenure with Porsche delivered five championships, two class victories at the 24 Hours of Le Mans and wins at the 12 Hours of Sebring and 24 Hours of Daytona, has also branched out into advancing Porsche’s automotive and racing culture with his “Luftgekühlt” car shows. All of his experience and influence will be utilized by the brand going forward.
“In addition to his role with PCNA, Long remains an intricate part of the planning and execution of key Porsche Motorsport programs in North America through PMNA as ‘Competition Advisor,’” Porsche wrote. “While he will no longer pursue full-season rides at the top level, his new role will allow the technical-minded driver an opportunity to test and compete in current machinery while assisting Porsche customer and factory teams where needed. To satisfy the keen competitive nature that made him a legend on-track, Long also plans to strap into the cockpit of historic and vintage Porsche racing machines at some of the largest automotive events around the globe.”
Long’s last start as a full-timer for Porsche comes this weekend with Wright Motorsports No. 16 Porsche 911 GT3 R at IMSA’s 10-hour season finale.
“I am honored and excited by these new roles with Porsche Cars North America and Porsche Motorsport North America,” he said. “It is bittersweet, of course, to not be lining up at the Rolex 24 in 2022 after 18 consecutive starts, but I know that this is the right decision for me, and I am excited to help steer the future of Porsche in a different but equally fulfilling way.”