CORE autosport owner Jon Bennett said he’s thankful to Porsche for an “incredible seven years” as operational partners with the German manufacturer’s factory GT Le Mans program, which is now set to come to a close at the end of the year.
Porsche announced Thursday that it will terminate its championship-winning factory GTLM operation at the end of the 2020 season, citing financial challenges surrounding the coronavirus pandemic.
The Rock Hill, S.C.-based team has helped take Porsche to three GTLM manufacturers championships, two team and driver titles as well as 18 class victories since the program’s formation in 2014.
Key moments included overall honors in the 2015 Petit Le Mans, back-to-back triumphs in the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring in 2018 and 2019, as well as victory in the Rolex 24 at Daytona on the program’s debut race.
“CORE’s partnership with Porsche has always been a dream for me,” Bennett said.
“Not just because I love the brand, but because partnering with Porsche’s history and reputation raised the visibility of the exceptional work we do at CORE.
“I thank Porsche for an incredible seven years and I thank our employees who are the best in the business. I am honored we shared this journey together.”
CORE’s current contract with Porsche had been through the end of 2021, although it’s unclear if that has been adjusted.
“This has been an amazing seven-year partnership,” CORE autosport COO Morgan Brady said. “I’m extremely proud of everything we’ve accomplished.
“While we continue to prepare for the remaining ten rounds of the IMSA Championship, we’re sensitive to how this departure will affect our team members and their families.”
Plans for the CORE beyond 2020 are “still to be determined” according to a team statement.