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Head of Porsche Motorsport Enzinger to Step Down

Fritz Enzinger to step down as Porsche Motorsport VP; Thomas Laudenbach named as successor…

Photo: Porsche

Fritz Enzinger will step down as Vice President of Porsche Motorsport at the end of this month and will be succeeded by the company’s electric racing powertrain director Thomas Laudenbach.

Porsche announced on Wednesday that Enzinger is officially stepping down from his position as the head of all Porsche motorsport activities on October 1.

Enzinger, 65, joined Porsche in 2011 and led the manufacturer to three outright 24 Hours of Le Mans victories with the Porsche 919 Hybrid as part of a world championship-winning factory LMP1 program.

His tenure also included titles for Porsche’s works GTE teams in the FIA World Endurance Endurance Championship and IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, as well as the launch of a factory Formula E program that made its race debut in 2019.

“We cannot thank Fritz Enzinger enough for his enormously successful work over the past ten years. He shaped an era at Porsche Motorsport that led us to incredible triumphs and title wins,” said Michael Steiner, Member of the Executive Board for Research and Development at Porsche AG.

“Motorsport has played a very special role in Porsche’s corporate strategy. We’ve always used the racing platform as a test laboratory for the latest technologies. Thomas Laudenbach has everything it takes to successfully continue on this path.

“We look forward to the future of motorsport, in which we want to take an active role in shaping. The Mission R concept presented at the IAA Mobility showcases an exciting preview of what’s to come.”

Enzinger said that he will look back on his decade at the helm of Porsche’s motorsport programs with “pride and gratitude”.

“It was an incredibly intense time,” he noted. “The development of the LMP1 program, the hat-trick at Le Mans and the world championship titles with the 919 Hybrid, the title wins with the 911 RSR, our entry into Formula E and the preparation of our LMDh engagements from 2023 onwards have demanded fortitude and focus from us all.

“Such successes are always the result of excellent teamwork. My greatest respect and thanks go out to everyone who contributed to this – in the cockpit, on the racetrack, in Weissach, Flacht and Zuffenhausen.

“My thanks also go to the strong Porsche customer teams who, among other achievements, clinched overall victories in the 24-hour races at the Nürburgring and in Spa-Francorchamps.

“Motorsport, like the entire automotive industry, is changing. Thanks to his experience and expertise, Thomas Laudenbach is exactly the right man to lead Porsche Motorsport into this future.”

Laudenbach, 53, previously worked for Porsche as its Head of Powertrain Development.

During a seven-year spell in that role, he oversaw the development of engines for several Porsche racing and road cars including the 911 RSR GTE, the 911 GT3 R, the 918 Spyder and the RS Spyder LMP2.

Laudenbach left the company in early 2013 to take up a position at fellow Volkswagen Group brand Audi, where he served as the head of the manufacturer’s electric technologies department within its sports car division.

He returned to Porsche last year as its director of electric motorsport powertrains but will advance to the Vice Presidency at the start of next month.

“I’m thrilled about the trust that’s been placed in me and excited about the tasks ahead,” said Laudenbach.

“The big goal is to build on the great successes that have been achieved under the direction of Fritz Enzinger.

“It’s a wonderful challenge. We will adapt motorsport to the changed conditions in the automotive industry – from customer racing to factory involvement in the major racing series around the globe.

“We have our sights firmly set on claiming our 20th Le Mans victory, we want to win world championships – both in endurance racing and in Formula E.

“It’s also important to continue developing our customer racing. With the Mission R concept study, we are showing how attractive this can look.”

Daniel Lloyd is a UK-based reporter for Sportscar365, covering the FIA World Endurance Championship, Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, among other series.

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