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Porsche Confirms IMSA Lineups; Two-Car Factory 24H Le Mans Effort

Porsche confirms IMSA lineups, two extra GTE-Pro cars at LM24…

Photo: IMSA

Photo: IMSA

While Porsche will only have one GTE-Pro entry for the full FIA World Endurance Championship season, it will feature an additional two cars in the class at this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Subject to approval from the ACO, two additional entries will feature in GTE-Pro from Porsche Team Manthey.

“We would be very pleased to receive confirmation from the ACO for two GTE-Pro grid spots at Le Mans,” said Head of Porsche Motorsport Dr. Frank-Steffen Walliser.

In addition, Porsche North America’s lineup for the full IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season has been confirmed.

Patrick Pilet and Nick Tandy will share the No. 911 Porsche 911 RSR in IMSA, and will be joined at Le Mans by newly signed factory driver Kevin Estre, who made his Le Mans debut this year in a LMP2 car.

Meanwhile Fred Makowiecki and Earl Bamber will share the second full-season IMSA entry, the No. 912 Porsche 911 RSR, with Joerg Bergmiester joining them at Le Mans.

Estre will join Pilet and Tandy in all four Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup events, while Michael Christensen will be in the No. 912 car at the Patron Endurance Cup rounds.

While Bamber and Tandy will not be able to defend their overall win, either one of them now has a shot to do so in a second class, GTE-Pro, this year.

It gives Porsche an extra pair of cars to tackle what is expected to be an increased GTE-Pro class field at Le Mans this season, with potentially up to four Ford GTs from Ford Chip Ganassi Racing and the usual two cars from Corvette Racing joining Porsche’s WEC rivals from Ferrari and Aston Martin, both of which have new cars.

Pilet, meanwhile, has a shot to defend his IMSA GT Le Mans class title and Porsche will have the opportunity to defend its Manufacturer’s Championship.

In addition to the factory entries in IMSA, Porsche has also confirmed Wolf Henzler (No. 23 Alex Job Racing), Bergmeister (No. 73 Park Place Motorsports) and Patrick Long (Black Swan Racing) as extra drivers in Porsche 911 GT3 Rs in GT Daytona for the Rolex 24 at Daytona.

Porsche has also confirmed a fifth car to join the four previously announced GT3 Rs for the Rolex 24, from a fourth team. That team and driver lineup will be revealed at a later date.

Tony DiZinno (@tonydizinno) is Sportscar365's North American Editor, focusing on coverage of the IMSA-sanctioned championships as well as Pirelli World Challenge. DiZinno also contributes to NBCSports.com and other motorsports outlets. Contact Tony

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