Porsche’s factory motorsports director Pascal Zurlinden has stepped down from his role with the German manufacturer due to “private reasons.”
The news, which broke on Tuesday, comes ahead of this weekend’s penultimate round of the FIA World Endurance Championship season in Bahrain, where Zurlinden will not be present.
Zurlinden had been in charge of Porsche’s factory motorsports activities, including its works GTE-Pro effort in the WEC as well as the upcoming Porsche Penske Motorsport LMDh program that will launch in 2023.
A Porsche spokesperson confirmed to Sportscar365 of Zurlinden’s immediate departure.
“As Porsche Motorsport we regret his decision, but we have to accept his wish,” the spokesperson said.
The spokesperson indicated that Zurlinden wants to remain at Porsche AG, although likely in a non-motorsport capacity.
“At Porsche we all know how much Pascal was dedicated to his role – working with teams, drivers and various championships around the world,” the spokesperson added.
“We can’t thank him enough for this.”
A replacement for Zurlinden has not yet been announced.
The Frenchman first joined Porsche in 2014 as an engineer on the 919 Hybrid LMP1 program before taking over duties for its factory GT programs in 2018, a role that was expanded with the launch of Porsche’s Formula E program and soon-to-be return to top-class prototype competition.
The development comes amid Fritz Enzinger’s retirement as Head of Porsche Motorsport, which has seen Thomas Laudenbach take over the reigns of the motorsport department since October.