May 16, 2016
Early each week, Porsche Cars North America will provide a weekend summary or pre-race event notes package, covering the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, Pirelli World Challenge (PWC), the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) or other areas of interest from the world of Porsche Motorsport. Please utilize this resource as needed, and do not hesitate to contact us for additional information.
- Porsche Cars North America Motorsports Public Relations Team
Porsche Motorsports Weekly Event Notes. Monday, May 16, 2016
Pirelli World Challenge
Event. Castrol Presents Victoria Day Speedfest, Canadian Tire Motorsports Park
Dateline. Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
Date. Race 1. Saturday, May 21
Race 2. Sunday, May 22
Race Duration. Two, One-Hour Races
Class. GT/GTA (Porsche 911 GT3 R)
GT Cup (Porsche 911 GT3 Cup)
Round. GT/GTA. Eight and Nine of 22
GT Cup. Seven and Eight of 22
Next Round. GT/GTA/GT Cup, Lime Rock Park, Lakeville, Connecticut, May 27 - 28
Porsche Profile. Event Story Lines
Long Finds The Wright Team. Factory Driver Continues Chase for Pirelli World Challenge Title with New 911 GT3 R Team.
A week ago, it looked unlikely that Patrick Long, North America’s only Porsche factory driver, was going to get the opportunity to continue his challenge for a second Pirelli World Challenge GT Driver’s title. EFFORT Racing, the team he had started the 2016 season with, took an immediate sabbatical from competition to pursue full funding in 2017. Left without a ride, the Manhattan Beach, California-resident, with the support of the whole Porsche motorsport community, began to search for a 911 GT3 R ride in the continent’s premier sprint racing-format sports car series. It was longtime Porsche racecar preparer John Wright who provided the answer. Wright Motorsports, which already enters the No. 16 Porsche 911 GT3 R for Michael Schein (Glen Cove, New York) in the GTA class, will prepare and enter Long’s entry for the remainder of the season.
Typically, such a transition after seven rounds of the championship would mean an extended familiarization period between the drivers and the team. However, Long is a familiar face in the Wright Motorsports paddock having been a driving coach for the program as well as for Schein personally. The 911 GT3 R, based on the seventh-generation platform of the iconic rear-engine sports car and new to all teams in 2016, is also familiar as Long captured the direct-injection machine’s first-ever podium in the IMSA WeatherTech Championship’s Rolex 24 At Daytona in January, and maiden victory, the season-opening World Challenge race at the Circuit of the Americas, in March. Schein, a rookie in the series, already has enjoyed podium finishes in three of the four GTA races run to date further underscoring the organization’s comfort with the 911 GT3 R.
Long, who is the 2011 Pirelli World Challenge GT class champion, currently sits fifth in the title chase. Schein is fifth in the GTA (GT Amateur) category. The team will join the 21-car GT/GTA field in the Pirelli World Challenge’s next round, the Victoria Day Speedfest at Canadian Tire Motorsports Park, May 19-22.
John Wright, Owner, Wright Motorsports.
“It's unfortunate how Patrick's program with us came together because we don't want to capitalize on another team's misfortunes, but we've worked with him many times in the past, we know he'll be a great benefit to our team, and we're excited to have him on board. I also want to thank Michael Schein for committing to campaign a Porsche GT3 R in Pirelli World Challenge this year. That provided the infrastructure we needed to add Patrick's car to our PWC program. Michael and Patrick have also worked together in the past, and they have a great working relationship as well."
Patrick Long, Driver, Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.
“This is a rare chance to take a very difficult situation and quickly turn it around. I'm grateful for the opportunity that John and Michael have given me. It's been humbling, and I'm elated to be able to continue in the series with Wright Motorsports. I've worked with John in many different programs over the years, and we've had a lot of success together. It's always great to work with him and his team."
Jens Walther, President/CEO, Porsche Motorsport North America.
“We are very pleased that John Wright has expanded his program to include a second Porsche 911 GT3 R for Patrick Long. While facing the disappointment of losing EFFORT Racing for the season we simultaneously had the responsibility to Patrick to maintain the push for the Pirelli World Championship GT title. Wright Motorsports has been a longtime customer and is a great landing point for Patrick. While a difficult circumstance, I am proud how the extended Porsche family came together to help find a solution. Now, it is possible for Wright Motorsports to prepare Porsche contenders not only for the GT and GTA classes in Pirelli World Challenge but also for the Porsche GT3 Cup USA Challenge by Yokohama.”
Canadian Challenge. Pirelli World Challenge Moves to Quick CTMP.
It has been nearly a month since the Pirelli World Challenge was on track but North America’s premier sprint-racing format sports car series is back with a vengeance at the ultra-quick Canadian Tire Motorsports Park. The May 19-23 Castrol Presents Victoria Day Speedfest at the 10-turn, 2.458 circuit north of Toronto has a long tradition of great racing and spectacular speed. The two, 50-minute GT, GTA and GT Cup-combined races are scheduled to see 25-cars on the grid - nine of which will be Porsche 911-based racers - ensuring the legacy of tight racing is likely to continue.
The GT class will see factory pilot Patrick Long (Manhattan Beach, California) in the No. 58 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R for the first time. Long is currently fifth in the points and is making the switch to the Ohio-based operation after the team he started the season, and won with, went on hiatus to look for 2017 sponsorship. The new seat will provide Long with a chance to earn his second Pirelli World Challenge GT title, the first coming when he last ran a full season, 2011. Teaming with Long will be Michael Schein (Glen Cove, New York). Schein, who races in the No. 16 911 GT3 R in the GT Amateur (GTA) class, has stood on the podium three times in four attempts. With Long in the stable beside him, Wright Motorsports has the opportunity for a GT-GTA sweep. Andrew Davis (Athens, Georgia) and Calvert Racing continue to make strides up through the GT class ranks as team and driver find the sweet spot on the rear-engine 911 GT3 R.
The GT Cup class, which uses Mobil 1 Porsche Supercup regulations to rule the one-make class, sees a balanced battle entering the Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada track. Five Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars will be fighting for the win. Sloan Urry (Park City, Utah) swept the first four rounds in the No. 20 TruSpeed Autosport machine. However, a non-racing injury opened the door just enough to allow Alec Udell (The Woodlands, Texas), who had been closely chasing Urry all season in the No. 17 GMG Porsche, to sneak past for back-to-back wins at the most recent round at Barber Motorsports Park. Closing out the class is the No. 77 Calvert Dynamics 911 GT3 Cup car of Preston Calvert (Potomac, Maryland). Corey Fergus (Columbus, Ohio) has been challenging in the No.00 Motorsports Promotions machine for much of the season while Chris Green will carry the flag for Canada in the No. 09 Pfaff Motorsports entry.
Michael Schein, Driver, No. 16 Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.
"I'm looking forward to getting back in the 911 GT3 R next week. Canadian Tire Motorsport Park is probably my favorite track on the calendar, and the Wright Motorsports crew has given me podium-finishing cars there in the past. Driving a Cup car around there is great fun, so going five-seconds a lap faster in the GT3-spec Porsche will be one wild ride. Similar to Barber Motorsports Park, Canadian Tire Motorsport Park is a hard track to pass on, so qualifying will be important. I had a good couple of races at Barber so I'm hoping we can improve upon that success heading into Canada.”
Spring In Canada. GT3 Cup Challenge Canada by Yokohama To Open 2016 Season.
The Ultra 94 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada by Yokohama starts its sixth season on Castrol Presents The Victoria Day SpeedFest Weekend at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park with a new look, in more ways than one.
Two, 45-minute races will take place for Canada’s top sports car series May 20-22 at CTMP. Round 1 on Saturday, May 21, with Round 2 Sunday, May 22 on the 10-turn, 2.459-mile (3.957 km) course.
The first change is the return of the Silver Cup class for the first time since 2014, this time featuring the new Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport racecar. The Silver Cup Cayman cars will race simultaneously with Platinum Cup and Gold Cup classes for Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars.
Another change for the International Motor Sports Association (IMSA)-sanctioned Single-Make Series is a switch to Yokohama tires. The Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama has competed on Yokohama tires since 2009, and the move to Yokohama by the Canadian series will allow both championships to race simultaneously on the same track for the first time, in June at Montreal and in July at Watkins Glen.
Chris Green broke through with his first Platinum Cup championship last season in a Porsche fielded by Toronto-area powerhouse Pfaff Motorsports. Green, from Montreal, launched his title-winning campaign with two victories in 2015. But Green is racing only a partial season in the championship in 2016. So a queue of contenders has lined up to succeed him, led by young star Daniel Morad.
Valerie Chiasson will make her series debut at CTMP as the first full-time female competitor in the history of the championship. Chiasson, from Repentigny, Quebec, will drive a Porsche Prestige entry.
Porsche 911 RSR Successor On Track. Testing of Next Generation GT Racer Underway.
In 2017, a completely new car will replace the most successful GT racecar of the 2015 season. The successor to the Porsche 911 RSR has already completed a successful rollout on the Porsche test track in Weissach, Germany. Broader testing now begins at selected racetracks around the world.
During its first test runs at Weissach, the majority of the Porsche factory drivers were able to get a first impression of the new 2017 GTE/GTLM class racecar.
The first competition outing of the 911 RSR successor is planned for January 2017 at the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season-opening Rolex 24 At Daytona.
The new car will compete in the factory-focused GT Le Mans (GTLM) class in the WeatherTech Championship next season. The current top Porsche GT car won three titles in 2015 - Manufacturer, Team (Porsche North America) and Driver (Patrick Pilet) - and is already a winner in the 2016 title chase.
Dr. Frank-Steffen Walliser, Head of Porsche Motorsport.
“The race debut of a completely new vehicle at a 24-hour race is a big challenge. But we are right on schedule.”
Marco Ujhasi, Overall Project Manager GT Works Motorsport.
“It is definitely unusual to put several drivers behind the wheel at a rollout. But since all of our works drivers are involved in the development of the new car, the ones who could fit it into their schedules came to Weissach and turned a couple of laps.”
Images available at.
Multitasking. Driving the Porsche 919 Hybrid Requires More Than Point and Shoot.
With hands and feet, courage, experience and instinct the drivers control the Porsche 919 Hybrid in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC). Underneath the feet play heel-and-toe. Some of the Porsche factory drivers use their left foot for braking, others prefer to switch with the right one between throttle and brake. But what they do with their hands is a lot more complicated, as the drivers operate a computer. Pointing the car in the right direction is the most trivial task the steering wheel does. The drivers operate 24 buttons and switches on the front as well as six paddles on the reverse side to control the most complex racing car on earth. For the 2016 season, the buttons and switches on the steering wheel were carefully re-positioned in cooperation with the drivers, to facilitate reliable operation at racing pace - in Le Mans top speeds are up to 210 mph. Some control elements had to go on the dashboard because there is simply no more room on the steering wheel.
The wheel isn’t round, but a flat rectangle. The shape is due to the space required during driver changes. Tall drivers such as Mark Webber (Australia) or Brendon Hartley (New Zealand), in particular, would otherwise have difficulties in accommodating their long legs quickly. There is a large display in the center of the “wheel”, which shows the driver a multitude of information. This includes the speed, what gear is engaged, the currently selected motor management, and the charge status of the lithium ion battery, i.e. how much electrical energy is available to be called up to drive the front axle. The electric motor on the front axle supplements the turbocharged 2-liter, 4-cylinder internal combustion engine, which drives the rear wheels. The control button at the top left (named DISP) is used to select the displayed information.
The most frequently used buttons are positioned along the top outside edge, so they are easy to reach with the thumb. The blue button at the top right is almost always in use - it is the headlight flasher, used by the fast prototypes to warn the slower vehicles in the WEC field before they are lapped. When pushed once, it causes the headlights to flash three times. In daylight, the drivers keep their thumb on it almost permanently, as naturally the headlight signal is more difficult to perceive at that time.
The red button at the top left is also very frequently used. It is used to demand electrical power from the battery, the so-called “boost". The drivers can boost to pass, but must be clever about rationing the power. The amount of energy per lap is specified. The yardstick is one lap in Le Mans, where eight megajoules of energy are available. The amounts are converted accordingly for shorter circuits. The amount of energy a driver uses, for example, in the middle of a lap to get free of traffic will not be available for the rest of the lap.
The rotary switches left and right below the display (TC/CON and TC R) are for presetting the traction control. To fine tune for various engine and hybrid settings, the drivers use the buttons on the top two levels, TF- and TF+ in light yellow, MI- and MI+ in blue. Below them there are the plus and minus buttons in pink to distribute the brake balance (BR) between the front and rear axle.
From the green buttons, the left one operates the radio (RAD) and the one on the right hand side is the OK button for the driver to confirm he performed the setting changes requested from him via the pit radio. A multi-directional telemetry is prohibited, the engineers are not allowed to interfere actively, they can just give the drivers information and orders from the data they receive.
The orange buttons on the next level below operate the drink bottle (left, DRINK) and on the right hand side the sailing mode (SAIL), which is a fuel saving driving mode with no acceleration from the combustion engine.
The golden colored button PIT on the left hand side engages the speed limiter for the pit lane (37 mph). Its equivalent on the right hand side is labeled FCY and is the speed limiter for neutralization periods, as when there is a “Full Course Yellow” all cars have to go at 50 mph.
The center rotary switch named MULTI corresponds with the two controllers at the very top outside of the steering wheel. When the race engineer, for example, asks for the setting “Alpha 21”, the driver chooses “A” with the rotary switch, then he chooses the 2 by the left hand red controller and finally the single digit 1 by the dark green right controller before pressing the OK button. Programs for engine management or fuel management are designated by such combinations. The green rotary switch (RECUP) is for the energy recovery management.
In the center of the lowest level sits the on/off switch for the combustion engine (Start/Kill). The two remaining controllers halfway up the steering wheel define the amount of energy when boosting (B - golden and on the left) and offer the strategy choice for the combustion engine (S - blue and on the right).
To make the switches easier to recognize in the dark, their colors are fluorescent and respond to a black light lamp, which is situated above the driver's helmet.
The steering wheel is made of carbon; the grip handles are covered in slip-resistant rubber. Thanks to the power steering system, drivers can steer the car without any difficulty, even with the relatively narrow grips. When reaching through the openings, their fingers touch six paddles on the reverse side of the steering wheel. The center paddles are used for changing gears - pulling the right paddle is for upshifting, and pulling the left paddle is for downshifting. The lowermost paddles operate the clutch, the paddles at the top operate the boost; whether the drivers use this paddles or the boost button described on the front is purely a matter of preference.
The steering wheel can’t become any larger, as it is running out of space to host all operating functions, so for some changes the drivers have to reach over to the dashboard. There they dim the display light at night, tune the windscreen wiper’s speed and the volume of the radio. There is also the “N” button, which puts the gearbox into neutral.
Images available at.
Pirelli World Challenge
Total Car Count. 9 Porsche entries
GT Class (3) Porsche 911 GT3 R
No. 14 GMG Racing James Sofronas (Villa Park, California)
No. 58 Wright Motorsports Patrick Long (Manhattan Beach, California)
No. 76 Calvert Dynamics Andrew Davis (Athens, Georgia)
GTA Class (1) Porsche 911 GT3 R
No. 16 Wright Motorsports Michael Schein (Glen Cove, New York)
GT Cup Class (5) Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
No. 17 GMG Racing Alec Udell (The Woodlands, Texas)
No. 20 TruSpeed Autosport Sloan Urry (Park City, Utah)
No. 77 Calvert Dynamics Preston Calvert (Potomac, Maryland)
No. 00 Motorsports Promotions Corey Fergus (Columbus, Ohio)
No. 09 Pfaff Motorsports Chris Green (Montreal, Canada)
Where to Watch.
Pirelli World Challenge
Sunday, May 29
12:00 p.m. (Noon) ET CBS Sports Network
Live Race Video Streaming
Live Qualifying Streaming
Live Timing and Scoring
Porsche Cars North America. @Porsche
Porsche North America. @PorscheNARacing
Porsche Motorsport - GT Cars. @PorscheRaces
Porsche Racing - 919 Hybrid. @Porsche_Team
Porsche 911 RSR. #911RSR
Porsche 911 GT3 R. #911GT3R
Porsche 919 Hybrid. #919hybrid
Victoria Day Speedfest #PWCCTMP
GT3 Cup Challenge USA. #GT3USA
Upcoming Porsche Events
Pirelli World Challenge
Ultra 94 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada by Yokohama
Event. Canadian Tire Motorsports Park GP presented by Audi, Canadian Tire Motorsports Park
Dateline. Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada
Date. Race 1. Saturday, May 21
Race 2. Sunday, May 22
Race Duration. Two, 45-minute Races
Class. Platinum (Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 2014-2016 MY)
Gold (Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, 2010-2013 MY)
Silver (Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport)
Round. One and Two of Six
Next Round. Canadian Grand Prix, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, June 10 - 12
IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship
Event. Chevrolet Sports Car Classic, Raceway at Belle Isle Park
Dateline. Detroit, Michigan
Date. Saturday, June 4
Race Duration. One Hour, 40-minutes
Class. GTD (Porsche 911 GT3 R)
Round. GTD. Four of Ten
Next Round. GTLM and GTD. Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen, Watkins Glen International, Watkins Glen, New York, June 30 - July 3
FIA World Endurance Championship
Event. 24 Hours of Le Mans, Circuit de la Sarthe
Dateline. Le Mans, France
Date. Saturday-Sunday, June 16-19
Race Duration. 24-hours
Classes. LMP1 (Porsche 919 Hybrid), LMGTE-Pro (Porsche 911 RSR, LMGTE-Am (Porsche 911 RSR)
Round. Three of Nine
Next Round. Six Hours of Nürburgring, The Nürburgring, Nürburg, Germany, July 24
Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge
Event. Continental 150. Watkins Glen International
Dateline. Watkins Glen, New York
Date. Saturday, July 2
Race Duration. Two Hours, 30-minutes
Class. Grand Sport (GS) (Porsche Cayman GT4 Clubsport)
Round. Four of Ten
Next Round. Canadian Tire Motorsports Park, Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada, July 8 - 9
Images and Video from the venue.
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