Porsche has announced a series of changes to its motorsport programme for 2015. Next year’s schedule was set out at the annual Night of Champions, where Jaap van Lagen was awarded the Porsche Cup as the most successful private driver competing in a Porsche during 2014.
Van Lagen is in rarified company, as only the second Dutch driver in the trophy’s long history to win this prestigious award. The other Dutch champ was the great Gijs van Lennep, who claimed the first Porsche Cup from Ferry himself back in 1970. Jaap’s prize: a brand new 911 Carrera S. Well done that man!
This was a week with much to celebrate. Weissach enjoyed a successful roll-out of the 2015 Porsche 919 LMP1 Hybrid with Marc Lieb piloting. The first test is scheduled for January 18-22 in Abu Dhabi: hopefully will coincide with a trip I am taking there also.
Porsche Motorsport 2015
Great to see Earl Bamber get a works drive for 2015: another richly deserved step towards a very bright future. Bamber’s awesome performances in Supercup and as a works stand-in did the trick.
A pair of works RSRs will race in America, from the Daytona 24 season opener. Bamber will partner Fred Makowiecki and Jörg Bergmeister in car 911, while Nick Tandy, Patrick Pilet and Marc Lieb share the sister 912. No mention yet of what super-quick Marco Holzer will be up to next year, but he was happy to tweet this pic of the boys decompressing with slot cars:
Taking Earl’s slot in Supercup is highly talented Italian teenager, Matteo Cairoli. I’m excited to see what Matteo can do in Supercup against the 2015 Porsche Juniors, Sven Müller and Connor de Phillippi. Also new to Supercup is incoming championship manager, thirty-three year-old Oliver Schwab. The former motorsport chief at Porsche China takes over from Jonas Krauss, who is leaving the company.
Every year, new names join the Porsche works squad and every year I expect to see someone lose out. While it has dropped two Juniors this year – farewell to Klaus Bachler and Alex Riberas – Porsche still maintains the biggest works driver lineup that I can remember, and more names will join for Le Mans, when Nico Hülkenberg (below) slides into the Porsche LMP1. We’re all keen to see who will partner the German, and how he will fare at La Sarthe. No one is keener than Porsche CEO, Matthias Müller.
“Motorsport is the soul and principle of this company,” said Herr Müller. “The best and most innovative technologies in our roadgoing sports cars come directly from motorsport.” A sentiment echoed by Wolfgang Hatz. “For Porsche, racing is more than an end in itself. On race tracks around the world, we test and develop technologies that are relevant for our sports car customers on the street.”
For all the chat about racing to develop road car technology, some of us go racing for one reason only: beating the rest. If we’re not winning, we’re losing, and we don’t like to lose! I’m not that bothered about how many cars Porsche sells, as long as each of these boys races their nuts off, and hopefully brings us to victory. The 2015 team looks like a potential winner to me, as it must be to beat the awesome Toyota squad. Roll on 2015!