Porsche 963, Porsche Penske Motorsport (#7), Felipe Nasr (BR), Matt Campbell (AUS), Josef Newgarden (USA); Porsche Penske Motorsport (#6), Nick Tandy (UK), Mathieu Jaminet (F), Laurens Vanthoor (B)
Laurens Vanthoor supports the crew of the number 6 Porsche 963
This year’s Indianapolis 500 winner to make his PPM debut with No. 7
10-hour race at Road Atlanta concludes IMSA season
Porsche Penske Motorsport will contest the season finale of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at Road Atlanta with a modified driver line-up. At the "Petit Le Mans", reigning Indianapolis 500 winner and two-time INDYCAR Champion Josef Newgarden from the USA and Belgian Laurens Vanthoor will reinforce the regular crews as the third man in each of the cockpits of the two Porsche 963 factory cars. The ten-hour endurance race in the US state of Georgia takes place on October 14.
The factory drivers in the Porsche Penske Motorsport hybrid prototypes receive prominent support for the eleventh and final round of this year's IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship. Briton Nick Tandy and Mathieu Jaminet from France will start the race in the number 6 Porsche 963 together with their colleague Laurens Vanthoor. The Belgian is part of the Porsche Penske Motorsport factory line-up in the FIA World Endurance Championship WEC and knows the GTP race car according to LMDh regulations well. Indianapolis 500 champion Josef Newgarden will complement Australian Matt Campbell and Felipe Nasr from Brazil in the number 7 car.
“Porsche Penske Motorsport has chosen to add Laurens Vanthoor and Josef Newgarden to our Petit Le Mans line up,“ said Managing Director, Jonathan Diuguid. „Laurens has raced at Road Atlanta in the Porsche 911 RSR and he will be able to add his experience from racing in the WEC for PPM. Josef brings a different dynamic as this year’s Indianapolis 500 winner, it will be something very exciting for the team as well as himself. Josef has increased his exposure to sportscar racing already in 2023 with a test in the Team Penske LMP2, as well as raced in Daytona in 2023. In addition, he got his first exposure to the 963 in early June at Road America. With several testing days for the team at Road Atlanta, we are confident that both Laurens and Josef will be fully prepared to deliver for the team and have a positive result in the final race of the season.”
Both the Tandy/Jaminet driver pairing and Campbell and Nasr have already won IMSA races in the debut year of the Porsche 963. The number 6 car drove to victory in the 100-minute sprint race on the Long Beach street circuit, and the number 7 Porsche recently repeated this success at Road America in Elkhart Lake (Wisconsin).
Laurens Vanthoor took the first podium position for the Porsche Penske Motorsport WEC team at the first European race of the FIA World Endurance Championship in Portimão, Portugal. He currently occupies eighth place in the drivers' standings of this championship. He has contested the Petit Le Mans several times in the past with the 911 RSR of the Porsche factory team and with the Porsche 911 GT3 R for the Pfaff Motorsports customer team. In 2021, Vanthoor finished second in the GTD class.
“I’m really excited to compete with the team’s IMSA program and help them wrap up their season, as they try and attain both the team and manufacture championships,” said the Belgian. “I feel like my experience at the track will help, and working closely with Nick, Mathieu and the entire team will help myself gain even more perspective of the overall organization as we wrap up the WEC season in Bahrain at the beginning of November.”
Josef Newgarden will make his race debut for Porsche Penske Motorsport on October 14 at Road Atlanta at the wheel of a GTP hybrid car. The US American can already look back on 29 race wins in the INDYCAR Series. He has four of them to his credit this season, including his first - and 19th for Team Penske - success at the famous Indianapolis 500. Newgarden celebrated his IMSA debut in January this year at the 24 Hours of Daytona. He finished eleventh overall and fifth in the LMP2 class.
“I have a lot of respect and admiration for both the Penske and Porsche brands, and the combination between the two through Porsche Penske Motorsport is a dream scenario for any racing car driver and is an absolute honor to be a part of,” said Newgarden, a native of Tennessee. “Watching the dedicated teams build this program from the ground up over the last couple of years has been exciting to watch, and seeing both Porsche 963 get wins this year and compete for championships shows that all the hard work has paid off. My goal is to add to the program and help support the tremendous efforts that Porsche Penske Motorsport have put in place. With some good fortune, I’m sure we can turn effort into results together.”