Porsche partners with Penske on LMDh campaign

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Porsche is to partner with Team Penske when it returns to top-flight sportscar racing in 2023. The US team will run Porsche’s entries in both the WEC and IMSA under the LMDh class, with the cars fielded under the name of Porsche Penske Motorsport.

Porsche has a successful history with Roger Penske’s outfit. The two partners were last active in 2008 running Porsche Spyder LM P2 machines to great effect in the ALMS (American Le Mans Series). Porsche is yet to announce its chassis partner on the LMDh project, but it seems likely that Multimatic will provide base chassis to both Porsche and Audi, with the cars running different body and powertrain configurations.

“We are delighted that we were able to form this partnership with Team Penske,” said Oliver Blume, chairman of the executive board of Porsche AG. “For the first time in the history of Porsche Motorsport, our company will have a global team competing in the world’s two largest endurance series. To this end, we will be setting up team bases on both sides of the Atlantic. This will enable us to create the optimal structures we will need to take overall victories at Le Mans, Daytona and Sebring, for example.” In the US, Porsche’s cars will be based at Penske’s facility in Mooresville, North Carolina.

Unsurprisingly, Porsche’s goal is overall victory at Le Mans, with Fritz Enzinger, head of Porsche Motorsport, stating, “Porsche and Penske share a proven track record of success. This partnership had a lasting impact from 2006 to 2008 on what was then the American Le Mans Series. Team Penske has made a name for itself with an almost unparalleled success story in motorsport. In the long list of victories to date, however, the name Le Mans has been missing. I hope that we will finally be able to chalk up this success as of 2023 with Porsche Penske Motorsport. This would then mark Porsche’s 20th overall victory at La Sarthe – a dream come true.”

According to Michael Steiner, board member for research and development, Porsche is also targeting customer teams. “Not only will we be keeping our fingers crossed for the four factory cars we have in total, but also for our customer teams. The new LMDh vehicle will also be entered as a customer car in both series as early as the 2023 season. These partner teams will be given our full support. Whatever insights we gain from our factory effort will also be shared with them.”

Roger Penske expressed considerable satisfaction that his team would once again be flying the Porsche colors. “This is a proud day for our entire Penske organization. We have represented Porsche on the track or in our businesses for more than six decades. The heritage and success we have enjoyed together are unparalleled throughout our history. I can’t wait to get started as we build a global racing program with Porsche that will compete for wins and championships well into the future.”

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Lawrence has been covering engineering subjects – with a focus on motorsport technology – since 2007 and has edited and contributed to a variety of international titles. Currently, he oversees Automotive Powertrain Technology and Professional Motorsport World magazines as editor.

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