Porsche has successfully defended its lead in the world championship at round two of FIA World Endurance Championship. At the six-hour race in Fuji (Japan), Denmark’s Michael Christensen and the Frenchman Kévin Estre finished in second place with the No. 92 Porsche 911 RSR
At the same time, the world champions moved into the lead of the drivers’ championship. Their factory driver colleagues Gianmaria Bruni (Italy) and Richard Lietz (Austria), who won the season-opening round at Silverstone (Great Britain), saw the chequered flag in sixth place. In the GTE-Am class, the Porsche customer team from Germany, Project 1, finished on third place.
Christensen and Estre launched an impressive charge through the field in the race at the foot of Mount Fuji. Thanks to fast lap times and the team’s clever strategic decisions, the ca. 515 hp 911 RSR, which is based on the high-performance Porsche 911 GT3 RS* road-going sports car, worked its way up the order from the last grid spot. When rain set in after the first third of the race, the Porsche GT Team opted for the best tyre choice, and completed the pit stops at the right time during the caution phases. The Silverstone winners, Lietz and Bruni, had less luck in the number 91 sister car. A puncture, a drive-through penalty and ongoing misfiring problems relegated the polesitters down the field to sixth place. In the manufacturers’ classification, Porsche retains its lead after round two of the season. In the drivers’ championship, Christensen/Estre have moved into the lead ahead of their works driver colleagues Bruni/Lietz (position 3).
In the GTE-Am category, the Porsche customer team Project 1 celebrated its first podium result of the season. Jeroen Bleekemolen (Netherlands), Ben Keating (USA) and Felipe Fraga (Brazil) achieved third place after a spirited chase in the No. 57 Porsche 911 RSR. The trio had taken up the race from the back of the grid. The No. 56 sister car, driven by Porsche Young Professional Matteo Cairoli (Italy) among others, crossed the finish line in seventh place. The two Porsche 911 RSR fielded by Dempsey-Proton Racing concluded the race on fifth and ninth place. The identical vehicle campaigned by Gulf Racing came eighth.
Round three of the 2019/2020 World Endurance Sports Car Championship will be contested on 10 November in Shanghai (China).
Fritz Enzinger (Vice President Motorsport): “After the one-two success at Silverstone we’ve now finished on the podium at Fuji with our new Porsche 911 RSR. We’re still at the top of the manufacturers’ championship, and a Porsche duo is also leading the driver’s classification. Our balance sheet looks good. We’re now feeling confident and full of excitement for the upcoming race in China.”
Race result GTE-Pro
1. Sörensen/Thiim (DK/DK), Aston Martin Vantage, 211 laps
2. Christensen/Estre (DK/F), Porsche 911 RSR, 210 laps
3. Lynn/Martin (GB/B), Aston Martin Vantage, 210 laps
6. Lietz/Bruni (A/I), Porsche 911 RSR, 208 laps