In the second year of their return to top level of endurance racing, Porsche have secured their 17th victory at Le Mans, in the 83rd edition of of the iconic 24 hour race.
Nick Tandy, Earl Bamber and current Force India driver Nico Hulkenberg took victory in the No.19 Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 whilst the sister machine of the No.17 car, crewed by Brendon Hartley, Timo Bernhard and Mark Webber finished in second place to give the legendary German sportscar team a one-two finish to this years race. The No.18 Porsche of Neel Jani, Marc Lieb and Romain Dumas finished in fifth place. Adding to this historic win is the fact that this is the team’s first win since 1998 when Allan McNish, Stephane Ortelli and Laurent Aiello took the spoils in another one-two finish.
Andreas Seidl, Team Principal was overjoyed with the team’s first 24 Hours of Le Mans victory since returning to Prototype racing last year:
“It is hard to find words because it is just so difficult to believe we have done that. It is a fantastic reward for the tough work the team did here on the race track and back home in Weissach over the last three and a half years. We knew we were a lot better prepared than last year, but no way could we expect this result. We didn’t benefit from any situations, but were on a winning level in every regard – be it the mechanics in the garage or the engineers doing the strategy. The pit stops were outstanding. The drivers were sensational. Congratulations to the three winning guys.”
Earl Bamber expressed his happiness with his first LMP1 Le Mans victory: “It feels incredible. I have enjoyed every single stint. It is been a long, long day to drive in the evening and then again in the morning. I just had a very short break. But I am not tired at all – I am pumped up on adrenalin now. I thought I would have heard strange noises in the car. But, of course, you fancy every kind of noise if you are on your way to win Le Mans.”
Nico Hulkenburg explained his enjoyment behind winning Le Mans at his first attempt: “I enjoyed every moment, these cars are great fun to drive and then to be on a huge track like this one. The pace was really high, and not what you would expect from endurance racing. Especially at night when the temperatures came down a bit, the car was fantastic to drive. Of course, I didn’t think I would come here and rock ’n’ roll this race, this would be silly because there are so many challenges in that race. However, we did it and we did it together.”
However, Nick Tandy summed up the victory nicely: “This is such a fantastic day. It is hard to get it to sink in that I’m now a Le Mans winner with Porsche.”