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Porsche motorsport department: 911 forms the motorsport skeleton

Porsche motorsport department in Weissach
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L Affirmations are not the thing of Porsche sports director Hartmut Kristen . When he talks about the close connection between series production cars and the company's sporting activities, there is emphasis in his voice: 'The philosophy of the interaction between series development and motorsport is a very topical issue for us, both emotionally and practically. The idea behind it is simple : A sports car should contain as many racing genes as possible. '

Racing is in the Porsche 911

According to Kristen, the Porsche icon 911, which carries the customer sports system of the motorsport department, lives from the permanent fertilization through racing. 'Racing is in the car and in the engineers. And, by the way, in our customers too!' It is less about adopting racing parts one-to-one in production cars. 'Through racing, we learn to understand processes and new technologies better - and these results then also flow into series development.'

Hybrid Porsche 911 for the 24h race on the Nürburgring

A nice example is the Hybrid-Porsche 911 for the 24h race on the Nürburgring , which as it were as a rolling Test center is used for a promising technology or, in the words of the sports director, 'should create a link between today and tomorrow'. The near-series motorsport at Porsche is based on the 911, and so it is not surprising that the special models 911 GT3 and GT3 RS as well as the turbo-fueled GT2 are developed in the motorsport department, naturally with the involvement of engineers from the series business. 'The close interlinking makes sense because these vehicles also serve as the basis for homologation for motorsport,' said Kristen.

The racing activities with the Porsche 911 model shine through impressive diversity, as the motorsport pyramid of the racing department shows at a glance: 'The basis of this pyramid is the Porsche sports driver school and all of our customers who drive their road vehicles for example, are on the racetrack as part of track days, 'explains Hartmut Kristen. On the second level are the so-called club sport events, then come thethoroughbred one-make cups (GT3 Cup Challenge; national Carrera Cups, Supercup as part of Formula 1) with the Porsche 911 GT3 Cup, of which a total of over 1,500 have already been delivered. In addition to the Supercup, Porsche organizes 13 national Carrera Cups. The last stage of 911-based racing are the heavily modified GT cars (GT3, GT2) for national and international sports car racing. 'Up to this point we usually talk about customer racing,' said Kristen.

Porsche uses its pyramid system to promote young talent

The top level then consists of engagements in prototype sports such as the LMP2 car RS Spyder, which was successful in the ALMS, or engagement in Grandam series. Incidentally, Porsche also consistently uses its pyramid system to promote young talent: the squad of works drivers have been trained in this system and prepared for use in higher motor sport classes. The motorsport department is working to full capacity with this workload: In 2009, believe it or not, 240 Porsche 911 GT3 Cups left the halls, with the cup cars being built in close cooperation with series production in Zuffenhausen. The GT racing cars are built exclusively in Weissach, there were a good 20 of them in 2009.

The racing department is also able to cope with the rush for its products because its buildings were completely renovated between 2005 and 2007 and adapted to modern requirements . A good 160 employees work at Porsche Motorsport, including over 50 engineers in the development department and another 60 employees in the workshop department. 'These are all highly motivated employees with enormous know-how,' says Hartmut Kristen emphatically. 'But above all, they are all racers!'


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