- Porsche Performance. Porsche Earns Third In SRO GT Manufacturer Standings.
- 2020 Wright. Ohio Customer Teams Announces Two-Car Program for 2020.
- E-Test. TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team Completes First Official Series Test.
Event Story Lines.
Porsche Performance. Porsche Earns Third In SRO GT Manufacturer Standings.
When the desert dust settled on the 2019 SRO Blancpain GT World Challenge America season at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on October 19, Porsche held third-place in the GT Manufacturer championship. The performance came on the shoulders of the two-car Wright Motorsports effort. Running the full SRO season, the Nos. 58 and 91 Porsche 911 GT3 R customer cars, each carried home third-place trophies in the Team Championships for Pro and Pro-Am respectively. The intense GT3-spec racing covered seven event weekends and 14 rounds of 90-minute, two-driver competition. Porsche earned one race win and 20 total podium finishes.
A veteran Porsche entrant, Wright Motorsports entered two Porsche 911 GT3 R race cars throughout the season with the No. 58 Porsche Consulting machine shared by Porsche factory driver Patrick Long (Manhattan Beach, California) and Porsche Selected Driver Scott Hargrove (Canada). The pairing racked-up the sole Pro class win for the 500-HP Porsche customer machine in Race 2 at California’s Sonoma Raceway. Long and Hargrove, both past champions in the SRO, settled for fifth-place in the Pro Drivers’ championship standings. While their teammates in the No. 91 Henry Repeating Arms sister car did not stand on the top-step of the Pro-Am class podium during the season, Porsche Young Professional Matt Campbell (Australia) and Brooklyn, New York’s Anthony Imperato were able to take the third-place position in the Pro-Am class Team Championship. Adding to the trophy case, Imperato took second-place in the Pro-Am Driver’s Championship. It was the amateur driver’s best career finish in an SRO championship. Porsche customer Alegra Motorsports ran a limited race schedule and added a second-place and third-place finish in the Pro-Pro class for the year.
John Wright, Team Principal, Wright Motorsports.
“Looking back on the season, I’m very proud of the entire Wright Motorsports organization. While things didn’t always fair in our favor, we always brought a competitive package with quick drivers, flawless pit stops and a pair of Porsches capable of winning races. Thank you to the entire team at Wright Motorsports, Porsche Motorsport North America and our partners at Henry Repeating Arms and Porsche Consulting for supporting our efforts. We leave 2019 with our heads held high, prepared to come back stronger in the new season.”
Patrick Long, Driver, No. 58 Porsche Consulting Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.
“Season-wise, I think we have a lot of things to be proud of and a lot of challenges and frustrations to put behind us. I’m grateful for all of our sponsors and partners who have allowed us to do this. We will be back in some capacity in 2020 and be prepared to go for another championship.”
Scott Hargrove, Driver, No. 58 Porsche Consulting Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.
“I think in times like these it’s best to reflect on what a great year it’s been with Wright Motorsports. It’s been a pleasure to race with them and Pat Long this year. There have been a lot of highlights, the largest one being the win at Sonoma. I think I can speak for everyone when I say that we wish there were a few more of those, but at the end of the day that’s racing. Unfortunately, a lot of things happened that were outside of our control this year, but we took it as a team and made the best of it. Thank you to the whole team; I look forward to the future.”
Matt Campbell, Driver, No. 91 Henry Repeating Arms Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.
“It was a very frustrating end to the year after we showed great pace. Luck just wasn’t on our side today, or the entire year actually, with a lot of factors outside of our control hindering our weekend.”
Anthony Imperato, Driver, No. 91 Henry Repeating Arms Wright Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.
“This was definitely not the weekend we wanted. I’m very disappointed in some of the decisions that were made, but proud of the Wright Motorsports team’s effort. The team gave us a great car and excellent pit stops, but it’s a shame that they couldn’t have been rewarded for it. I’m looking forward to 2020.”
2020 Wright. Ohio Customer Teams Announces Two-Car Program for 2020.
Wright Motorsports will campaign two Porsche 911 GT3 R race cars in North American competition for the 2020 season. The two-car program will see new partners, 1st Phorm and Mountain Motorsports coming to the professional sports car racing team with Ryan Hardwick (Atlanta, Georgia) and the return of Henry Repeating Arms with Wright Motorsports regular, Anthony Imperato (Brooklyn, New York).
Though new to Porsche race cars, Hardwick has amassed an exceptional amount of experience in his short sports car racing career. He has earned SRO and Lamborghini Super Trofeo World Championships. In 2019, he campaigned the first five IMSA WeatherTech Championship events, earning a podium at Mid-Ohio SportsCar Course, before having to sit out the remainder of the season due to injury. An intensive rehabilitation effort has him cleared for full competition.
The 2020 season will also see the return of Henry Repeating Arms and Anthony Imperato for their fifth consecutive year racing Porsches under the Wright Motorsports banner. After three years of success in the IMSA Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama, Imperato has climbed the Porsche Motorsport Pyramid into GT3 competition with a Porsche 911 GT3 R. In 2019, Imperato enjoyed success, including multiple podiums, campaigning in the full SRO America Championship and select IMSA WeatherTech Championship rounds paired with Porsche Young Professionals, Matt Campbell (Australia) and Dennis Olsen (Norway).
Preparations for the upcoming season are already in full effect at the Batavia, Ohio shop. While options are still being evaluated between platforms, the team anticipates additional news including driver lineups at a later date.
Dr. Daniel Armbruster, President and CEO, Porsche Motorsport North America.
“John Wright and Wright Motorsports have been longtime members of the Porsche family. Through the team’s performance and professional approach, Wright Motorsports has become a true representative of the Porsche brand and has been an entry point for many into the Porsche way of racing. We are very pleased to see Ryan Hardwick join Wright and Porsche for the 2020 race season. Having competed against Ryan on the track, we look forward to him racing the Porsche 911 GT3 R rather than against it. We believe this will be a great combination of driver, team and manufacturer.”
John Wright, Team Principal, Wright Motorsports.
“I’m very pleased to welcome 1st Phorm, Mountain Motorsports and their driver, Ryan Hardwick to the Wright Motorsports team for 2020, along with the continuation of our partnership with Henry Repeating Arms and their driver, Anthony Imperato. Securing the new partnerships so early in the game allows us to focus on early preparations for the 2020 season. Having the support of world class companies like these, along with longstanding partnerships like Porsche Motorsport North America, says that we are here to win races. We’re eager to come back strong with the Porsche 911 GT3 R.”
Ryan Hardwick, Driver, 1st Phorm/Mountain Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R.
“I’m very excited to be joining Wright Motorsports for the 2020 season. I connected with John Wright back in 2016, when I first entered car racing. I was looking into going the Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge route and really had a great experience speaking with him at the time. I was really impressed with John, how he runs his organization and the amount of effort that he personally puts into all of his programs. I’m a massive Porsche enthusiast and collector. My father was a big Porsche fan, so I grew up idolizing the brand. To be able to race one at this level is a dream come true and I know that partnering with Wright Motorsports will make this an exceptionally competitive program.”
Anthony Imperato, Driver, Henry Rifles Porsche 911 GT3 R.
“I am very excited for myself and Henry Repeating Arms to be joining Wright Motorsports for a fifth year. We’ve made a lot of progress as a team with the Porsche 911 GT3R in this past year of both Blancpain GT World Challenge America and IMSA WeatherTech Championship competition and I’m eager to continue building off of that in what I already know will be a very competitive 2020 season.”
E-Test. TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team Completes First Official Series Test.
The TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team completed three days of intensive testing at the Circuit Ricardo Tormo near Valencia, Spain. The “works” team and its two regular drivers, Neel Jani (Switzerland) and André Lotterer (Germany), gained valuable experience running for the first time on track with all teams competing in Season Six of the ABB FIA Formula E Championship. The data gathered will be analyzed at Porsche Motorsport in Weissach, Germany in the weeks leading up to the start of the season. The first two races for the TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team – the Diriyah E-Prix on the outskirts of Riyadh, Saudi Arabia – take place on November 22 – 23.
The official Formula E test at Valencia consisted of testing car set-ups and simulations for both qualifying and racing. The tests presented the first opportunity to test and optimize the operational processes with both Porsche 99X Electric cars at a race track. In total, Jani completed 119 laps (roughly 229 miles) of the Circuit Ricardo Tormo. Lotterer was on track for 154 laps (296 miles).
Pascal Zurlinden, Director Factory Motorsport.
“This was the first time we have gone up against all the other teams, and the first time our complete works team has been able to rehearse race procedures with two cars. A couple of minor incidents meant our first two days were a little shorter. As such, we had to adapt the program a little and make a few compromises. Friday went really well. We were able to complete the full program. For us, it was very important this week to learn how to cope with other cars on the track on a race weekend. As such, the two race simulations were particularly informative. We will now take our homework away with us and make sure we are ready for our Formula E debut in Riyadh, which we are very much looking forward to.”
Neel Jani, Driver, TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team Porsche 99X Electric.
“We once again learned something with every lap and found a lot of solutions. At the same time, however, we were confronted with a few new questions. It is a very intensive learning process for us. The race simulations were very interesting and helpful for us. Ultimately, however, we are still not where we want to be in the end – at this circuit, at least. Despite this, we have made progress and are confident that we will learn from this ahead of our first race in Riyadh.”
André Lotterer, Driver, TAG Heuer Porsche Formula E Team Porsche 99X Electric.
“We did quite a lot of driving on day one. It went well, but we discovered a few outstanding issues on the car where there is still room for improvement. Unfortunately, we lost time on the track on day two, as I hit the wall in the chicane and it took a while to repair the car. That meant I was unable to take part in the race simulation, but I caught up on that on day three. All in all, we focused very hard on our program and did not just concentrate on lap times, as we consciously invested a lot of work in different car set-ups, to sort out as many things as possible and travel to Riyadh as well prepared as possible.”
Porsche GT Team (North America). @PorscheNARacing
Porsche Motorsport – GT Cars. @PorscheRaces
Porsche Racing. @PorscheTeam
Porsche Motorsport North America. @PorscheMotorsportNorthAmerica (Instagram)
Porsche Formula E. @PorscheFormulaE (Twitter)
@porsche.formulae (Instagram) Porsche Newsroom. @PorscheNewsroom (Twitter)
Porsche 99X Electric. #99Xelectric
Porsche 911 RSR. #911RSR
Porsche 911 GT3 R. #911GT3R
Porsche 911 GT3 Cup. #911Cup
Porsche 718 Cayman GT4 Clubsport. #GT4Clubsport
Porsche 935. #Porsche935
Porsche 911 GT2 RS Clubsport. #GT2RSClubsport
Series Hashtags and Handles.
GT3 Cup Challenge USA. #GT3USA
GT3 Cup Challenge Canada. #GT3Canada
Pirelli Trophy West USA. @PirelliTrophy (Twitter)
@PirelliTrophyWestUSA (Instagram) IMSA @IMSA
SRO America @SROAmerica
Blancpain GT World Challenge America. #GTWorldCh
SRO GT4 America #GT4America
FIA World Endurance Championship. @FIAWEC
Intercontinental GT Challenge. @IntercontGTC
FIA ABB Formula E Championship. @FIAFormulaE