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Monday, June 13, 2022

Porsche Takes Class Win At 24 Hours Of Le Mans


Porsche has won the GTE Pro class at the 2022 edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. This marks the 109th class win for Porsche in the legendary endurance race.

Factory works drivers Gianmaria Bruni, Richard Lietz, and Frederic Makowiecki, sharing the wheel of the No. 91 Porsche 911 RSR, set a new distance record for the GTE class. The trio covered 4,769 kilometers, or over 350 laps, on their way to a commanding victory as they crossed the finish line 42.684 seconds ahead of the second-place Ferrari entry.

In the Porsche team’s sister car, Kevin Estre, Michael Christensen, and Laurens Vanthoor narrowly missed the podium at the 90th edition of the long-distance classic.

The 24 Hours of Le Mans took off on June 11 amid a record crowd, bright sunshine and track temperatures reaching up to 40 degrees Celsius. The two Porsche 911 RSR cars initially moved into positions three and four, and remained within striking distance of the leader. The critical hours began as the sun dipped below the horizon. In cooler temperatures, the two racers managed to make the best use of their tires over large stretches to progress through the field.

The winning Number 91 Porsche 911 RSR then covered the distance without further incident and outwitted their competitors’ strategies on the way to a class victory.

Meanwhile, the Number 92 Porsche 911 RSR was plagued by misfortune. Estre, Christensen, and Vanthoor put in a strong drive through the night to take the lead. By sunrise, the trio — also the 2018 Le Mans class winners — had eked out a lead of more than two minutes. On Sunday morning, the front right tire blew out and damaged a large section of their car’s front. Due to the slow drive back to the pits and repairs that took 10 minutes, the team lost three laps. The team ultimately crossed the finish line in fourth place.

In the GTE Am class, five Porsche 911 RSR were candidates for victory. But only one team managed to survive the grueling 24-hour race without major setbacks. The No. 79 entry from WeatherTech Racing driven by Julien Andlauer, Cooper MacNeil, and Thomas Merrill, turned in 343 laps to claim second place. GR Racing’s No. 86 car achieved fourth place while the Dempsey-Proton Racing team entry took the flag in fifth place.

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