PORSCHE FIELDS TEN FACTORY DRIVERS FOR 2009 SEASON - FIVE TO RACE IN U.S.
ATLANTA - January 15 -- The driver line-up for Dr. Ing. h.c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, is now complete. A total of ten works drivers will contest various sports car and GT series around the world in the 2009 season, with five factory drivers having season-long assignments in the United States.
As in the past years, the Porsche factory drivers support teams in top class championships as well as long distance races and are also involved in the further development of racing vehicles.
In the American Le Mans Series (ALMS), Joerg Bergmeister (Germany) and Patrick Long (USA) belong to the favorites in the GT2 class with the Porsche GT3 RSR of the Flying Lizard Motorsports team. Long remains the only American Porsche factory driver. Wolf Henzler (Germany), as well, is keen to wrap up the ALMS title for the Farnbacher-Loles Racing outfit.
In a Porsche-powered Daytona Prototype, Timo Bernhard (Germany) and Romain Dumas (France) hunt for points for the Penske Racing team in the Rolex Grand-Am Sports Car series. The season schedule for Sascha Maassen (Germany) has yet to be finalized. However, Maassen, along with most of the factory drivers, will participate with customer teams in the upcoming Rolex 24 Hours at Daytona January 24 - 25.
Marc Lieb (Germany) and Richard Lietz (Austria) will form a strong pairing for the Proton team in the 2009 Le Mans Series (LMS). The two share the cockpit of a Porsche 911 GT3 RSR. Patrick Pilet from France will also contest the LMS piloting a GT3 RSR of the IMSA Performance team. Emmanuel Collard (France) joins forces with the Penders squad in the FIA GT championship.
The executive who contracts the drivers, Porsche head of motorsport, Hartmut Kristen, placed emphasis on continuity.
"I'm very pleased that I can count on ten world class pilots in the 2009 season. They have all competed for Porsche for at least a year and I know the strengths of every single one of them. In addition to the core series that we've chosen for our drivers, some of them will also contest other individual events," said Kristen.
The Porsche works drivers (with date of birth):
Joerg Bergmeister (Germany), 13 February 1976
Timo Bernhard (Germany), 24 February 1981
Emmanuel Collard (France), 3 April 1971
Romain Dumas (France), 14 December 1977
Wolf Henzler (Germany), 5 April 1975
Marc Lieb (Germany), 4 July 1980
Richard Lietz (Austria) 17 December 1983
Patrick Long (USA), 28 July 1981
Sascha Maassen (Germany), 28 September 1969
Patrick Pilet (France), 8 October 1981