Petersen/ White Lightning Receives Official Invitation to Defend Le Mans Title LAS VEGAS, Nev., January 21, 2005 -- Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing has received a first-round invitation to compete in the 73rd Annual 24 Heures Du...
Petersen/ White Lightning Receives Official Invitation to Defend Le Mans Title
LAS VEGAS, Nev., January 21, 2005 -- Petersen Motorsports/ White Lightning Racing has received a first-round invitation to compete in the 73rd Annual 24 Heures Du Mans. The Automobile Club De L' Ouest (ACO)- the sanctioning body for the 24 Heures Du Mans- announced an initial list of 15 entries that have been asked to participate in the world's most famous sports car race June 18-19th, 2005. Of the first 15, nine come from the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) and three will challenge for the Le Mans Grand Tourisme Two (LM GT2) class. Petersen/ White Lightning is the defending champion of the last two GT2 contests at the Circuit de la Sarthe and earned their automatic invitation to France as a result of that success. The Michael Petersen-owned team has accepted the invitation and will enter their Westward Ho Casino/ MMPIE/ PAWS/ Michelin Porsche in the event. The Porsche 911 GT3 RSR will be driven by two of the same drivers that piloted the car to its 2004 victory; Jorg Bergmeister (Langenfield, Germany) and Patrick Long (Las Vegas, Nev.). The third driver will be announced at a later date. 2005 marks Petersen/ White Lightning's third trip to Le Mans where they will challenge for a remarkable third-straight victory. Bergmeister will return to defend his '04 title in his fourth appearance, Long in his second.
The 2005 Petersen/ White Lightning Racing effort will get its first opportunity at Le Mans on Sunday, June 5th at the annual pre-qualifying test session held at the 8.3 mile circuit. Bergmeister set the GT2 lap record at the circuit in 2004 "test days" with a time of four minutes, 5.975 seconds in the White Lightning Racing-prepared entry. The team would win the pole position and lead much of the event on its way to victory.
Mike Petersen, owner: "To return to Le Mans is a very big deal to Petersen/ White Lightning. Dale and myself had to work hard on this to make things happen so early. We are looking forward to defending the title in GT2. We have strong support from our sponsors as well as Michelin and Porsche. We are ready for the challenge of this unbelievable race and the experiences that go along with it. We are looking forward to the Le Mans journey to begin in 2005."
Dale White, team manager: "Le Mans is a very important event to us. Our success there the last two years has helped frame who we are as a team. I am proud to accept this invitation from the ACO on behalf of Mike and our entire team. We're looking forward to returning to not only defend our title but to represent the ALMS, Porsche, Michelin and our sponsors on an international stage."
For more, please visit www.petersenmotorsports.com. To learn about Porsche, please visit www.porschecars.com. More on the 24 Hours of Le Mans can be found at www.lemans.org.