MacNeil, Curtis and Bleekemolen prepared for 24.
BOLINGBROOK, Illinois. - WeatherTech Racing drivers Cooper MacNeil, Jeroen Bleekemolen and Bret Curtis are ready to take on the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The trio will drive the No. 79 WeatherTech Racing Porsche RSR LMGTAM with ProSpeed Competition. The twice around the clock French classic will run at the Circuit de la Sarthe in Le Mans, France, June 14-15.
The trio of drivers are ready to take on the famous 8.4-mile, 38-turn Circuit de la Sarthe where over 80% of the track is run at full throttle. Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, Ill.), Bret Curtis (Lake Sherwood, Calif.) and Jeroen Bleekemolen (Monte Carlo) know each other well. MacNeil and Bleekemolen combined to win the 2013 American Le Mans Series GTC title. Curtis drove with Bleekemlen several times posting a win at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca in 2012 as well as a second place at Bathurst that same year. He is currently competing full time in the Pirelli World Challenge GT Series. The team is well versed with the Porsche RSR and the demands of Le Mans and are looking forward to being very competitive in the LMGTAM Class.
Cooper MacNeil: "I am really excited to be going back to Le Mans this year with a strong driver line-up and team," MacNeil said. "I am looking forward to driving with The Dutchman again because he is so fast at Le Mans. Bret has experience at Le Mans driving for ProSpeed in an RSR, so I know he will be quick right out of the box. It is very important that all three drivers have Le Mans experience because the race is so challenging. The team showed good speed in the sister car at the test, so I know Jeroen will have a good shot at the pole and I know we will have good race pace. I think we have a really good shot at a podium finish come Sunday. My favorite part of race week is just before the green flag on Saturday. Tensions are high and everyone is anxious. My favorite part of the circuit is the Porsche curves because they are so fast yet every time I drive through them I know I can go faster."
Bret Curtis - Curtis likes the driver line-up and the familiarity of the team... "We have a great combination of experience, youth and success with myself, Jeroen, and Cooper," Curtis said. "Notably, we all have experience driving in multi-class endurance races at a high level and Jeroen in particular is easily one of the best sports car drivers in the world. My personal goals are to race consistently clean laps and keep the car out of the pits to give us our best chance at success in the race. The best sports car fans in the world are a fun part of the whole week, but nothing like the start of the race - then hopefully seeing the finish line on the podium! I really like the section from the Dunlop curves/chicane through Tertre Rouge because of the slight elevation changes and curves that can lead you into a good lap at Le Mans."
Jeroen Bleekemolen - In nine Le Mans starts this will be the first run in a Porsche for Bleekemolen. "We should have a pretty strong line-up," Bleekemolen said. "We all have Le Mans experience. Unfortunately we missed the test, but hopefully we can get up to speed quickly and do well. It's great to run with Cooper and Bret, two drivers I have won races with in the past. My goal is to fight for the podium. We all know Le Mans is a very tough race, so the first aim must be to stay out of trouble. If we can manage that, we should have a shot at the podium. The race itself is my favorite, but I must say the whole Le Mans week is very special. From scrutineering on Monday until the finish on Sunday you feel and see how big this race is around the world. For a racing driver this is the highlight of the season and a privilege to compete at Le Mans. I love the Porsche Curves. I have never actually raced a Porsche at Le Mans, so it's going to be even more special."
The 24 Hours of Le Mans will be televised live, in its entirety, on Fox Sports 1 and Fox Sports 2 starting on Saturday, June 14 at 8:30 a.m. ET.