11-30-1998, 06:35 AM
Pretty shocking news from Porsche. There may be a privately run team but I doubt it. I'm sure there will be plenty of Gt2 based 911's but no "big guns". Shame.<p>--------------------------------------------------<br>PORSCHE PULLS OUT OF MOTORSPORT<br>Porsche is withdrawing from international motorsport for 1999, saying it is concerned about the stability of rules and escalating costs in international sportscar racing. <p>Its poor showing in the 1998 FIA GT championship has almost certainly have contributed to the decision, and Weissach is also concerned that 1999 Le Mans regulations will favour open sportscar racing cars over GTs.<p>The German manufacturer won the Le Mans 24 Hours for the 16th time this year, but failed to win a single 1998 FIA race with its 911 GT1 car as Mercedes swept the board. It has abandoned all 1999 plans, including the new American Le Mans series, and has yet to decide whether to return in 2000. <p>Porsche's departure could fatally wound the FIA GT championship, which currently has only one manufacturer - Mercedes, the 1997 and 1998 champion - confirmed for next year's high-technology global GT1-only series. Without Porsche, the series is likely to be cancelled.<p>"The board of Porsche AG is seeking a future-oriented, long-term motorsport policy," said a company spokesman. "Stability of regulations and limitation of expenditure is all the more important as Porsche also supports customer teams, and cannot accept any inflationary use of materials and resources."<p>But Porsche development director Horst Marchart was more direct at Saturday night's Porsche Cup gala in Stuttgart: "we need to take a year off to breathe and to regain our confidence."<p>Porsche was one of the founders of the World Endurance Championship in 1982, and returned to GT racing in 1996, racing cars identifiable with its production models. But the factory is concerned that new Le Mans regulations will now favour open sports prototype cars . <p>"Although we plan to return to Le Mans in the year 2000, a final decision on the company's participation in these racing activities will not be taken until a later date." added the spokesman.<p>The move will leave factory drivers such as Scotland's Allan McNish - who drove to his first Le Mans victory this year - France's Yannick Dalmas and Germans Joerg Mueller and Uwe Alzen looking for other seats next year.<p>Porsche successes since 1963 have been impressive, both with factory and customer teams: <br>Le Mans 24 Hours: 1970-1971-1976-1977-1979-1981-1982-1983-1984-1985-1986-1987-1994-1996-1997-1998. <p>World Sportscar Championship: 1963-1969-1970-1971-1976-1978-1979-1982-1983-1984-1985-1986<p>
11-30-1998, 08:29 AM
Porsche Redefines its Motorsport Policy <p>Porsche not Entering Le Mans 1999 <p>Stuttgart. Dr. Ing. h. c. F. Porsche AG, Stuttgart, has redefined its motorsport activities for the next millennium. As a result, there will be no Porsche works team in 1999 at the 24 Hours of Le Mans or in the FIA GT Series. The Porsche Motorsport Team will not enter the new American Le Mans Series in the USA in 1999, either. Porsche then plans to return to Le Mans in the year 2000 and also intends to enter the American Le Mans Series. But the final decision on the Company's participation in these racing activities will not be taken until a later date.<p>The decisions made by the Board of Porsche AG seek above all to ensure a future-oriented, long-term motorsport policy. A further point is that all of Porsche's racing activities will be checked regularly in future for the dependability of rules and regulations in order to keep costs within reasonable limits. Such limitation of expenditure is all the more important as Porsche always intends to enter motorsport events also with customer teams and therefore cannot accept any inflationary use of materials and resources.<p>Porsche's engineers believe that the new regulations for Le Mans will give open sports cars a greater potential than a GT for an overall win in this classic 24-hour event. In recent times Porsche has however concentrated consistently on GT cars linked directly to the Company's production models.<p>Porsche has consistently remained one of the pacemakers in motorsport over many years and has actively supported new racing series and activities. Porsche AG was one of the co-founders of the World Endurance Championship in 1982 and the Porsche works team entered the BPR Series in 1996, thus paving the way for the FIA GT Series as the next championship to follow, with a Porsche works team entering the FIA GT Championship from the very first race.<p>With a total of 16 overall wins in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Porsche sports cars hold the unchallenged record. Since 1994 alone, the winning car has been a Porsche no less than four times.<p><br>GO/28 November 1998<br>No 133/98<p><p><p>
12-01-1998, 01:17 AM
On the rec.autos.simulators newsgroup there have been a lot of talk about Bernie Eccolstone having way TOO much power in the FIA circles, so much so that in fact he forced a GT series to be shut down! So perhaps Porsche is pulling out in anger against good ol Bernie and his bull**** rules, thus creating a sort of confrontation. Kinda either you change the rules ol chap, or we don't race in your events, and thus there IS no real racing under you.
12-01-1998, 07:39 PM
Could be Mike. I've read lots of different ideas on what was behind all this. Personally, I think it's as Porsche has said. Not a lot of stability in any series (on any continent) or in any rules. You can imagine the bucks that Porsche puts behind a GT1 effort. Not sure they're getting that much for their investment now that the new 911 is out and frankly, MB pounded them this past year so that didn't help.<p>Got a different perspective on this during the past two days. Had some indirect conversation with folks that have campaigned a GT1 Porsche in the US. They're optimistic and darn excited about the possibility of running a GT1 car in Amercian LeMans. Apparently, there's still some good support promised from Porsche .. maybe they'll get the "good stuff" now.<p>It'll be interesting to see what kind of press and media following comes from the Audi R8 -- may not let Porsche rest on their laurels too long!<p>Lot's to see! Stay tuned.
12-05-1998, 09:04 PM
Phil, there is a GOOD article in the latest Euro Car mag on this topic. As you hinted at, MB handed Porsche their heads on a platter all this year! So perhaps they are kinda messed up about that, and the fact that they put MORE money into their racing than they were taking IN as proffit! Also Toyota and Nissan were right up their arse at LeMans too (till they failed along with the MB, thus giving Porsche the ONLY bright spot of the year). So they might want to concentrate on just one project now.