ALMS: Bernhard/Dumas/Rockenfeller to Pilot Porsche Hybrid

By Auto News Log • August 25th, 2010

Reigning Le Mans winners reunite for car’s North American debut

With an overall victory in the 24 Hours of Le Mans already secured this year, the trio of Timo Bernhard, Romain Dumas and Mike Rockenfeller will make more history this year, this time for Porsche. The trio returns to the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón as teammates in the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid for Petit Le Mans powered by MAZDA2 at Road Atlanta.

The innovative Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid features two electric motors on the front axles, each developing 60 kilowatts to supplement the 480 horsepower normally-aspirated rear-mounted engine.

This year’s Petit Le Mans is scheduled this year for September 29-October 2 at Road Atlanta, 2.54-mile, 12-turn road course roughly one hour northeast of Atlanta. At the 1,000-mile/10-hour race which serves as the finale for the American Le Mans Series season, the Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid will not be eligible for points, as hybrid technology is not yet included in the GT regulations.

“Our priorities are to further develop the hybrid technology and to optimize the fuel consumption under racing conditions. Nevertheless, I’m very interested to see how we compare to the GT2 cars,” says Timo Bernhard.

“Nowhere is the competition in the GT segment as hard as it is here in the USA,” adds Dumas.

As a driver pairing, Bernhard and Dumas have already notched up many historical victories, including the ALMS title in the LMP2 prototype class in 2007 and 2008, the overall win at the 2008 Sebring 12 Hours, as well as three overall victories at the Nürburgring 24 hour race from 2007 to 2009. In January, Rockenfeller claimed victory for Porsche power at the 24 Hours at Daytona.

The Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid, which demonstrated the potential of its groundbreaking technology over the first 22 hours and 15 minutes at this year’s Nürburgring 24 hour race and led the overall classification for more than eight hours, exemplifies the philosophy of “Porsche Intelligent Performance”. Under braking, the 911 GT3 R Hybrid converts kinetic energy into electrical energy and stores it in a flywheel that spins up to 40,000 rpm. During acceleration, this energy is delivered to the front wheels, supporting the combustion engine. This leads to a reduction in fuel consumption, increasing the cruising range and lessens the need for refueling pitstops.

The 911 GT3 R Hybrid race car is one of three different hybrid technologies from Porsche, and joins the Full Parallel Cayenne S Hybrid and the 918 Spyder Plug-In Hybrid concept recently announced for production.

The next round of the 2010 American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón is this weekend’s Mobil 1 presents the Grand Prix of Mosport, set for 3:05 p.m. ET on Sunday, August 29 from Mosport International Raceway in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada. SPEED will air the race in its entirety starting at 4 p.m. ET with live radio coverage available on American Le Mans Radio presented by Porsche – a production of Radio Show Limited – as well as Sirius Channel 127 and XM Channel 242. Americanlemans.com will stream qualifying live starting at 4:15 p.m. ET on Saturday. Visit the Series’ schedule page for ticket and accommodation information. Live Timing and Scoring, track schedule, entry list and much, much more will be available on Racehub at americanlemans.com.

Source: American Le Mans Series

 

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