As brand celebrates 75th anniversary
Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific Selected Driver Yifei Ye to compete in Hertz Team JOTA #38 Porsche 963
Porsche Penske Motorsport to enter three Porsche 963 cars sporting colourful new livery
00th anniversary running of the famous enduro coincides with Porsche’s 75 years celebrations
Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific Selected Driver Yifei Ye is getting set for this weekend’s 100th anniversary running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, targeting a strong performance in the #38 Hertz Team JOTA Porsche 963.
The 2023 event will be the third time the Chinese driver has taken on the world’s most famous endurance race, and his first in the Hypercar category. Ye became the youngest driver in the FIA World Endurance Championship’s (WEC) top class at the 6 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps in April, and impressed many with a strong stint during the race, where he set the fastest lap time of any Porsche 963 driver.
Wearing a Le Mans-inspired helmet that will be auctioned for charity after the event, the 22-year-old will take to the Circuit de la Sarthe alongside WEC teammates António Félix Da Costa and Will Stevens in one of four Porsche LMDh cars. The factory team, Porsche Penske Motorsport, will enter the other three, meaning the marque is the most well-represented in the category.
Porsche has an illustrious history and strong pedigree at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, racing at every event since 1951. The brand also has the most overall victories, with 19, in addition to more than 100 class triumphs. 2023 marks 75 years of Porsche, along with the manufacturer’s much-anticipated return to the top class. Porsche Penske Motorsport’s trio of Porsche 963 cars will take on the legendary enduro sporting a striking new livery. Stripes of seven different colours, all inspired by legendary Porsche cars, work their way from the front of the car and around the sides to the back, creating a design that is certain to stand out on track. Meanwhile, eight Porsche 911 RSR entries will go for LMGTE-Am glory, with former Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific Selected Driver Alessio Picariello competing in the #60 Iron Lynx effort.
The 13.626-kilometre track, instantly recognisable to motorsport fans across the world, is rooted into the history of endurance racing as one of the sport’s most revered destinations. Long straights and heavy braking zones combine with corners such as Tertre Rouge, Mulsanne, Indianapolis, Arnage and the Porsche Curves to produce a layout that challenges every aspect of driver and car. Another landmark of the area is the Porsche Experience Center Le Mans which, like the Porsche Experience Centre Shanghai, offers enthusiasts a unique chance to get to grips with a selection of Porsche vehicles.
Yifei Ye, #38 Hertz Team JOTA Porche 963: “I’m really motivated to be taking on the 100th anniversary running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It’s always been a special place for me, I spent my teenage school years here and made my first steps into car racing while living in the area. Also, from the sporting point of view, I’ve always loved the track and had a great feeling when driving on it. I’m excited to be competing with Hertz Team JOTA this year in a Porsche 963. The car was incredible to experience at Spa and we made amazing progress, finishing the race without any issues and setting good pace throughout. It’s always a tough event and the competition is very strong, but I’ve got two great teammates in António and Will, plus an excellent crew behind us, so we’re feeling confident and positive. It’s also special for me to be the first Chinese driver to compete in the Hypercar category at Le Mans, along with being the youngest driver in the class. I can’t wait for the race to begin and to attempt to achieve my dream as the first Chinese winner in the 24 Hours of Le Mans!”
Alexandre Gibot, Managing Director Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific Ltd.: “We’ve all been looking forward to this event and it’s finally about to begin. The 24 Hours of Le Mans is special in so many ways, and this year even more so, with Porsche celebrating our 75th anniversary and Porsche Motorsport Asia Pacific Selected Driver Yifei Ye competing in the Hypercar class in a Porsche 963. Porsche is returning to the top class and is the best-represented marque in the category for the 100th anniversary running of this incredible event. We are all looking forward to the week ahead and can’t wait to support Yifei as he chases his dream of becoming the first Chinese overall winner at the 24 Hours of Le Mans."