Sebastian Vettel tests the Porsche 963




The Porsche Penske Motorsport Works Team and 53 Formula 1 Grands Prix winner Sebastian Vettel are looking forward to putting the Porsche 963 through its paces. This coming week, German Motorland takes the wheel of the hypercar in Aragon.


Porsche Penske Motorsport is ramping up preparations for this year's 24 Hours of Le Mans with a 36-hour long run in Spain. Vettel has already spent a lot of time in the simulator to prepare for the Spanish circuit in Aragon. At the launch of the Porsche 963 on the test track at Porsche's R&D center in Weissach, he turned his first laps in the hybrid prototype.

Experience in the cockpit of a hypercar prototype

Sebastian Vettel enters new territory with this test drive: for the first time, the four-time Formula 1 world champion will experience the cockpit of a hypercar prototype. From 2023, the Porsche Penske Motorsport Works team and privateer teams campaign the Porsche 963 in the North American IMSA Sports Car Series and the FIA ​​World Endurance Championship WEC. After winning three IMSA races last year, Porsche Penske Motorsport won both championships in the 2024 season. In the WEC, which includes the 24 Hours of Le Mans highlight, the entire field, including the hybrid race car, will run on biofuel. This fuel is used in the WEC from March 2022.

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Porsche 963, Porsche Penske Motorsport (#5), Matt Campbell (AUS), Michael Christensen (DK), Frederic Makowiecki (F), WEC Qatar, 2024, Porsche AG





„I'm looking forward to testing the Porsche 963. I've already had the opportunity to get a feel for the car during a launch in Weißach,” says Sebastian Vettel. „I've always followed other racing series and my passion for endurance events encouraged me to give it a shot. Now I'm excited about the long run in Aragon and I'm looking forward to my time behind the wheel. It's definitely an adjustment and some getting used to but everyone on the team is very open about it. They are helping me. It will be a new experience for me. Let's see what happens next in this regard – no further plans for the future at this time.


Sebastian Vettel, Porsche 963, 2024, Porsche AG





„We are delighted that Sebastian Vettel is interested in our Porsche 963,” explains Thomas Lautenbach, Vice President of Porsche Motorsport. „We have no doubt that we will be happy to support his request for the opportunity to give him extensive preparation and lots of testing time to drive our hybrid prototype – we will no doubt learn a lot from his valuable prototype. Feedback. Our 36 hours with our works drivers at Porsche Penske Motorsport and Motorland Aragón A long run provides the perfect environment for this.

Knowing the special features

Vettel prepares to test with Porsche 963 On March 14, he met with the operations team at the Porsche Penske Motorsport facility in Mannheim. The following day, on March 15, the German completed an extensive simulator session at Porsche Motorsport. There, he got to know the engineers and familiarized himself with the special features and complex control systems of the Le Mans prototype. On March 21, he got his first taste of the Porsche 963 at the in-house test track at the Weissach R&D center. It proved to be an unusual experience for the 36-year-old: after 299 Grand Prix starts in Formula 1 single-seaters, it had been some time since Vettel had driven a racing car with a roof – previously only in the Race of Champions. or turning demo laps.

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Next week, Porsche Penske Motorsport will hold a 36-hour long run around the 5.078-kilometer circuit at Motorland Aragón near Alcaniz. Along with Sebastian Vettel, Matt Campbell (Australia), Michael Christensen (Denmark), Frédéric Makovicky (France) Kevin Estre (France), Andre Lauterer (Germany) and Laurens Vantour (Belgium) are the works drivers. The endurance test serves as preparation for the season highlight at Le Mans on 15/16. June. As the record holder, Porsche aims to defend its 20Th An outright victory at the Circuit des 24 Heures.

To boost its chances of winning at Le Mans, Porsche Penske Motorsport will field a third Veyzac-built hybrid prototype in the French endurance classic in 2024. France's Mathieu Jaminet has already been confirmed to drive the No. 4 car. Customer teams Hertz Team Jota and Proton Competition have entered three more Porsche 963 race cars. Two Porsche 911 GT3 R campaigned by Manthey EMA and Manthey Pure Rxcing will tackle the new LMGT3 category.

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