End of the year came, new LMGTE regulations were approved for the 2016 season and even some cars were presented and are already testing, like the Ferrari 488 GTE, the Ford GT and the new versions of the Aston Martin V8 Vantage GTE and Corvette C7R GTE. But then you imagine “What’s up, Porsche?”, and the reality is that they will be a bit out of the GTE-Pro scenario, as their new LMGTE machine will be out only in 2017. But they will be back in 2016, that’s for sure.
While the factory squad will be temporarily out testing their new beast and Manthey Racing is reportedly out of the FIA World Endurance Championship game, another well-known team will take the responsability to put the 911 RSR on par with the new cars, which is Proton Competition. The fact is that during the Porsche’s absence of the GTE-Pro competition, the car that ran under the Dempsey-Proton name will be pushed ahead to the big boys GT class, at least for 2016.
The Dempsey-Proton car will feature the current GTE-Pro champion Richard Lietz alongside Danish driver Michael Christensen, who even was one of the candidates tested in the Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 model. And while the full season WEC effort will be a lone contender, Porsche North America will boost the entries for the Stuttgart-based manufacturer during the 24 Hours of Le Mans with another two cars. The other Proton machine used in 2015 will stay in the GTE-Am class, although it’s still not known who will be the drivers in it or if it will retain the Abu Dhabi backing to the 2016 season.
Another shocking news from the Proton camp is that actor/racer Patrick Dempsey will stay out of full time competition next year, but as it was told that he will stay as a partner of the team, it is expected that he will drive in some races of the calendar.
PHOTO: FIA WEC