• Tim Fullbrook

Porsche kick-start the LMDh era with Weissach shakedown

Fred Makowiecki took first honours of driving an LMDh machine.

Porsche have kick-started the LMDh era with an initial shakedown run of their Multimatic-chassised machine at their Weissach test track.

The initial running was completed by five-time WEC race winner and long-serving Porsche factory driver Fred Makowiecki, who goes down in the sportscar record books as the first man to drive an LMDh car. On Friday evening a 25 second video posted by Porsche Motorsports' on Twitter has allowed the eager motorsport audience to lock eyes on a car built to the WEC-IMSA collaborated ruleset for the first time. With only teaser images and concept art being the closest we've come to seeing one of these cars before Friday.

Porsche were scheduled to have run testing pre-Christmas, with many expecting driver announcements to coincide with the first roll-outs. However this delay to early January may potentially see a knock-on affect on other testing dates for the yet-to-be-named racecar.

Thomas Laudenbach, Vice President Motorsport: "We are very proud of this important step in the development process of our new WEC/IMSA contender for 2023. Thanks to everybody involved in Weissach and at

Team Penske."

"My first thought went to all the people who worked so many months to get the Porsche LMDh on the ground", said factory driver Makowiecki, "It is very emotional moment to be allowed to represent them.“

"To be honest, it was a very positive roll-out. We could do some laps and discovered that the car is working as expected. Now we have a good starting point to go forward.“

It is understood the car was running without the spec-hybrid system which will be developed by Bosch (Hybrid motor), Williams Advanced Engineering (Battery) and Xtrac (gearbox).

Porsche and Penske will make their return to top-flight endurance racing in 2023, as part of the debuting LMDh category at the 61st Rolex 24 at Daytona.

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