Porsche Pre-Belle Isle Report

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Porsche’s newest GT3 car, the 911 GT3 R, will have its opportunity to shine a little brighter on June 4. Round Four of the IMSA GT Daytona (GTD) class will see the more street-oriented cars join the Prototypes as the only GT-based cars entered. The more factory-focused GT Le Mans (GTLM) class, which includes the Porsche 911 RSR, will not compete on Detroit’s Belle Isle temporary street course.

Leading the charge for the German marque will be the No. 23 Team Seattle/ Alex Job Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R driven by Mario Farnbacher (Germany) and Alex Riberas (Spain). The pairing won the last GTD class race, held at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, in early May. The victory was the first official endurance-style victory for the 911 GT3 R. Alex Job Racing also brings the No. 22 WeatherTech 911 GT3 R for drivers Cooper MacNeil (Hinsdale, Illinois) and Leh Keen (Atlanta, Georgia). The No. 73 Park Place Motorsports Porsche 911 GT3 R of Patrick Lindsey (Santa Barbara, California) and Porsche factory driver Jörg Bergmeister (Germany) will compete on the island circuit with Bergmeister being the only “works” driver on hand in Detroit this weekend. The No. 540 Black Swan Racing 911 GT3 R sees Tim Pappas (Boston, Mass.) and Nicky Catsburg (Netherlands). Black Swan captured the car’s inaugural podium at the Rolex 24 At Daytona.

Mario Farnbacher, Driver, No. 23 Team Seattle/ Alex Job Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R. 

“The whole team is excited to go back to the street race in Detroit. Usually a rear engine car should be an advantage at slower tracks with tight turns. With the improved downforce of the new Porsche GT3R and overall good balance that will help as well. I have positive thoughts heading into the race. Our main focus is long term and getting the maximum number of points per race. However, another win and being on the podium in Detroit for a third time would be cool too.”

Alex Riberas, Driver, No. 23 Team Seattle/ Alex Job Racing Porsche 911 GT3 R. 

“Mario, Ian and the team have a lot of data on the Detroit circuit. I have driven in the Porsche Cup series in Monaco, so I am familiar with street races. I have also been looking at in-car video of the circuit. We have limited on track running, so I will walk the track a couple of times and be ready to go. The Heart of Racing team won there last year and we are coming off of a win at Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca, so two in a row would be great!”