Nick Tandy to race Porsche 919 Hybrid at Le Mans
After today’s official confirmation by the ACO that Porsche have gained three LMP1 entries to this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans, Weissach has announced factory GT drivers, Nick Tandy and Earl Bamber as drivers of the third Porsche 919 Hybrid entry.
Tandy, the 2014 24 Hours of Daytona GTLM winner and 2011 Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland, was invited to test the 919 Hybrid at Aragon in the latter part of last year after Porsche began trialling its 911 RSR drivers for the step up to LMP1.
The Briton, a regular columnist for Total 911, impressed enough in Spain to be invited back for further test outings at Aragon in December and Abu Dhabi last month.
Force India F1 star, Nico Hulkenberg and Tandy will be joined in the third Porsche 919 Hybrid LMP1 car by the latter’s fellow Porsche GT star, Earl Bamber – the reigning Porsche Supercup champion.
Like Tandy, Bamber’s rise through the Porsche ranks has been stratospheric. After triumphing in the 2013 Carrera Cup Asia, the Kiwi racer was granted the 2014 International Cup Scholarship prize, winning the Porsche Supercup at his first attempt.
Substituting for the injured Richard Lietz, Bamber put in a star showing at last year’s Petit Le Mans, leading to a full-time role the Tudor USCC at the wheel of a Porsche 911 RSR this season.
Bamber was also invited to test the 919 Hybrid at Abu Dhabi where his performance was reportedly impressive, leading to his promotion, alongside Tandy, to the third Porsche 919 Hybrid in 2015.
As well as the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Tandy, Bamber and Hulkenberg will contest the FIA WEC Six Hours of Spa in May as a warm up event ahead of the famous French endurance race in June.
Look out for more on Nick Tandy’s 919 Hybrid drive in the Porsche ace’s regular column, next out in issue 124, on sale 3 March.