Lieb and Dumas move on to new challenges for 2017
Two of Porsche's 2016 World Endurance Champions are about to begin a new challenge. From the end of the 2016 season, Romain Dumas and Marc Lieb leave the Porsche Team and their seats in the 900 bhp+ 919 Hybrid prototypes to begin new tasks at Porsche.
Both the French and German racers each have long careers as works drivers. This year, their achievements were crowned by taking the overall win at the Le Mans 24 Hours together and by winning the World Endurance Championship drivers’ title in last weekend in Bahrain. In fact, each driver is a long-distance expert; Dumas (38) has a tally of eight overall victories in international 24-hour races with Porsche, Lieb (36) has six of such successes to his records. And this expertise is secure in the company; both highly accomplished experts remain under contract at Porsche.
Fritz Enzinger, Vice President LMP1, adds: “The LMP1 programme has benefitted immensely from Marc’s and Romain’s experience, especially during the team’s build-up phase and in Le Mans. Together we went through some highs and lows in recent years. I am very pleased that both true racers can conclude this part of their Porsche career as Le Mans winners and world champions. I thank Marc and Romain from the depth of my heart for their high performance driving, their strong commitment and their loyalty.”
At the age of 20, Marc Lieb became a Porsche works driver. Yet despite the many international successes, the family man never relied solely on the sport. The father of two children from Ludwigsburg near Stuttgart enrolled at the Esslingen technical college and earned his degree as an automotive engineer.
“I always imagined that the LMP1 programme would be my last seat as a works driver”, says Lieb, “and I managed to set the course early for my future career outside the cockpit at Porsche. I’m thankful for all the chances and possibilities I got at Porsche for so many years. And I’m especially grateful to my family for supporting me over two decades in racing. This was tough at times and I want to pay back some of it now. To perform the move into international customer racing at Porsche as a Le Mans winner and a world champion, means an incredible amount to me.”
Romain Dumas’ relationship with Porsche also extends beyond his work in the 919 Hybrid cockpit. Porsche works driver since 2003, he also runs his own team entering - and winning with - Porsche cars in rallying and famous Pikes Peak International Hill Climb.
“For me, Porsche is like a family”, says the all-rounder who was born in Alès in Southern France and nowadays lives in Arzier (CH). “I think of many great years with great racing cars. We made history quite a few times, in Spa and at the Nordschleife with the 911 GT3, and obviously in Sebring with the RS Spyder. The last three years with the new Porsche Team in the LMP1 category were at the highest professional level. It has been an incredibly competitive and very technically challenging era. Winning Le Mans 24 Hours with Porsche was a dream come true and I am proud of what we achieved all together since many years. I am a man of challenges and there will be a new one soon.”
Information from Porsche Motorsport