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Le Mans-winning Porsche to demo at Brands Hatch BTCC finale

Monday, September 18 2017

The British Touring Car Championship season finale on the Brands Hatch Grand Prix circuit on 30 September-1 October will feature a special demonstration of the Le Mans-winning Porsche 919 Hybrid sportscar, with Britain's most recent winner of the famous 24-hour race at the wheel.

Producing over 900-horsepower from the very latest petrol-electric hybrid technology, the Porsche 919 is the latest in a long line of Le Mans winners from the German marque and has won the last three editions of the 24-hour classic since its introduction in 2014. The Formula 1-rivalling machine will be driven at the event by British racer Nick Tandy, who won the first of these in 2015 alongside German Formula 1 star Nico Hulkenburg and New Zealand's Earl Bamber.

It will be the first time a contemporary Le Mans sportscar has appeared at Brands Hatch for two decades and the debut appearance at the circuit of the category's current generation of hybrid-powered race machinery. Joining the 919 on track on the Saturday will be the stunning 887-horsepower 918 hypercar and the latest Panamera Turbo S E-Hybrid luxury saloon, both showcasing the latest in new engine technologies. The 2018-model 911 GT3 Cup race car will join the 919 on the Sunday, and both demonstration runs will take place during the lunch break.

The demonstration runs will also recall Porsche victories in the Brands Hatch long-distance sportscar races from the late 1960s to the 1980s. This included Pedro Rodriguez's legendary virtuoso performance in the wet 1970 1000km race and current circuit owner Jonathan Palmer's victory in 1984 with fellow Grand Prix driver Jan Lammers, which was part of a five-year winning streak for Porsche at the event. Other winners included sportscar legends Jacky Ickx and Derek Bell, whose Le Mans success Tandy is now aiming to emulate.

Tandy also has a strong record at the Kent circuit, having won the prestigious Formula Ford Festival in 2007 as well a round of the British GT Championship in a Trackspeed-entered Porsche 997. He also runs the JTR race team, which will be fighting for the BTCC-supporting Porsche Carrera Cup GB title at the event.

Tandy, who was also in contention for victory at this year's Le Mans said: "Brands Hatch is a circuit where I won in both a 911 GT3 Cup and a 911 GT3-R on my way to becoming a factory driver, and Porsche has a lot of history at the circuit too, so it's very special to be able to demonstrate the 919 Hybrid there. 

"I've raced in front of the BTCC crowd many times and my team, JTR, has been part of the package for many years now. The passion and enthusiasm is always incredible, and hopefully we'll be able to show this impressive piece of engineering to a lot of fans who wouldn't otherwise get to see it."

Ragnar Schulte, Head of Marketing and Motorsport, Porsche Cars Great Britain, added: "When we knew there was an opportunity to bring the 919 Hybrid to Brands Hatch we had to make it happen. Brands Hatch and Porsche have so much history, not least of all from the days when the 956 and 962 were so successful here in Group C. Both those cars represent such a large part of the heritage the 919 Hybrid has had to live up to.

"The 919 Hybrid emphatically stands alongside them in the history of Porsche. For 2018, our 911 will continue to represent the marque in endurance races around the world. It's another reason why it's so fitting the 919 Hybrid comes to Brands Hatch in front of all the fans, with the 2018 911 GT3 Cup looking on and a Carrera Cup GB championship to decide."

Tickets for the BTCC at Brands Hatch on 30 September-1 October are available in advance from £27 with free entry for under-13s. For more information, please call 0843 453 9000 or click here