David Heinemeier Hansson and Porsche Napleton Racing Ready to Launch First IMSA GT3 Cup Season
SEBRING, March 15, 2011: David Heinemeier Hansson and his Porsche Napleton Racing (PNR) teammates will launch their inaugural season of competition in the competitive IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge by Yokohama this week at Sebring International Raceway where the first-year effort will begin a bid for the 2011 Platinum Cup class championship while gaining valuable racing experience in the No. 37 PNR/37signals Porsche GT3.
"The primary motivation for the year is to get more experience and prepare myself for the next step into ALMS and some of the famous endurance races around the world,” Hansson said. “That said, I'll be driving to win."
Hansson and PNR moved off to a solid start during 2011 Winter Test at Sebring International Raceway last month where the No. 37 Porsche was among the top performers. Hansson also scored an impressive Gold Cup class victory in his GT3 Cup debut last October during Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta in a one-off ride with AASCO Motorsports. He is looking forward to even better competition this weekend.
"I'm really excited about the 40-car field we're going to be competing against at Sebring,” Hansson said. “I love the rush of passing, so the more action, the better. This feels like a great and natural next step towards the dream of doing Le Mans 24 hours."
A native of Denmark who now lives in Chicago, Hansson made his racing debut in 2007 in Formula Mazda competition. He also has extensive and winning experience in club and amateur events at Autobahn Country Club, his home track, and has been a regular competitor in the Cayman Interseries since 2009. His Road Atlanta GT3 win capped his best racing season to date in 2010, with other highlights including a Cayman enduro victory in the 34th Annual Mitty at Road Atlanta, a Cayman weekend sweep at Autobahn and several more Cayman victories. The successful season included a Cayman Interseries sprint-race victory at Sebring last October.
"Sebring is one of my favorite tracks and it's a real pleasure to have that as the starting point,” Hansson said. “I've been here quite a few times by now and I love all the passing opportunities this track gives you when you play it right."
While the PNR team is new to IMSA GT3 Cup, the personnel running the operation have decades of successful sports car racing experience. The effort is led by PNR Team Principal Ron Barnaba, winning Team Manager and Crew Chief Tim Olsen, and accomplished Race Engineer Marc Manning. Hansson is also working with top American Porsche driver Patrick Long as his driver coach for the second consecutive year.
The IMSA GT3 Cup Challenge by Yokohama features semi-professional and emerging drivers racing head to head in Porsche 911 GT3 Cup race cars. The series is broken into two classes, with the Platinum Cup class featuring newer and more powerful Porsche GT3s and the Gold Cup class for 2005½ to 2009 specification GT3s.
Following test and practice sessions today and Wednesday, Thursday features IMSA GT3 Cup qualifying at 12:15 p.m. and the first of the week’s two 45-minute sprints at 5:05 p.m. The second sprint race will close the IMSA GT3 Cup’s opening race week at 4:20 p.m. on Friday.