Leg­ends on four wheels and two feet in at­ten­dance

911 Porsche World - - News And Views -

81,550 Porsche fa­nat­ics de­scended on the La­guna Seca cir­cuit in cen­tral Cal­i­for­nia for the sixth in­stal­ment of the Rennsport Re­union cel­e­bra­tion of all things Porsche. It was the high­est at­ten­dance at La­guna Seca in five years and eas­ily broke the Rennsport Re­union V record of more than 60,000 at the pre­vi­ous event in 2015, which was also held at La­guna Seca.

The theme of the sixth edi­tion was “Cham­pi­ons”. With over 30,000 race wins, Porsche reck­ons it is by far the most suc­cess­ful brand in mo­tor­sports world­wide. Around 2500 ve­hi­cles, in­clud­ing ev­ery­thing from 356 Speed­ster to the RS Spy­der, the 959 Dakar and the 919 Hy­brid racer, thrilled vis­i­tors with their fast laps in seven cat­e­gories.

Dr. Wolf­gang Porsche him­self turned some laps in 356 Num­ber One, the first reg­is­tered ve­hi­cle from Porsche in 1948. “It was a plea­sure to drive,” said the Chair­man of the Su­per­vi­sory Board at Porsche AG. “The corkscrew cor­ner is def­i­nitely a lot of fun in a re­ally fast car. I only know this pas­sage from our track at Leipzig. The orig­i­nal is far more im­pres­sive.”

Among nu­mer­ous no­table fig­ures who at­tended the 2018 event was Bel­gian mo­tor rac­ing leg­end Jacky Ickx. “Some very emo­tional ex­pe­ri­ences are con­nected to so many Porsche race cars,” he says. “But it’s the in­cred­i­ble mo­ments that are deeply rooted. This be­comes more and more ob­vi­ous when I see a Porsche 936. In such a car we won a seem­ingly im­pos­si­ble race at Le Mans in 1977. For hours we fought tooth and nail. The team gave their ut­most. In the end we climbed to the top of the podium. We made the im­pos­si­ble pos­si­ble. No one gave up – you never for­get such lessons.”

Jochen Mass, the Porsche leg­end from Ger­many, was also there. “It’s fan­tas­tic to see all these race cars. That’s when I re­alise ev­ery­thing I drove back then,” said Jochen on the eve of his 72nd birth­day. “When I see these cars, I want to race them. Es­pe­cially the 962. These cars bring back all the mem­o­ries. For in­stance, I think how mag­nif­i­cent it was to drive the works cars. When cus­tomer teams slightly mod­i­fied the 962, of­ten the good bal­ance was gone. What does that tell us? Leave a Porsche as it is. That’s as good as it gets.”

Bring­ing things up to the mod­ern day was not only a few demo laps by Porsche’s new 935 track toy but also the fi­nal ap­pear­ance of a Le Mans leg­end. Af­ter scor­ing three over­all wins at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the ti­tle of the World En­durance Cham­pi­onship WEC and set­ting records on the Nür­bur­gring-Nord­schleife and the Cir­cuit Spa-Fran­cor­champs, Porsche works driver Earl Bam­ber from New Zealand turned the fi­nal laps in the Evo-ver­sion of the Porsche 919 Hy­brid. A fit­ting end to both a fan­tas­tic ca­reer and a great event.

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