Porsche fans in Australia have given the country’s inaugural Rennsport Festival a resounding vote of approval.
Porsches old and new, from road and track, local and abroad together with famous faces and enthusiasts of the German marque filled Sydney Motorsport Park on the May 25-26 weekend in a celebration of all things Porsche.
The superb on-track action from twin one-hour Porsche Carrera Cup Australia enduros and triple header Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge presented by Pirelli races was complemented with a showcase of stunning and priceless Porsches both on display and on track.
In all, more than 240 Porsches took to the circuit in the weekend’s 37 track events with another 120 immaculately presented in the Porschestrasse display, Concours d’Elegance and Show’n’Shine. Together with privately owned vehicles driven to Rennsport the total number of Porsches at Sydney Motorsport Park was estimated at more than 500, with a crowd of approximately 4,000 over the two days.
In Carrera Cup action it was Elite Class driver Max Twigg and V8 enduro specialist Luke Youlden that took round three honours while up-and-comer Richard Muscat took a clean sweep of victories in the GT3 Cup Challenge presented by Pirelli.
Historic race cars drawing special attention on and off the circuit were the 1981 Le Mans-winning Porsche 936, 2005/6 American Le Mans Series LMP2 Porsche RS Spyder, the ex-Vern Schuppan Porsche 956C from the Japanese Sportscar Championship of the mid ‘80s, the Le Mans class-winning 996 RSR from 2002 and the ex-Alan Hamilton 1968 911 TR – the car that, as Alan Hamilton relayed on the weekend, “came within 10 yards” of winning the 1969 Australian Touring Car Championship.
A Porsche new car showroom display, Porsche Kids Driving School, Porsche Panamera NSW Police Car and skidpan and 4WD off-road activities with the Porsche Sports Driving School ensured there was never a dull moment for Porsche aficionados.
“The feedback from Porsche competitors, Porsche car club members and the general public to the inaugural Rennsport Ferstival in Australia has been overwhelmingly positive,” says Porsche Cars Australian Managing Director, Michael Winkler.
“You measure the success of special events such as this not only by what happens on track but by the number of smiles and feeling of camaraderie in the garages.”
The milestone event was celebrated on the Saturday evening with a gala dinner for 220 special guests, acknowledging past and present Porsche legends in Australia including: Porsche distributor Alan Hamilton, tarmac racing Porsche king Jim Richards, the most successful Carrera Cup racer in the world Craig Baird, and director of Porsche’s Historic Racing Department Klaus Bischof.
“People are already asking me when the next Rennsport will be,” says Winkler. “The honest answer is ‘I don’t know right now’ but we are certain to have another, even bigger and better judging by the success of our first attempt.”
Porsche Rennsport Australia Motor Racing Festival results:
Porsche Carrera Cup, round three:
1st Max Twigg / Luke Youlden (2011 GT3 Cup Type 997)
Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge presented by Pirelli, round two:
1st Richard Muscat (2006 GT3 Cup Type 997)
Porsche Sports Cars
1st Russell Kempnich (Porsche 956)
Group S & Group N under 2500cc
1st Wayne Seabrook (911 T)
Group S & Group N over 2500cc
1st Bryan Taylor (1974 Carrera)
1st Greame Evans (911 T)
1st Nathan Johnston (911 SC)
1st Phil Treloar (996)
Rennsport Show 'n' Shine Trophy
1st John Pisani (356A 1959)
Rennsport Australian Porsche Clubs Trophy
1st Stephen Richardson (911 Carrera RS 1973)
Rennsport Peoples' Choice Award
1st Antony Martin (911 SC 3.0 1980
Rennsport Concours D'Elegance Trophy
1st Ron Goodman (356 Cabriolet 1953)
Rennsport Concourse D'Elegance Masterclass Trophy
1st Paul Muras (928 S4 1989)