Although the 911 is now synonymous with racing, this was not always the case and was certainly not the original sentiment of the Porsche factory. Regardless, Jack Ryan made an indelible mark when he dominated the 2-litre class of the 1966 24 Hours of Daytona, against the wishes of the Porsche race team manager at the time, Huschke von Hanstein. Almost 60 years later, the 911 hs become by far the most successful GT race car of all time, having won over 30,000 races.
For the GT class in 1999, the 996 GT3 R was unveiled with high expectations as it succeeded one of the most revered monikers in tin top racing – the 3.8 RSR. Utilising a water cooled 3.6 litre flat six, the car outputs over 400 bhp through a six speed manual gearbox. The resulting package was light, reliable and intuitive for both the driver and mechanics and as a result the car was popular with privateers. It saw great success and filled grids which allowed it to win in class at the 24 hours of Daytona, Spa, Nürburgring and of course, Le Mans. The 996 GT3 R also won in class in the FIA GT championship, ELMS, ALMS, and the British GTO Championship.
Originally dispatched to Skea Racing International in Perth, Australia, in December 1999, this 996 GT3 R began its racing campaign at the 24 Hours of Daytona on February 6 2000. Piloted by Lloyd Hawkins, Johnny Mowlem, David Murry, and Rohan Skea, it finished in 39th position overall. Mowlem and Murry rejoined forces for the 12 Hours of Sebring in March 2000, clinching 11th overall and an impressive 2nd in the GT class. Subsequent endeavours in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) unfolded at Charlotte, and the car also competed in the 500 Kilometres of Silverstone, leading up to its entry at Le Mans that summer.
Commencing on 18 June 2000, adorned with race number 82, the 911 was driven by Murry, Mowlem, and Sascha Maassen, in the 24 Hours of Le Mans. After conquering 304 laps, it finished in 2nd place in the GT category and 17th overall. Returning to ALMS action in July, Mowlem and Murry drove to to 2nd place in the GT category at the 1,000 Kilometres of Nürburgring. The ALMS saga continued at various iconic locations, concluding its 2000 campaign with appearances at the Laguna Seca Raceway, Las Vegas Motor Speedway, and Adelaide Street Circuit.
The car stayed in secure storage in Australia until 2018, when it was subsequently transported to the UK and went into the care of its owner via Prill Porsche Classics. In March 2023, Gerd Schmid, former Porsche Motorsport Production Manager, confirmed the cars well documented history. The car then underwent meticulous race preparation at BS Motorsport in Aylesbury, including an engine leakdown test, dynamometer run, new alternator installation, component crack testing, and other essential enhancements.
This thrilling 996-generation Porsche GT3 R is highly eligible and ready to race in Masters Endurance Legends or the Peter Auto Endurance Racing Legends series, to continue its racing career.