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Porsche at Le Mans Part III: 1969 to 1971

Porsche 917 production 1969
‘Production line racer’ – in their quest to produce 25 running cars in time for the inspection by the FIA, Porsche pulled out all the stops as evidenced by the activity in this image

The name Porsche is synonymous with the world’s toughest endurance race, the 24 Hours of Le Mans, boasting an unbroken run of 66 years. During this time, they have amassed 19 victories. This is Part III of their story…

PART III – 1969 to 1971

The introduction of the Porsche Type 917, was the car that Ferdinand Piëch had planned in his mind, all through the 1960s. It was the ultimate racer with which he would lift the Le Mans 24 Hour trophy, the goal towards which he had been working for the last decade through the incremental creation of the 904, 906, 910, 907 and 908. Referred to as the ‘plastic’ Porsches, an awfully derogatory term for such an important series of race cars, this was Piëch’s contribution to the world of sports car racing.

Were it not for this highly significant series of race cars, we would not have the unequalled record of achievements that Porsche can lay claim to today. For that reason, we have dedicated this chapter of Porsche’s rise to fame at Le Mans, to the contribution made by the Type 917, much maligned at first, but it became the weapon of choice after just one season.

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