Porsche 911 GT1 Strassenversion set for Blancpain Ultracar Sports Club debut at Circuit Paul Ricard
The Blancpain Ultracar Sports Club will welcome a ‘blast from the past’ this weekend when the incredibly rare Porsche 911 GT1 Strassenversion joins its line-up at Circuit Paul Ricard.
Unlike modern-day GT rules the Porsche was originally conceived as a race car to compete in SRO’s FIA GT Championship before 20 road-legal examples were built to satisfy homologation rules.
The 911 GT1 Strassenversion – or Street Version in English – therefore bears a striking similarity to the cars that competed around the world in 1997, including a low front splitter and large rear wing. Porsche was forced to de-tune the racing version of its 3.2-litre flat-six twin-turbo engine in order to comply with European emissions regulations, although 0-100kph in 3.9 seconds and a top speed of 310kph are both still very impressive statistics almost 20 years on!
Since its creation in 2015 the Blancpain Ultracar Sports Club has focused its efforts on gathering only the newest, fastest, rarest and technologically advanced hypercars. However, the sheer performance possessed by homologation specials like the Porsche and its late 1990s counterparts, as well as their place in GT racing folklore, made this an opportunity too good to miss.
It is also a chance to compare the 911 GT1 Strassenversion with two of its modern equivalents: the McLaren P1 GTR and Pagani Zonda R, both of which will also be on track at Circuit Paul Ricard. Although neither are derived from specific racing cars, both were designed as the ultimate expression of track-only performance.
Interestingly, this particular McLaren is the only road-legal P1 GTR currently available in the world, drawing even more parallels with the 911 GT1 Strassenversion.
All three, along with other ultracars, will take to Circuit Paul Ricard this Saturday and Sunday as part of the Blancpain GT Series Endurance Cup weekend.
Paul Ricard Timetable
Saturday 25 June
11:35 – 12:05: Session 1
16:45 – 17:15: Session 2
Sunday 26 June
10:10 – 10:40: Session 3
13:05 – 13:35: Session 4