This weekend’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship round at Virginia International Raceway held something brand new for the series. A Porsche led the field, but as we all know, that’s not new. This time, there was a Porsche electric sedan used as the race safety car. This is the first time IMSA has ever used an electric pace car, another first for Porsche’s incredible electric four-door sports car.
This weekend’s race was only held for the GTLM and GTD categories, both of which are home to Porsche customer racing teams. It not only lead cars to the green flag at the start of the race, but paced the field during a couple different safety car periods. The race started under mixed conditions with a bit of rain water still on the track at the start.
Interestingly, the Taycan Turbo S has more horsepower (a max of 750) than any of the race cars behind it. With the right downforce and suspension package, it would be interesting to see how a Taycan could do for lap time in a similar setup to a GTD category car, for instance.
“IMSA is proud to join our partners at Porsche to have the Taycan Turbo S as the Safety Car for the WeatherTech Championship this weekend,” IMSA President John Doonan said. “It’s an amazing car and fits nicely with the IMSA Green initiative that our organization has endorsed and continues to emphasize.
“As we have seen with the overwhelming response to the LMDh prototype hybrid class that debuts in 2023, as well as the ETCR car demonstration earlier this year, IMSA is focused on new and cleaner technologies for the future. Having the Porsche Taycan Turbo S as our Safety Car at VIR will put on display the potential for taking advantage of these technologies in areas we haven’t gone before.”
As the most powerful car in Porsche’s lineup, the Taycan Turbo S did not need any modifications to make its pace debut. The car has proven that it can run quick lap times, even in stock form. It’s plenty capable of keeping the cars in check under yellow flag segments.
The car served the task perfectly this weekend. It would be cool to see the Taycan Turbo S continue to pace the field for the rest of the year and into next year. I guess we’ll see if that will be the case.