25th Anniversary: Manthey-Racing

Porsche congratulates Manthey-Racing on its 25th anniversary. The company with its headquarters in Meuspath near the Nürburgring-Nordschleife was founded in 1996 by the racing driver Olaf Manthey and has enjoyed closed ties with the sports car manufacturer ever since.

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In 2013, Manthey merged his company with Raeder Automotive GmbH. That same year, Porsche AG consolidated the successful collaboration with a 51 percent majority stake and has since been systematically expanding the cooperation. Under the management of co-owners Nicolas and Martin Raeder, Manthey-Racing GmbH now employs around 200 people. Among other activities, they have been responsible for running the Porsche 911 RSR of the factory squad in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) as well as the 911 GT3 R “Grello” in the Nürburgring Endurance Series (NLS) and at the 24-hour races on the storied circuit in Germany’s Eifel region.

“Manthey-Racing has been an important partner for Porsche since the racing outfit was founded in 1996. We’ve achieved a great deal in motorsport together, we’ve won many races and titles,” says Fritz Enzinger, Vice President Porsche Motorsport. “The enthusiasm and professionalism of the Meuspath crew provided the basis for this. The two companies have been closely affiliated since 2013 and have expanded their cooperation to include many other areas of business. For this, I’d like to express my gratitude and congratulate the Manthey firm on its 25th anniversary!”

“When I founded Manthey-Racing in 1996, I couldn’t envisage how the company would grow. Thanks to the huge commitment of everyone involved and their dedication to precision, which is what counts in motor racing, we managed to convince Porsche of our competence. Today, the sports car manufacturer even owns the majority share of Manthey-Racing and that makes me proud,” Olaf Manthey emphasises. “The decision to put the business in the hands of Nicki and Martin Raeder in 2013 also turned out to be the right one: They will continue to run the company in the same way as I intended – professional yet down-to-earth and with heart and soul. I look forward to being able to actively support the development of Manthey-Racing from the sidelines in the future as well.”

Even before Olaf Manthey established his team, the Manthey name enjoyed a very positive reputation in motor racing. Aside from his characteristic handlebar moustache, the racing driver was known most notably for his fearless, often spectacular sideways racing style in touring car races. In 1990, at the ripe age of 35, the accomplished technician took the wheel of a 911 racer for the first time. His love for the challenging rear-engine sports car blossomed: In that same season, he became the first champion in the history of the Porsche Carrera Cup. It was the first and only title in the active racing career of the two-time DTM vice-champion.

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In 1996, after winning 22 races in the long-distance championship at the Nürburgring, Manthey fulfilled a long-held dream and tackled the Porsche Supercup with his newly founded racing squad. In his very first year, the fledgling team scored fourth place in the team classification at the championship run as support to Formula 1 events. 1997 heralded the start of a winning streak – one that has no parallel in the one-make cup series to this day: Manthey and the Dutchman Patrick Huisman won the driver and team classifications in the Supercup four times in a row. This marked the beginning of a remarkable success story.

In 1999, Manthey-Racing made its debut at the 24 Hours of Le Mans with a generation-996 Porsche 911 GT3 R and promptly won the GT class. A year later, the squad moved from Rheinbreitbach to Meuspath near the Nürburgring. It didn’t take long for the sports car manufacturer and the racing outfit to pull even closer together: in 2006, Porsche Motorsport handed the operations of the UPS Porsche Junior Team to Manthey-Racing. In the same season, the Eifel squad fielded the new Porsche 911 GT3 RSR for the first time with Porsche Motorsport. With success: the start of the 24-hour race in Spa-Francorchamps led straight to a class win.

In the meanwhile, Manthey had set the goal of winning the 24-hour race on home turf. They narrowly missed out three times, but the breakthrough came in 2006 with a yellow and green painted 911 GT3-MR. And again in 2007, 2008 and 2009 with “der Dicke” 911 GT3 RSR. In 2010, they came close to causing another sensation: The 911 GT3 R Hybrid, campaigned by Manthey for Porsche Motorsport, led the 24-hour race over a long stretch only to retire shortly before the flag with a broken valve spring. In 2011, Manthey-Racing again remained unbeaten at the Nordschleife classic. For all five victories, the former Porsche Junior and today’s brand ambassador, Timo Bernhard, was part of the driving crew, four times with Marcel Tiemann as well as the eventual Le Mans winners Marc Lieb and Romain Dumas sharing driving duties. In 2018, victory number six went to a bright yellow 911 GT3 R, which fans fondly dubbed “Grello”. To date, no other team has been more successful at this race.

Manthey-Racing has supported Porsche’s GT factory outings in the World Endurance Championship since 2013 and secured another class win at Le Mans in the debut year of the 911 RSR. In 2015, the partnership won all world championship titles in the GTE-Pro category – as well as in the 2018/2019 “super season”, including a third Le Mans victory as part of a one-two result.

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Today, Manthey-Racing is a booming company with four fields of business. The spectrum ranges from motorsport campaigns for Porsche in the WEC and at the Nürburgring-Nordschleife to events for the Porsche Racing Experience by Manthey-Racing and the Porsche Service Centre in Meuspath through to providing worldwide support to customer teams. Moreover, the company has its own projects such as the Cayman GT4 Trophy by Manthey-Racing in the Nürburgring Endurance Series (NLS) as well as the development of “MR” packages for Porsche GT racing and series production models. The 515 kW (700 hp) 911 GT2 RS is one of the most spectacular road-legal sports cars for which Manthey-Racing has created a special performance kit. With test driver Lars Kern at the wheel, in October 2018, the MR version lapped the Nordschleife in a time of 6:40.3 minutes. Manthey-Racing now offers the MR package for many of Porsche’s GT models.

“We gladly continued Olaf Manthey’s philosophy after our two company’s merged because it matched our thinking at Raeder Motorsport,” states Nicolas Raeder, the managing director and co-owner of Manthey-Racing. “With Porsche as a partner and shareholder, our company has evolved at an exciting pace. And we want to continue growing in the future and build on the know-how that we’ve achieved in motorsport – by providing services for private drivers, at events or in the development of racing and road-going sports cars. With our dedicated employees, we can hardly wait to tackle the next 25 years in the gripping story of Manthey-Racing.”

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Report by Porsche.com (first published by presse.porsche.de)

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