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Bamber joins Hartley in Porsche WEC team

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 4/12/2016
Image of Porsche team at WEC © Ker Robertson/Getty Images Image of Porsche team at WEC

Porsche Motorsport will field a second New Zealand driver in the World Endurance Championship next year after Earl Bamber was promoted to join Brendon Hartley.

Bamber replaces retired Australian former Formula one driver Mark Webber in a three-man car. He will be a team-mate of Hartley and German Timo Bernhard.

After two years as a works driver for Porsche, the 26-year-old was deemed ready to race in a car which won the 2015 WEC crown and placed fourth this year.

It will be a fourth season for Hartley while Wanganui driver Bamber is also no stranger to endurance driving.

His most notable achievement was victory at the famed 24 Hours of Le Mans race in 2015, becoming the first Kiwi winner since the late Bruce McLaren and Chris Amon combined in 1966.

Bamber has been mainly competing in the United Sportscar championship in the United States since joining Porsche.

The German manufacturer announced changes to its other LMP1 car on Sunday, replacing two drivers from this year's title-winning trio. Marc Lieb and Romain Dumas have made way for Briton Nick Tandy and German Andre Lotterer.

The 2017 WEC season features nine races, starting at Silverstone in April.

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