The Asian Le Mans Series will invent a Porsche Trophy, when the new season starts this weekend.
The series has had a Cup class for the last few years, and there has been a single Porsche car participating every now and then, but now they will try to attract even more cars from the German car brand.
Four Porsche 911 GT3 Cup cars have been entered so far for this weekend, so it looks like that there is a market for the cars. There was a round of the Porsche Carrera Cup Asia on the same track just a few days ago, so that might be a factor as well.
Some of the four teams ring a bell here in Europe.
Earl Bamber Motorsport will have Jeffrey Chiang and Graeme Dowsett behind the wheel. Bamber is a Porsche works driver and former Le Mans winner, who has chosen to start his own team in Asia, to support the series.
OpenRoad Racing has only announced Francis Tjia so far, but there needs to be at least one more driver, in order to race the full four hours.
EKS Motorsports will field three Chinese drivers. Li Jia Qi, Daniel Lu and Boa Jinlong will share the car. Daniel Lu has been chosen as Porsche Junior driver in China, at the age of just 18. It will be very interesting to follow his career in the coming years. The EKS part has nothing to do with Mattias Ekström.
Modena Motorsports will enter Benny Simonsen and Philippe Descombes. Descombes is from France, but has been racing in Asian series since 1999, racing in things like Formula 2000 and Porsche Carrera Cup Asia. Benny Simonsen is the younger brother of Allan Simonsen, but has certainly proven himself in racing cars all over the world. He get regular phone calls from teams, who needs a fast driver, who can guide the inexperienced Bronze ranked drivers, just like Descombes.
The Asian Le Mans Series 2018/19 will start this weekend at Shanghai International Circuit. Other than the Porsche Endurance Trophy, we have LMP2, LMP3 and GT3 cars participating too.