Jani explores other LMDh options while Porsche deal unsigned

Le Mans 24 Hours winner Neel Jani has revealed he has yet to conclude a new contract with Porsche and is talking to other manufacturers about the new LMDh category. 

Jani explores other LMDh options while Porsche deal unsigned

Jani told Autosport that he had "no option" but to pursue other opportunities while an extension of his deal with Porsche dating back to 2013 has not been agreed. 

"Staying with Porsche is my number one priority, because I have had great history and great success with them," said the 37-year-old Swiss, who won the Le Mans 24 Hours and the World Endurance Championship crown with the German manufacturer in 2016. 

"And who would have thought that in my first full year of GT racing I would have been fighting until five laps from the end of the season to be GTE Pro champion? But I'm definitely looking to 2023 and LMDh now. 

"Driving Porsche's new LMDh is clearly my top target, and we are discussing that, but as long as it is not signed I have to keep my options open and look at other possibilities."

Jani confirmed that he is talking to other manufacturers with already-confirmed LMDh programmes for the WEC and the IMSA SportsCar Championship in North America without naming which.

He also revealed that he is exploring options to return to the prototype ranks next year in LMP2 as he gears up for the arrival of LMDh.

"P2 is something I am interested to get back into prototypes before 2023," he said.

He explained that an LMP2 programme, rather than racing for a second season in GTE Pro in the WEC, could be a possibility if he remains with Porsche. 

"I am open to many different scenarios," he added.

#92 Porsche GT TEAM Porsche 911 RSR - 19: Kevin Estre, Neel Jani, Michael Christensen

#92 Porsche GT TEAM Porsche 911 RSR - 19: Kevin Estre, Neel Jani, Michael Christensen

Photo by: JEP / Motorsport Images

Porsche has yet to confirm drivers for its return to the prototype arena in the WEC and IMSA with the Penske factory team as well as customers running its new car. 

It is set to assemble a large roster of drivers for its LMDh programme, some of whom will race the two cars Penske will run in each of the WEC and IMSA series and some who will be placed with privateer teams buying its new prototype. 

Jani joined Porsche ahead of the start of the 919 Hybrid LMP1 programme in 2014 and claimed the Le Mans/WEC title double with Romain Dumas and Marc Lieb two years later.

He remained under contract with Porsche when he raced for the privateer Rebellion LMP1 squad in the WEC through the 2018/19 superseason.

The Swiss was subsequently part of its Formula E programme in 2019/20 prior to moving back to sportscars for 2021 in GTE Pro.

Porsche remains committed to continuing in GTE Pro in next year's WEC before the arrival of its LMDh, which is scheduled to begin testing before Christmas this year.

shares
comments

Related video

Glickenhaus commits to full-season WEC 2022 entry with one car
Previous article

Glickenhaus commits to full-season WEC 2022 entry with one car

Next article

WEC GTE Am champion Rovera added to Ferrari factory roster

WEC GTE Am champion Rovera added to Ferrari factory roster
The long road to convergence for sportscar racing's new golden age Plus

The long road to convergence for sportscar racing's new golden age

The organisers of the World Endurance Championship and IMSA SportsCar Championship worked together to devise the popular new LMDh rule set. But to turn it from an idea into reality, some serious compromises were involved - both from the prospective LMDh entrants and those with existing Le Mans Hypercar projects...

IMSA
Nov 25, 2022
How Porsche's Le Mans legend changed the game Plus

How Porsche's Le Mans legend changed the game

The 956 set the bar at the dawn of Group C 40 years ago, and that mark only rose higher through the 1980s, both in the world championship and in the US. It and its successor, the longer-wheelbase 962, were voted as Autosport's greatest sportscar in 2020 - here's why

WEC
Aug 25, 2022
Why BMW shouldn't be overlooked on its return to prototypes Plus

Why BMW shouldn't be overlooked on its return to prototypes

OPINION: While the focus has been on the exciting prospect of Ferrari vs Porsche at the Le Mans 24 Hours next year, BMW’s factory return to endurance racing should not be ignored. It won't be at the French classic next year as it focuses efforts on the IMSA SportsCar Championship, but could be a dark horse in 2024 when it returns to La Sarthe with the crack WRT squad

Le Mans
Aug 21, 2022
The problem sausage kerbs continue to cause Plus

The problem sausage kerbs continue to cause

Track limits are the problem that motorsport doesn't seem to be able to rid itself of. But the use of so-called 'sausage kerbs' as a deterrent has in several instances only served to worsen the problem, and a growing number of voices want to see action taken

Formula 1
Jul 18, 2022
The history lessons Peugeot should have learned on its return Plus

The history lessons Peugeot should have learned on its return

The Peugeot 9X8 will make its World Endurance Championship debut at Monza this weekend. The French manufacturer has gone radical and will be hoping it doesn’t need to overhaul its contender, as it did with its first Le Mans challenger…

WEC
Jul 8, 2022
Why Peugeot's sportscar return will capture the imagination Plus

Why Peugeot's sportscar return will capture the imagination

OPINION: Peugeot will make its World Endurance Championship debut at Monza this weekend with the 9X8 Le Mans Hypercar that has ignored design conventions by eschewing a rear wing. Its distinctive look will help sportscar racing appeal to fresh audiences as a new golden era is ushered in

WEC
Jul 7, 2022
How Formula E's double-duty drivers influenced their Le Mans teams' fortunes Plus

How Formula E's double-duty drivers influenced their Le Mans teams' fortunes

Eight Formula E drivers made the 7,000-mile sprint from the streets of Jakarta to the fabled Circuit de la Sarthe and every one had a story to share at this year's Le Mans 24 Hours. Despite a range of triumphs and disappointments, each driver doubling up on the day job played a key role in their teams' fortunes

Le Mans
Jun 14, 2022
How an Italian junior formula giant is readying for its Le Mans future Plus

How an Italian junior formula giant is readying for its Le Mans future

Prema remains a colossus in single-seaters, but the serial Formula 2 and Formula 3 title-winning squad has joined forces with top GT squad Iron Lynx for an attack on sportscars in the World Endurance Championship and European Le Mans Series. Ahead of its debut at the Le Mans 24 Hours, its sights are firmly fixed on LMP2 glory – and a future in Hypercars next year...

Le Mans
Jun 8, 2022