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Jota Porsche LMDh car to run first shakedown ahead of Spa WEC debut

The British Jota team’s new Porsche 963 LMDh will run for the first time this week ahead of its World Endurance Championship debut at Spa at the end of April.

Jota Porsche 963

Porsche will give the hybrid prototype a shakedown on Wednesday at its Weissach test track as part of the handover to Jota.

Factory driver Matt Campbell, part of the Porsche Penske Motorsport line-up in the IMSA SportsCar Championship, is scheduled to drive the first of the four customer 963s released for 2023 to be delivered.

Reigning LMP2 WEC champion Jota will have Porsche-contracted Antonio Felix da Costa and Yifei Ye present at the test, but it is unclear if they will drive.

The testing rules in place for the WEC limit the car to just one hour of running for a shakedown.

Jota will then take the car to the workshops of the defunct Rosberg team in Germany for final preparations ahead of its race debut in the Spa 6 Hours on 29 April rather than returning to its UK base.

There will be no time for further testing ahead of Spa for the Hertz Team Jota car to be raced by da Costa, Ye and Will Stevens.

Jota co-owner Sam Hignett said: “With time being limited it didn’t make sense to come back to base and Dieter [Gass, the new team principal of the squad’s Hypercar operation] lined us up to use the old Rosberg facility.

“We’ve got quite a lot of testing planned before the Le Mans 24 Hours, though how much we’ll do will be dependent on the availability of spares.

“We need to make sure we go into Le Mans with a full complement of parts.”

Jota Porsche 963

Jota Porsche 963

Photo by: Jota Sport

The second of the four customer 963s, the US JDC-Miller MotorSports team’s example, is due for its roll-out and handover on Thursday.

JDC-Miller, winner of the 2022 Sebring 12 Hours with Cadillac, is working towards a race debut in the IMSA series at the Laguna Seca round on 14 May.

The Proton Competition team will take delivery of its pair of 963s destined for a twin-programme in the WEC and IMSA at a later date.

Proton isn’t scheduled to join the WEC until Monza at the start of July and IMSA until the Road America round in August.

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