Fassbender’s Le Mans dream

Michael Fassbender, event ambassador and participant in the 2019 cartell.ie International Rally of the Lakes at a promotional day hosted by Killarney and District Motor Club (KDMC) ahead of the event, where he conducted test drives of a Porsche 911 and other rally cars (Image: Eamonn Keogh)

Michael Fassbender has set a target of competing in the Le Mans 24-Hour endurance race next June and will document his effort on a YouTube video series.

Road to Le Mans will begin streaming today (Friday 11th Oct) and will run weekly until he actually races at the famous French event or up to the point where it is no longer possible to qualify for the race.

The series will follow the local Hollywood A-lister while he competes on entry-level Porsche Carrera Cup Races in Germany, and bigger (and longer) endurance races throughout Europe.

“I’ve just always felt drawn to going fast into a corner and fast out and just naturally felt connected to it – and now I want to go to the ultimate place,” he said. “I think it’s the history of the place, I think it’s the drivers that crashed there, competed there, won there…”

Organisers allow 60 cars to enter the mid-June race and the majority of places are taken up by manufacturer teams or drivers contesting the full World Endurance Racing Championship.

However, amateur drivers are allowed enter and they would be obliged to share driving duties with a least two professional drivers. Such teams usually enter the GT/PRO-AM category, a class for sportscars like the Porsche 911 GT3  that Fassbender already races in Germany.

Porsche would have “grandfather rights” when it comes to securing an entry and there is no reason why Fassbender would not be allowed share a car entered by the factory,  provided he met the qualifying (speed and time) criteria set by the organising club.

Prior to his season racing for Porsche, Fassbender took part in a Ferrari backed race Ferrari Challenge series in America where he took five podiums and one win in the 11 races he entered. He also contested the RallyFest element of the cartell.ie Rally of the Lakes earlier this year.  

The owner of the Killarney Advertiser, Cormac Casey introduced Fassbender to the prospect of competing in his local motorsport event and with the commitment of the 2019 Clerk of the Course Dermot Healy, it  became a reality.

“Michael’s motorsport activities were known to us which made it easy to convince him to get involved. We are delighted to be part of Michael’s motorsport journey to Le Mans and creating a lasting  motorsport connect with Killarney and the rallying community,” said Cormac. “Michael has been an incredible ambassador for the event, since competing Michael has gone on to promote the Killarney based event the world over.

Michael Fassbender, event ambassador and participant in the Cartell.ie International Rally of the Lakes 40th Anniversary event, with Dermot Healy, Clerk of the Course, and Cormac Casey (Event coordinator and KC Print) at the finish ramp at The Gleneagle Hotel, Killarney, on Sunday. Picture: Eamonn Keogh