The team , based close to the Nürburgring, made the switch after collecting data and testing various tyres during the second half of last season.
“After last year’s 24-hour race we started working for 2018," says team principal Klaus Abbelen. “Tyres are one of the critical components in motor racing, and even more so on the daunting Nürburgring Nordschleife. There is hardly a racetrack in the world where the challenges for racing tyres are tougher and more diverse than in the ‘Green Hell’. Therefore the choice of tyres was a major topic for us.
“In Dunlop we have found a partner that we feel excellently positioned with and that is prepared to work with us on the Porsches’ overall set-up. We also chose Lance David Arnold and Felipe Laser as drivers because both have vast experience with Dunlop tyres and the cars’ adaptation to them."
Alexander Kühn, Dunlop’s European Motorsport Product Manager added: “Frikadelli Racing ranks without doubt among the best-known and most popular teams in the VLN and the 24-hour race. We were extremely impressed with the team’s ambition and motivation,” he added. “We believe that there is great potential in the combination of our tyres with a Porsche 911 GT3 R. Hand in hand with Frikadelli Racing we will work hard to make the most of it.”
Last year was one of Dunlop's most successful in Endurance racing. Every LMP2 Prototype class race in the FIA World Endurance Championship and European Le Mans Series was won on Dunlop Tyres. In GT racing, Dunlop was the choice of the winners in both the Le Mans 24h (Aston Martin Racing) and Nürburgring 24h (Land Motorsport Audi). Dunlop also was the choice of Aston Martin Racing in winning a second consecutive World Endurance Championship - adding the 2017 LM GTE-Am litle to the 2016 LM GTE-Pro crown.
The choice of Dunlop by a top Porsche team reignites the memories of the successful collaboration between the two companies at the Nurburgring 24 hours. Porsche's first ever win in the German marathon was in 1976, when Fritz Müller, Herbert Hechler and Karl-Heinz Quirin piloted their 911 to glory.
The close development work between Porsche and Dunlop continues on the road as well as the racetrack. Dunlop’s latest generation Sport Maxx Race 2 has been developed together with Porsche in order to meet the demanding requirements for the new 911 GT3 and GT2 RS. With the first-generation Sport Maxx Race tires fitted on the previous model of the GT3, Dunlop continues its offering of specialist tyres for Porsche vehicles.