We’re delighted to be supporting the 1956 Porsche 356A of Renée Brinkerhoff and her team at Valkyrie Racing on this year’s Carrera Panamericana. Renée’s Carrera run kicks off a series of events that will see the 356 racing on all seven continents. The program includes the 2019 East African Safari Classic Rally.
La Carrera Panamericana is a seven-day, 2,000-mile rally through Mexico. Renée is the only female driver on this year’s Carrera: her third rally outing in Mexico. While 2013 brought a class win (a first for a debutante) and great memories of the Mexican marathon, 2015 was a different story. The car was involved in a serious accident through qualifying and only a huge push by the team to repair got Renée to the start.
Having made its way to the chequered flag in 2o15, the car was subsequently completely rebuilt by Jim Ansite in California and is now in perfect condition. Tuthill Porsche played its part in the rebuild, with Richard flying out to Buttonwillow Raceway in CA to assist during pre-event setup and testing. We have also supplied a highly experienced Porsche rally mechanic to join Renée’s capable Carrera team, in the shape of Simon ‘Slim’ Redhead.
Detailed preparations for the thirtieth anniversary of the Carrera have paid off in spades. Renée and co-driver, Roberto Mendoza, set the second-fastest time for a 356, finishing 45th overall and ahead of five other 356s and several 911s. Well done all!
“This race commands a lot of respect and has earned its notorious reputation,” says Renée. “To say I don’t have trepidation would be a lie. But I’ve learned fear can be healthy: we just have to master it.”
The rally started yesterday in Querétaro and will run until October 19th, when it finishes in Durango. Follow Renée’s progress on the Valkyrie Racing Facebook page or via @valkrie_racing on Instagram. Here’s a cool video from team manager, Johana Mendoza: