The creation of the Group C, scheduled in 1981 and released in 1982, marks a return of prototype racing to its highest prestige. Porsche is very enthusiastic.
The effort of the engineers focuses on innovations of chassis and bodywork. Despite a similar engine to that of the 936, the Porsche 956 perfectly meets the intent of the FIA to promote a modernized range of vehicles.
The model 956 along with its further evolution as the 962 is so far ahead of its competitors that Porsche completely dominates the World Endurance Championship for five consecutive years.
Porsche designed the 956 for their own prestige. Ten cars are prepared for the official drivers of the brand and are sponsored by the Rothmans cigarette company. Twelve other units are made for private teams.
First races, first triumphs: in May 1982, the 956-001 wins the 6 hours of Silverstone. A month later, the model 956 takes the first three places at Le Mans.
Second at Le Mans in 1982, the 956-003 won its last four races of that year. Its victory at Le Mans in 1983 will be the greatest feat of its prestigious career. Appreciating a few minutes before the end of the 24 hours that the engine is going to expire, Al Holbert manages to keep a short lead ahead of another 956 driven by Derek Bell. It is interesting to note that the 956 cars got the top eight positions in that race.
956-003 is estimated $ 7M for sale by Gooding in Pebble Beach on August 15, lot 050. Here is the link to the press release.
I invite you to watch the video shared by the auction house.