2004 Porsche 911 (996) GT3-RSR J. Bergmeister, P. Long, S. Maassen Team: White Lightning Racing Race: 10th overall (1st in GT class) at Le Mans in 2004 Minichamps - 400046990 (diecast)
The 2004 GT3-RSR was the last version of the 996 before it was replaced by the 997 in 2005, and was a development of the 996 GT3 Cup of 1998. The biggest difference with the preceding GT3-RS from 2001 was that the RSR had a sequential gearbox and a fuel cut-off system for faster gear changes. The engine was a 3598 cm³ boxer-6 with DOHC and 24 valves, capable of producing 445 hp.
White Lightning Racing bought chassis #WP0ZZZ99Z4S693066 new in 2004. The car’s first race was at Sebring, when it was used only in practice. After that it went to Le Mans and many endurance races until 2006. At La Sarthe the car raced from 2004 to 2006, always in White Lightning’s colors. But their best result in the 24 Heures du Mans was in 2004. That year GT3-RSR #90 started in 29th, but with a solid race from Bergmeister, Long and Maasen it finished in 10th overall and first in the GT class.
Doing a headcount, with this model I now have five different versions of the 996 GT3 RSR. Therefore, it wasn’t as if the W-143 Garage was lacking in GT3-RSRs. And I’m not a GT3-RSR nut (guilty as charged only for the 917 case). So, what’s the deal? This GT3-RSR #90 is a class winner. The White Lightning team is not exactly a favorite of mine, and the real car is far from gorgeous. In model terms it’s your basic and honest Minichamps GT3 RSR, so there isn’t much to write about. Consequently, not a “high profile” model. But when a car comes first in class it automatically becomes interesting. So here it is.