The Supervisory Board of Porsche Motorsport North America, Inc. (PMNA) appointed German Jens Walther to President and CEO of PMNA today “effective immediately” following the retirement of American Paul Ritchie.
Walther, 41, who has been with Porsche since 2001, has managed the Porsche One-Make Cup program that consists of 19 national and international championships, including what Porsche says is its “premium championship, the Porsche Mobil 1 Supercup.” His first four years at Porsche were spent as a manager in marketing, communications, and business development at Porsche Engineering Group GmbH.
Porsche says, “Walther holds an MBA degree in International Management from International University in Germany and Arthur D. Little School of Management in Boston.”
He will be leaving his hometown in Stuttgart, Germany with his wife and two children to commence his operations at PMNA in Santa Ana, California.
Ritchie was appointed to the president and CEO position of PMNA in January 2008 and has overseen some great years in North American Porsche motorsports. For the American Le Mans 2008 season, Joerg Bergmeister and Wolf Henzler took the GT2 class driver championship in a 997 GT3 RSR run by Flying Lizard Motorsports. In 2009 Bergmeister and Patrick Long won the GT2 championship yet again. For the 2010 season, Bergmeister and Long are currently leading the GT class championship with only one race to go, the Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta, which will be held October 2. The duo’s nearest competitor trails by 22 points in the drivers’ championship.
Ritchie also had critical involvement in Jeff Zwart’s recent class win and record in a GT3 Cup car at the Pikes Peak hill climb — a win that brought Porsche far more attention than expected.