Works Porsche 956 - The Definitive History

Orders will usually be shipped within 3-5 working days

Technical Details

  • Description
  • Scale guide

This book will be delivered from the UK. Local duties and taxes may be applicable on import to regions outside the UK. By purchasing this title, you agree and consent to your information being shared with Porter Press International for use in the fulfilment of your order.

Porter Press – fine books curated by Amalgam - the full collection >

Unleashed in 1982, the Porsche 956 became the most successful purpose-built race car in history. Over the following decade, the 956 and its later long-wheelbase version, the 962, would win five consecutive world championships, as well as every single classic sportscar race in the world a record number of times: the Le Mans 24 Hours seven times, the Daytona 24 Hours six times and the Sebring 12 Hours four times, plus 39 world championship events and 55 IMSA races, to name but a few of its remarkable achievements. Many of the successes were achieved by works-entered cars, almost always in the iconic white-and-blue colours of sponsor Rothmans, and they form the focus of an extraordinary body of work researched and written by author Serge Vanbockryck over the past 30 years. This is the first part of his project, a two-volume production about the Works 956s, with a second such title on the Works 962s also available to purchase.

Key content

  • Porsche racing heritage: the book examines the evolution of Porsche’s racing endeavours in the 30 years before the 956’s introduction, from the first Gmünd coupés of 1951, through the iconic 917s of the early 1970s, to the last Indy-engined 936/81 of 1981.
  • The 956’s design and development: the work of Norbert Singer and his team is covered in exhaustive detail and numerous never-before-seen photographs, including design stages, wind tunnel models, prototype construction and testing at Weissach.
  • The 1982 season: the story of how the Works 956s took endurance racing by storm from the outset, taking the top three places at the Le Mans 24 Hours and winning the World Endurance Championship titles for both manufacturers and drivers, the latter for Jacky Ickx.
  • The 1983 season: a totally dominant year saw Porsche retain its championship titles, with superstar driver Stefan Bellof bringing youthful brio alongside the works team’s experienced hands; his taking of pole position at the Nürburgring and then crashing in the race through over-exuberance has gone down in sportscar racing legend.
  • The 1984 season: while a protest about last-minute rules changes led Porsche to boycott Le Mans, the works team carried on as before with lots more success and a third manufacturers’ championship.
  • The 1985 season: the 962C was now the works team’s weapon of choice, but occasionally 956s were pressed into service as stand-ins and extras.
  • The people: all the works drivers of the 956 era are profiled, plus engineers Norbert Singer and Roland Kussmaul; the drivers are Jacky Ickx, Derek Bell, Jochen Mass, Vern Schuppan, Stefan Bellof, Al Holbert, Jürgen Barth, Hurley Haywood, Hans-Joachim Stuck, John Watson and Henri Toivonen.
  • Chassis histories: exhaustive detail about every works 956, technical details and reports of every test and every race, from gear ratios to compression ratios, gathered by the author from sifting through thousands of pages of period documents in Porsche’s Stuttgart archives, by conducting dozens of interviews with people significant to the story, and by attending Group C races around the world in the 1980s and 1990s, as well as many historic races, gatherings and auctions.
  • Asides: the background to the relationship between Rothmans and the works Porsche team, and the innovations brought by Rothmans in televising the action worldwide and filming from on-board cameras.
  • Limited Edition

    Two specially bound volumes limited to just 956 copies.

    The Author

    Serge Vanbockryck started his career as a journalist and photographer in the late 1980s, covering sportscar and endurance racing for newspapers and magazines across Europe and the UK, while also working for radio and television in Belgium, France and the UK. He was also a photographic contributor to many of the ACO Le Mans yearbooks, to Dr. János Wimpffen’s sportscar tetralogy that accompanied his epic Time And Two Seats, and to Jean-Marc Teissèdre’s biography of Bob Wollek. He is a regular contributor to British monthly Racecar Engineering and to Germany’s leading automotive monthly, Sport Auto, as well as being the co-author of the official Porsche Rennsport Reunion programmes. He is also a member of The Society of Automotive Historians in Britain.

    Since the late 1980s he has been studying, documenting and gathering all possible racing and test data on the 200-plus Porsches 956 and 962 that raced in period competition from 1982 until 1999, with the clear purpose of one day writing the ultimate book of reference on this most iconic of race cars. His dozens of interviews with key decision makers at Porsche, and also with engineers, managers and drivers from the works team as well as the many privateer teams, and his several hundreds of hours spent researching every conceivable period document at Porsche’s historical archives in Stuttgart, have over time made him one of the world’s foremost historians on the subject.

    Professionally, he left journalism for public relations and marketing in the mid-1990s, working in F1 and the World Rally Championship with Marlboro and Lucky Strike, and Le Mans and the WRC when Toyota returned to international motorsport with the Corolla WRC and the GT-One. Since 2000 he has been involved with General Motors’ international motorsport activities as European PR coordinator for the Cadillac LMP, Corvette GT and Chevrolet WTCC programmes. In 2019 he received the international ACO/UJSF Communications Award for his work with Corvette Racing.

    Title Information

    Author: Serge Vanbockryck
    Publication: September 2019
    Specifications: 340mm x 245mm portrait hardback, page extent 800pp. Grey slipcase.
    Illustrations: 850 images
    Language: English
    Publisher: Porter Press International
    ISBN: 978-1-907085-90-1



    In order for us to create your bespoke model, you will need to choose 4 extra options. Paint colour, interior colour, wheel style and caliper colour.

    Please complete the form and a member of our Sales Team will contact you.

    By submitting this contact form, you consent to us storing your information and contacting you in regards to this specific model.

    Contact Us

    Please contact us for more information about ordering this model.

    By submitting this contact form, you consent to us storing your information and contacting you in regards to this specific model.