Born: 14th December 1977
Where: Alès, France
Lives: Basel, Switzerland
Marital Status: Partner Elysia, one son (Gabin)
Height/Weight: 1.74 m/62 kg
Hobbies: Rallying, jet-ski, jogging, squash
A full season in the FIA World Endurance Championship as a Porsche works driver, including the 24 Hours of Le Mans, is simply not enough for the Frenchman. At the beginning of the year, Romain Dumas also likes to take on a private mission, fighting his way through the desert at the Dakar Rally. In 2015 alone, he also tackled three rounds of the World Rally Championship (Monte Carlo, Germany and France) as well as a European Rally Championship round (Cyprus). In earlier days, he also competed on the breathtaking Macau street circuit and at Pikes Peak. At the famous international hill climb in Colorado in 2014, he clinched the overall win in a prototype, after conquering 19.99-kilometres with 156 corners, and a 1,400-metre climb to Pikes Peak at 4,300 metres.
“I blow all the money I make as a company driver on my private events,” admits the man from Alès in the south of the French Cévennes.“Long distance racing is what I do for a living. Hill climbing and rallying are what I do for fun, I’m passionate about both.”
What else could he have become? He grew up with Porsche. His father drove a Porsche in the European Hill Climb championships. “I was still small, but my father sat me in a 962 Le Mans racing car. He closed the door and I thought: Wow, is this an aeroplane?”
Romain Dumas has clocked up seven overall wins at 24-hour races, the Le Mans successes have come in the Audi together with Timo Bernhard and Mike Rockenfeller in 2010, four at the Nürburgring-Nordschleife and two at the circuit in Spa with Porsche.
He calls Le Mans his second home. He won a young talent competition here at 16, and just stayed on. He went to school in Le Mans, made new friends, found sponsors and sat his driving licence there. Since then every year he has been collecting his racing licence from the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO), the organiser of the 24-hour race. Le Mans is always different, always dramatic. This is where the Mediterranean character meets the Atlantic low pressure trough, so it tends to rain heavily and persistently at the 24-hour race. Dumas knows every inch of it, and 2016 marks his 16th time there.
The GTE-Pro class victory in the Porsche 911 RSR in 2013 was one of his ambitions. “My ultimate dream,” said the funster, now deadly serious, “is to score overall victory here with Porsche.” Patriotism also has its part to play. “For a Frenchman,” he explains, “Le Mans is always going to be the greatest, because it is so hard to win. The manufacturers and the world think so too.”
He knows only too well that nobody can conquer Le Mans alone. “Yes, you have to be fast. But you also have to be a team player, careful with the car, and you need the best team. If just one of these aspects is missing, it’s not going to work.” For the third consecutive year, he shared a Porsche 919 Hybrid with Neel Jani and Marc Lieb.
Romain Dumas competes in the FIA World Endurance Championship, including the Le Mans 24 Hours, in a Porsche 919 Hybrid for the Porsche Team.
2016 Porsche works driver WEC, LMP1
2015 Porsche works driver WEC, LMP1; 3rd Drivers’ World Championship, 1 win (Bahrain), 5 second places, 1 pole position, 5th at Le Mans, took part in the Dakar Rally, private outing at the WRC rounds in France and Germany
2014 Porsche works driver WEC, LMP1; 1st São Paulo, 2nd Bahrain, 3rd Shanghai; pole positions Shanghai, Bahrain
2013 Porsche works driver; 1st Le Mans 24 Hours (GT); 1st Nürburgring 24 Hours (SP7 class, 7th overall); LMP1 test programme; 10th WRC Rally de France Alsace; French Rally Championship (4 wins in a Porsche 911 RS)
2012 Porsche works driver; 1st Spa (WEC, overall); 2nd Sebring 12 Hours (WEC/ALMS, overall); Pikes Peak International Hill Climb: 1st Pikes Peak Open class, Rookie of the Year
2011 Porsche works driver; 1st Nürburgring 24 Hours (overall); 1st Laguna Seca (ALMS, GTH); Le Mans 24 Hours
2010 Porsche works driver; 1st Le Mans 24 Hours (overall, Audi); 1st Spa 24 Hours (overall); 1st Mosport (ALMS, LMP2); Nürburgring 24 Hours
2009 Porsche works driver; 1st Nürburgring 24 Hours (overall); 4th Grand-Am Series (DP), 4 poles; 6th Daytona 24 Hours (overall); Le Mans 24 Hours
2008 Porsche works driver; Winner ALMS (LMP2), 4 wins; 1st Sebring 12 Hours (overall); 1st Nürburgring 24 Hours (overall); 3rd Daytona 24 Hours; 3rd Silverstone (LMS, overall); Le Mans 24 Hours
2007 Porsche works driver; Winner ALMS (LMP2), 8 wins; 1st Nürburgring 24 Hours (overall); 3rd Le Mans 24 Hours (overall)
2006 Porsche works driver; 3rd ALMS (LMP2), 4 wins; Le Mans 24 Hours
2005 Porsche works driver; 2nd ALMS (GT2), 4 wins; 4th Le Mans 24 Hours (GT2)
2004 Porsche works driver; 4th ALMS (GT); 2nd Sebring 12 Hours (ALMS, GT); 3rd Le Mans 24 Hours (GT); 1st Spa 24 Hours (N-GT); 1st Monza (LMES, LMP1)
2003 3rd Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland; 1st Spa 24 Hours (overall); 1st Petit Le Mans (ALMS, GT)
2002 2nd Euro Formula 3000; 1st 1000 km Suzuka (GT); 1st Spa 24 Hours (N-GT); 2nd Le Mans 24 Hours (GT); 3rd Daytona 24 Hours (GT); 1st Donington (FIA GT, N-GT)
2001 2nd Le Mans 24 Hours (GT); 1st Estoril (ELMS, GT); 2nd Vallelunga (ELMS, GT); 5th Euro Formula 3000
2000 6th French Formula 3 Championship
1999 International Formula 3000 Championship; 5th Formula Palmer Audi Series
1998 French Formula 3 Championship
1997 3rd French Formula Renault; 1st Zhuhai (Formula Renault); 2nd Macao (Formula Renault)
1996 9th French Formula Renault
1995 4th French Formula Renault Campus Cup
1994 1st Volant Elf ACO in Le Mans