The off-season has been one of mixed emotions for Dennis Olsen. The 23-year old Norwegian ended the year as Intercontinental GT Challenge champion in November, but lost his Porsche Young Professional driver status in December. Olsen remains contracted to Porsche, and still hopes to become an official Porsche factory driver.
The decision seems strange from Porsche, as Olsen is a very promising talent. A burgeoning single-seater career ended at Formula Renault Eurocup, before switching to Porsche Carrera Cup in 2016. He has since won that title in 2017, along with second in Porsche Supercup that same year.
For now not much has changed for Olsen, as I asked him about his preparations for the upcoming season.
How happy are you to be back with Pfaff Motorsport for the Rolex 24?
I’m very excited to be back with Pfaff for the Rolex 24 – after a strong first season where they gained a lot of experience I’m very confident in the whole crew and also in the car we are bringing to the 24.
How tough was it to recover from losing your Porsche young professional status despite a good 2019 season?
It was for sure not the best time of my career, but I do still feel strong and prepared to show them that I am worth keeping as their driver – I had a great season last year and I’m looking to have a even stronger one this year using all the tools I learnt last year.
How was the Roar test for the #9 team?
The Roar was very positive for us, we managed to find a good balance for the long runs and the crew did good after having a winter break.
Who are your main class rivals at the Rolex 24 this year?
I think we will see after the first few hours who is our Main rivals, but looking at the Roar the Lambo, Lexus and Acura seems strong.
Are you likely to do more endurance rounds with Pfaff this year?
Yes, I will do the whole championship for Pfaff together with Zach Robichon.
How confident are you that you can become a Porsche factory driver in the coming years and what would that mean for you?
I hope that they can see my qualities and hopefully I will become a factory driver soon – with the performance I had last year, and also the consistency to win championships means that I know whats needed to win the titles. I love to race, and I want to keep doing this for a long time on the highest level possible. I’m a racer.
What are your racing plans for 2020?
Until now it’s just IMSA confirmed, but I’m confident that there will be more coming soon.
I would like to extend my thanks to Dennis for taking the time to answer these questions, and wish the #9 team the best of luck this weekend. Find me on Twitter @JWjournalism if you liked this article.