Stéphane Ortelli began his racing career with kart racing and in 1989 moved to the French Formula Renault. In 1991 he received a cockpit in the French Formula 3 Championship, in which he first won the title in Class B and the following season finished in eleventh place in the overall standings. A year later, he drove 905 Spider Cup at Peugeot. In 1994 Ortelli in the French Touring Car Championship, in which he was out with a Peugeot 405 and ninth in a BMW 320i Aft.
In 1995, Ortelli with the sports car racing in contact when he with a Porsche 911 GT2 was allowed to participate in the 24- hour race at Le Mans for Larbre Compétition. The following season, he finally rose to in this motorsport discipline and played for different teams race in the BPR Global GT Series. With Konrad Motorsport, he was able to celebrate a 911 GT2 class victory at Brands Hatch in the Porsche. In such a vehicle Ortelli entered 1997 Roock Racing at several race of the FIA GT Championship. He scored class wins at the A1- Ring and Laguna Seca, reaching sixth place in the championship of the GT2 class. In addition, he was in two FIA GT races at the wheel of the Porsche 911 GT1 his team, with whom he scored a second place overall. With this vehicle, he took up also the 24- hour race at Le Mans, but the his team could not finish due to an accident. 1998 Ortelli continued to go for Roock Racing in the FIA GT Championship at the start. The season was less successful for him, a second place in the GT2 class, and a third place in the GT1 class were his best results. But the high point of his career was the 24 - hour race at Le Mans in the same year. As Porsche factory driver he succeeded in the Porsche 911 GT1 with Laurent Aiello, Allan McNish and the overall victory.
In 1999 Ortelli for the first time in the 24- hour race at Daytona, where he finished sixth in the GT2 class. Later in the season he took for Roock Racing Porsche 911 GT2 in the FIA GT Championship in part. With the aging vehicle, however, it became increasingly difficult to retract good results, and so Ortelli scored only two championship points. In 2000 he was able to record a success at Le Mans again when he reached with the same teammates like two years ago in the new Audi R8 from Joest Racing in second place. 2001 Ortelli driver at Team Freising motor sport in which he had some racing applications already in the last season was. The team now has a new Porsche 996 GT3 R into the smaller N- GT class. Ortelli drove it four times on the podium in his class and finished second in the drivers' standings to seventh place. In 2002, the dominance of the Freising - Porsche began in the smaller class of the FIA GT Championship, Ortelli was able to win the class victory in seven out of ten races, including the 24 Hours race at Spa -Francorchamps with Emmanuel Collard and Romain Dumas. At the end of the season Ortelli decided with a clear point lead in the championship. At the same time he also won the Porsche Supercup, in which he always achieved top rankings in previous years.
The 2003 season was a success for Ortelli. Furthermore, for driving Freising Motorsport reach him three class victories in the FIA GT Championship. The highlights of the season was the 24 - hour race at Spa-Francorchamps. Together with his teammate Marc Lieb and Romain Dumas was able to win the overall victory and thereby make even the more powerful GT cars behind Ortelli in the Porsche N -GT class. This was a unique event in the history of the FIA GT Championship. The title defense succeeded Ortelli successful and he shared the first place championship in Class N- GT with his teammate Marc Lieb. In 2004, Ortelli again three class victories in the FIA GT Championship, including going back to the 24-hour race in Spa -Francorchamps with Emmanuel Collard and Romain Dumas. In the battle for the drivers' title, however, Ortelli had to give this time narrowly to his teammates on the second Freising - Porsche, Sascha Maassen and Lucas Luhr, beaten. For his team Ortelli also drove in the newly established Le Mans Endurance Series, in which he was able to achieve class victory in two out of four races. In the drivers' standings but he had to give here also narrowly beaten. He first came to Freising also in Le Mans, where he was ranked second in his class. The season still remained despite several second-place finishes in the final accounts is not complete without success since awarded him the Porsche Cup for the best private driver.
Since Freising Motorsport withdrew from motorsport at the end of the 2004 season, beginning in 2005 Ortelli had no fixed cockpit. He played for Aston Martin Racing, the 12 - hour race at Sebring for the first installation of the new Aston Martin DBR9. With his team-mate Darren Turner and David Brabham, he scored a class win and fourth in the overall standings. Later he moved to ORECA in the Le Mans Endurance Series, in which he won the Audi R8 with Allan McNish a victory at Silverstone and two second places at the Nürburgring and Istanbul. This Ortelli reached the fourth place in the championship of the LMP1 class. In ORECA Audi He also drove in Le Mans, where he missed the podium with fourth place just barely with his teammates Franck Montagny and Jean -Marc Gounon. For the 2006 season, replaced ORECA the Le Mans prototype Audi R8 against the Saleen S7R the group GT1. With this vehicle Ortelli go with his teammate Soheil Ayari in the Le Mans Series, two class wins and as he reached the end of the season seventh in the drivers' standings. The 24 - hour race in Le Mans he denied, however, again at the wheel of an Aston Martin Racing DBR9 Aston Martin Racing. Ortelli finished the race with Pedro Lamy and Stéphane Sarrazin in tenth place in the overall standings.
2007 won Ortelli Soheil Ayari with teammate in the ORECA Saleen in four out of six races of the Le Mans Series. So they divided the drivers' title of the GT1 class. Ortelli and Ayari came also to contest the 24 - hour race at Le Mans, where the team was reinforced by Nicolas Lapierre. Ortelli finished the race with his teammates ranked 16th in the overall rating. After he had only participated in individual races in this series in recent years, Ortelli denied that same year also feature another full season in the FIA GT Championship. He drove for AF Corse with Gianmaria Bruni in the Ferrari F430 GT2 category three race victories. In the battle for the title Ortelli was defeated scarce and he eventually finished third in the drivers' championship the GT2 class.
2008 ORECA joined with the Courage - Oreca LC70 back to a Le Mans Prototype LMP1 category. In this vehicle Ortelli crashed hard in the second round of the Le Mans Series, the 1000-kilometer race at Monza. His vehicle suffered during braking of the chicane after the start -finish straight a fraction of the rear wing and turned, and it got under air, and took off and on several occasions about hitting flew across the track and was only lying on impact with the guardrail. This Ortelli also flew only a few centimeters on ahead of him Allan McNish in the Audi R10 TDI over. As if by a miracle Ortelli just broke the ankle in the accident. Due to injury, however, Ortelli had the 24- hour race at Le Mans pause and could only intervene in the event at the penultimate race of the Le Mans Series again.
The 2009 season began Ortelli with a third place along with Bruno Senna in the running of the Le Mans Series at Barcelona. After a failure in the race at Spa- Francorchamps Ortelli came with a new ORECA 01 on the 24- hour race at Le Mans. However, the race he could not finish with his teammates Bruno Senna and Tiago Monteiro due to engine damage. In the Le Mans Series Ortelli came into this season then no race more. He had another race still in the Porsche 997 GT3 RSR Track Speed Racing at the 24 -hour race in Spa- Francorchamps, but in which ultimately all vehicles of this type were disqualified.