AF Corse No. 51 Ferrari Wins the 24 Hours of Le Mans
The 24 Hours of Le Mans has concluded. Fans poured into Le Mans in record attendance with over 325,000 people visiting the venue over the weekend. The No. 51 AF Corse Ferrari 499P took the Hypercar crown. The No. 51 Ferrari fought tooth and nail to secure the win in their first return since 1973. The No. 08 Toyota Gazoo Racing GR010 had remained in striking distance since the 12 hour mark. However, at the 16 hour mark the No. 08 suffered a slow leaking puncture which saw the Ferrari ahead.
At the 20 hour mark the Ferrari experienced a hybrid charging issue that allowed the No. 08 car to retake the lead and make up lost time due to the puncture. However, the Ferrari was able to find the pace towards the end of the stent to pull away from the pack. The demise of the Toyota came after a spin out resulted in major damage to the car late in the race. While the Toyota Gazoo team was able to make repairs. The time lost proved to be too great despite finishing on the lead lap. After navigating back markers the Ferrari was able to create a 1m27.792 gap to the No. 08 Toyota.
Cadillac Held its Own in the Race
Behind the two leaders were the No. 02 and No. 03 Cadillac Racing V-Series.Rs. The two cars had basically held the P3 and P4 positions for the entire second half of the race pacing off of one another. The finish was incredible for the Cadillac camp’s V-series.R 24 Hours of Le Mans debut. In contrast the Porsche Penske team has a race to forget. The Porsches led the race early but issues plagued the team throughout the race.
The No. 75 car suffered a fuel pump failure early on. The No. 6 Porsche 963 crashed at Porsche Curves with Kevin Estre at the wheel. The car then suffered further lost time due to a battery charging issue. The sister No. 5 car was in contention for a top five place until a broken driveshaft in the race’s closing hour dropped the car to ninth. The car would not recover to fight for a top 5 finish. There were 3 Hypercar retirements in the race.
The No. 34 LMP2 car from Inter Europol Competition found the pace to edge out previous race leaders in their maiden 24 Hours of Le Mans. The class win comes after the team had secured their first podium at Spa. In second was the No. 41 Team WRT car who led the class for portions of the race. The top two cars were the only cars on the lead lap in the class. Duqueine Racing took P3 to round out the podium.
The No. 33 Corvette secured its third class win of the season at Le Mans. The Corvette was the only car in class to finish on the lead lap in a dominant performance for the American side. In second was the No. 25 RT by TF Aston martin Vantage and in third the GR Racing Porsche 911 RSR-19. The podium left just out of grasps for the P4 finishing No. 85 Iron Dames Porsche 911 as the team fell 5.312 seconds behind at the end of the race.
Full Race Results are Below
The FIA WEC will travel to Italy next for round five in Monza which takes place 7 – 9 July.