Michelin, the tire manufacturer, released this past Thursday a 6 minutes video showing some of what happened in the back scenes at the 2020 24 Hours of Le Mans 🏁.
1996 Porsche TWR WSC-95 #7 Pilots: S. Johansson, M. Alboreto, T. Kristensen Team: Joest Porsche Racing Race: 1st GC (LMP class) at Le Mans in 1997 Spark - 43LM97 (resin)
Don’t think anyone will say it was a bad race, but it was certainly atypical. The pandemic forced it to be closed to the public, so there were no fans and only the technical pre-race events happened. The pre-race parade and all the fan events did not happen, and media coverage was limited. So all in all a very peculiar race compared to the traditional “Le Mans experience”.
Petrolicious wrote a very nice article about this year’s race, and touches exactly on those points. In the future people will look back and see 2020 as the last LMP1 race, where the TS050 won it’s third Le Mans in a row. But for us experiencing all this first hand and live, it sure was something strange.
Predictably, Toyota won at Le Mans this year again. With no other big manufacturer in the fight, it was just a matter of how many laps would they finish in front of the smaller teams. Granted, to win at Le Mans you first have to finish the race, and the TS050’s reliability was top-notch. Kudos to Rebellion, that managed a most deserved second place. Still, an eerie race, with the empty grand stands and only team personnel or track officials at the podium 😯.
Well, that was the last time a LMP1 car raced at La Sarthe. Next year we will see the debut of the Hypercar class, and lets hope that we will see more competition in the top class.
1976 Porsche 934 Pilots: A. Pallavicini, H. Müller, M. Vanoli Team: Lubrifilm Racing Team Race: 4th GC (1st in Group 4 class) at Le Mans in 1979 Spark - S3431 (resin)
Oh yes, the 88th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans is coming! This Saturday! Due to the pandemic it will be closed to the public, but at least everyone can watch it online. Head over to 24h-Le Mans.com for the latest news and full grid.
1968 Porsche 907 LH Pilots: D. Spoerry, R. Steinman Team: Squadra Tartaruga Race: 2nd GC (1st in P 3.0 class) at Le Mans in 1968 Spark - S3480(resin)
I found this video on the Porsche 917 Facebook group that I follow. The author made a homage to all the pilots who lost their lives at the track, using footage from “Le Mans” to a soundtrack from George Harrison, “Faster”. Fantastic music and footage, just a shame that he accelerated the video a bit (10%?) in relation to the actual movie. One of the key aspects of “Le Mans” was that both McQueen and Lee H. Katzin did not want accelerated images for the racing scenes. At the time, a common trick to simulate speed was to speed up the camera a bit.
Still, AWESOME tune and footage.
Back in October last year I wrote about Bentley making a brand new 1929 Bentley Blower. The plan was to produce 12 new cars that are exact replicas of the original model. For that, a specialized team at Crewe, in the UK, took apart the second car of the 1929 “Team Blower” and laser-scanned every single part of the car. Recently Bentley showed photos of some of the new parts already made for the prototype model.
From the images that Bentley released, the new “Continuation Series” car will look absolutely fantastic. The cars are expected to be available by 2021, and all 12 are already spoken for. As I said before, sometimes it’s really nice to be rich…
2008 Porsche 911 (997) GT3 RSR “iBird” Pilots: J. van Lagen, M. Goosens, M. Holzer Team: ProSpeed Competition Race: 23rd GC (LMGTE-Pro class) at Le Mans in 2011 Spark - S3416 (resin)