ILMC, LMS: Imola 6H entry list, event details.

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ILMC - Imola six hours poster.

LMP1

  • 1 Audi Sport Team Joest – Audi R18 TDi – Bernhard/Fässler
  • 2 Audi Sport Team Joest – Audi R18 TDi – McNish/Kristensen.
  • 7 Peugeot Sport Total – Peugeot 908 – Bourdais/Davidson.
  • 8 Peugeot Sport Total – Peugeot 908 – Montagny/Sarrazin.
  • 12 Rebellion Racing – Lola B10/60 Coupé-Toyota – Prost/Jani.
  • 13 Rebellion Racing – Lola B10/60 Coupé-Toyota – Belicchi/Boullion
  • 15 OAK Racing – OAK Pescarolo-Judd – Moreau/Ragues.
  • 16 Pescarolo Team – Pescarolo-Judd – Collard/Tinseau.
  • 18 Guess Racing Europe – Lola B09/80 Coupé-Judd – Ebbesvik/Ducote/Marcelli.
  • 23 MIK Corse – Zytek 09 – Cortes/Geri/Piccini.

LMP2

  • 26 SignaTech Nissan – Oreca03-Nissan – Mailleux/Ordoñez/Ayari.
  • 33 Level 5 Motorsports – Lola-HPD – Tucker/Bouchut/Barbosa.
  • 35 OAK Racing – OAK Pescarolo-Judd – Barlesi/Da Rocha/Lafargue.
  • 36 RML – HPD ARX-01d – Newton/Erdos/Collins.
  • 39 PeCom – Lola B11/40 – Judd – Companc/Russo/Kaffer.
  • 40 Race Performance – Oreca 03-Judd – Frey/Meichtry/TBA.
  • 41 Greaves Motorsport – Zytek Z11SN-Nissan – Ojjeh/Kimber-Smith/Lombard.
  • 42 Strakka Racing – HPD ARX-01d – Leventis/Watts/Kane.
  • 43 RLR MSport – MG Lola EX265-Judd – Gates/Garofall/Philipps.
  • 44 Extreme Limit AM Paris – Norma M200P-Judd – Rosier/Basso.
  • 45 Boutsen Energy Racing – Oreca 03-Nissan – Kraihamer/De Crem.
  • 46 TDS Racing – Oreca 03 – Nissan – Beche/Thiriet/Firth.
  • 49 OAK Racing –  OAK Pescarolo-Judd – Nicolet/Hein.

GTE-PRO

  • 51 AF Corse – Ferrari F458 Italia – Fisichella/Bruni.
  • 55 BMW Motorsport – BMW M3 – Farfus/Müller.
  • 56 BMW Motorsport – BMW M3 – Werner/Lamy.
  • 58 Luxury Racing – Ferrari F458 Italia – Jakubowski/Beltoise.
  • 59 Luxury Racing – Ferrari F458 Italia – Ortelli/Makowiecki.
  • 64 Lotus JetAlliance – Lotus Evora – Slingerland/Rich/Lichtner-Hoyer.
  • 65 Lotus JetAlliance – Lotus Evora – Rossiter/Mowlem/Hirschi.
  • 66 JMW Motorsport – Ferrari F458 Italia – Bell/Walker.
  • 71 AF Corse – Ferrari F458 Italia – Melo/Vilander.
  • 75 ProSpeed Competition – Porsche 911 RSR (997) – Goossens/Holzer.
  • 76 IMSA Matmut – Porsche 911 RSR (997) – Pilet/Henzler.
  • 77 Felbermayr-Proton – Porsche 911 RSR (997) – Lieb/Lietz.
  • 79 JOTA – Aston Martin Vantage – Hancock/Dolan.
  • 89 Hankook Team Farnbacher – Ferrari F458 Italia – Farnbacher/Simonsen.

GTE-AM

  • 50 Larbre Competition – Corvette C6-ZR1 – Bornhauser/Gardel/Canal.
  • 57 Krohn Racing – Ferrari F430 – Krohn/Jönsson/Rugolo.
  • 61 AF-Corse – Ferrari F430 – Perazzini/Cioci/Lémeret.
  • 62 CRS Racing – Ferrari F430 – Ehret/Lynn/Wills.
  • 63 Proton Competition – Porsche 911 RSR (997) – Long/Roda/Ried.
  • 67 IMSA Matmut – Porsche 911 RSR (997) – Narac/Armindo.
  • 82 CRS Racing – Ferrari F430 – Hummel/Christodoulou/Quaife.
  • 88 Felbermayr Proton – Porsche 911 RSR (997) – Felbermayr Snr (!)/Felbermayr Jnr/Miller.

FLM

  • 91 Hope Racing – Oreca FLM-09 – Moro/Shanqi/Graves.
  • 92 Neil Garner Motorsport – Oreca FLM-09 – Hartshorne/Keating/Keen.
  • 93 Genoa Racing –  Oreca FLM-09 – Petersen/Julian/Zugel.
  • 95 Pegasus Racing –  Oreca FLM-09 – Schultis/Simon/Schell.
  • 99 JMB Racing –  Oreca FLM-09 – Rodriguez/Menahem/TBA.

LMP1: 9   LMP2: 13   GTE-PRO: 14   GTE-AM: 8   FLM: 5   Total: 49.

Coverage information:

 – Weekend schedule.

 – Live video.

 – Live audio (Radio Le Mans).

 Live timing.



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ILMC: 2011 entry list revealed.

Intercontinental Le Mans Cup Logo.

Entries for the 2011 running of the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup were today revealed. Announced during the lead up to the ACO’s unveiling ceremony for Le Mans 24 Hour entries, the 2011 ILMC entry list boasts a healthy field of 26 competitors, yielding both factory and privateer representation from eleven auto manufacturers.

Entry listings can be seen in full below.

LMP1

  • AudiSport Team Joest – Audi R18 – Timo Bernhard/Marcel Fässler.
  • AudiSport Team Joest – Audi R18 – Tom Kristensen/Allan McNish.
  • Team Peugeot Total – Peugeot 908 – Anthony Davidson/TBA.
  • Team Peugeot Total – Peugeot 908 – Stephane Sarrazin/Franck Montagny.
  • Hope Racing – Oreca 01-Lehmann – Steve Sacchia/Olivier Lombard.
  • Rebellion Racing – Lola B10/60-Toyota – Nicolas Prost/Neel Jani.
  • OAK Racing – OAK Pescarolo-Judd – Matthieu Lahaye/Guillaume Moreau.
  • OAK Racing – OAK Pescarolo-Judd – Richard Hein/Jacques Nicolet.
  • Aston Martin Racing – AMR-ONE – Stefan Mücke/Darren Turner.
  • Oreca-Matmut – Peugeot 908 HDI-FAP – Nicolas Lapierre/Loic Duval.

LMP2

  • SignaTech-Nissan – Oreca03-Nissan – Franck Mailleux/TBA.
  • OAK Racing – OAK Pescarolo-Judd – Frederich Da Rocha/Patrice Lafarque.
  • Level5 Motorsports – Lola B10/80-HPD Coupe – Scott Tucker/Christophe Bouchut.

GTE-PRO

  • AF-Corse – Ferrari 458 Italia – Giancarlo Fisichella/Gianmaria Bruni.
  • BMW Motorsport – BMW M3 E92 – Augusto Farfus/TBA.
  • BMW Motorsport – BMW M3 E92 – Andy Priaulx/TBA.
  • Luxury Racing – Ferrari 458 Italia – Francois Jakubowski/Anthony Beltoise.
  • Luxury Racing – Ferrari 458 Italia – Stephane Ortelli/Frederic Makowiecki.
  • Lotus Jet Alliance – Lotus Evora GT2 – Vitus Eckbert/TBA.
  • Lotus Jet Alliance – Lotus Evora GT2 – Lukas Lichtner Hoyer/TBA.

GTE-AM

  • Larbre Competition – Chevrolet Corvette C6.R – Patrick Bornhauser/Julien Canal.
  • Krohn Racing – Ferrari F430 GT2 – Tracy Krohn/Nicolas Jönsson.
  • Gulf AMR Middle-East – Aston Martin Vantage – Fabien Giroix/Roald Goethe.
  • AF-Corse – Ferrari F430 GT2 – Piergiuseppe Perazzini/Marco Cioci.
  • CRS Racing – Ferrari F430 GT2 – Pierre Ehret/Shaun Lynn.
  • Proton Competition – Porsche 997 GT3-RSR – Richard Lietz/Horst Felbermayr.

LMP1: 10  LMP2: 3   GTE-PRO: 7   GTE-AM: 6   Total: 26

ALMS: Road America Results.

ALMS LogoRound seven of the 2010 American Le Mans series saw a resurgence of power in both LMP and GT categories. DraysonRacing achieved victory at the hands of young-ace, Johnny Cocker. Cocker’s last lap heroics enabled the team to take their maiden steps in victory lane. Podium finishes for both Cytosport and Highcroft entries ensure the championship race remains in contention.

In the GT category it was all about BMW and Rahal Letterman Racing. After a season of successful finishes, the team managed their first victory of the 2010 season courtesy of Dirk Müller and Joey Hand. Finishing a close second to the #90 BMW squad, Flying Lizard #45 extended their championship lead over rivals, Risi Competizione to a margin of eighteen points (previously eight).

Result listings can be seen in full below.

Pos. No. Cat. Drivers L. Gap Time Best Veh
1 8 P Drayson)/

Cocker*

69 -.— 2:45:15.756 1:52.420 Lola B09 60
2 6 P (Bernhard)/

Graf*

69 1.051 2:45:16.807 1:54.165 Porsche RS Spyder
3 1 P Brabham*/

(Pagenaud)

69 4.915 2:45:20.671 1:54.364 HPD ARX-01c
4 16 P (Dyson)/

Smith*

69 6.062 2:45:21.818 1:54.335 Lola B09 86 Mazda
5 99 PC Jeannette*/

(Julian)

67 2 Laps 2:47:03.672 2:02.189 Oreca FLM09
6 52 PC (Gonzalez)/

Diaz*

67 2 Laps 2:47:25.278 2:01.331 Oreca FLM09
7 90 GT Mueller/

(Hand*)

66 3 Laps 2:46:40.026 2:08.585 BMW M3 GT
8 45 GT (Bergmeister*)/

Long

66 3 Laps 2:46:42.643 2:08.494 Porsche 911 RSR
9 4 GT (Beretta)/

Gavin*

66 3 Laps 2:46:44.971 2:08.014 46 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1
10 3 GT Magnussen*/(

O’Connell)

66 3 Laps 2:46:53.376 2:08.591 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1
11 02 GT (Brown*)/

Cosmo

66 3 Laps 2:46:57.724 2:08.603 Ferrari 430 GT
12 62 GT (Melo*)/

Bruni

66 3 Laps 2:47:00.946 2:08.297 Ferrari 430 GT
13 95 PC Tucker/

(Wallace*)

66 3 Laps 2:47:02.433 2:02.728 Oreca FLM09
14 61 GT Salo/

(Kaffer*)

66 3 Laps 2:47:04.091 2:09.260 Ferrari 430 GT
15 01 GT Sharp/

(van Overbeek*)

66 3 Laps 2:47:11.984 2:09.022 Ferrari 430 GT
16 44 GT Law/

(Neiman*)

66 3 Laps 2:47:15.559 2:09.425 47 Porsche 911 RSR
17 17 GT Sellers/

(Henzler*)

65 4 Laps 2:45:23.251 2:10.007 Porsche 911 RSR
18 54 GTC (Pappas)/

Bleekemolen*

64 5 Laps 2:47:11.414 2:15.167 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
19 69 GTC (Rodriguez)/

Bieker*

63 6 Laps 2:45:32.785 2:16.447 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
20 88 GTC (Lewis*)/

Rice

63 6 Laps 2:46:38.188 2:16.852 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
21 23 GTC Sweedler/

(Kapudija*)

63 6 Laps 2:47:05.216 2:17.036 55 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
22 63 GTC (Ende)/

Lally*

63 6 Laps 2:47:22.677 2:15.600 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
23 28 GTC (Beggs)/

Baron

61 8 Laps 2:47:20.521 2:18.095 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
24 40 GT (Murry*)/

A.Robertson/

D.Robertson

59 10 Laps 2:45:23.138 2:09.852 4 Doran Ford GT-R
25 12 P Willman/

Burgess/

(Mowlem*)

59 10 Laps 2:46:50.752 1:54.422 Lola B06 10
26 89 PC (Marcelli*)/

Ducote

47 22 Laps 2:05:39.228 2:02.170 Oreca FLM09
27 36 PC Montecalvo*/(

Zugel)

36 33 Laps 1:35:22.889 2:06.706 28 Oreca FLM09
28 48 GTC Miller*/

(Hines)

36 33 Laps 1:39:10.451 2:16.737 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
29 75 GT (Dalziel*)/

Goossens

26 43 Laps 1:07:25.248 2:11.926 Jaguar XKR
30 92 GT (Auberlen)/

Milner*

8 61 Laps 19:55.187 2:09.310 BMW M3 GT
31 55 PC (Tucker)/

Bouchut

8 61 Laps 19:55.425 2:07.620 Oreca FLM09
32 32 GTC (Curtis)/

Sofronas*

8 61 Laps 20:46.054 2:19.090 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
33 37 P (J.Field)/

C.Field

6 63 Laps 13:58.047 1:55.436 Lola B06 10

BMW Confirm ILMC Participation.

BMW Motorsports Schnitzer-run M3 E92 during the 2010 Le Mans 24H.

BMW Motorsport's Schnitzer-run M3 E92 during the 2010 Le Mans 24H. - Image Courtesy Marshall Pruett/Speedtv.com

Having experienced what many would consider a semi-successful season (on both sides of the Atlantic) thus far, BMW Motorsport has signaled it’s intention to participate in the inaugural running of the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup.

BMW Motorsport’s efforts will utilise the services of both US and European factory-supported teams. With Schnitzer coordinating efforts for the Bavarian marque at both Silverstone and Zuhai events. Driving duties will be handled by Dirk Werner and Jörg Müller.

The Petit Le Mans event will be coordinated by the US factory outfit, Rahal Letterman. Standard series driver lineups of Milner/Auberlen and Hand/Müller will apply with additional driver support in the form of works drivers Werner/Priaulx.

The announcement makes BMW the first of many GT marques to provide an official commitment to the ILMC manufacturers title.

ALMS: Round04 Miller Results (Final).

ALMS Logo

Final result listings for round four of the 2010 ALMS series can be seen below.

Pos. No. Cat. Drivers No. Laps Diff. Total Time Best time Make
1 1 P Brabham/ Pagenaud 91 2:45:43.162 1:36.482 HPD ARX 01c
2 8 P Cocker/ Pirro 91 19.116 2:46:02.278 1:36.291 Lola B09 60
3 6 P Pickett/   Graf 91 1:30.374 2:47:13.536 1:36.558 Porsche RS Spyder
4 37 P J. Field/     C. Field 88 3 Laps 2:47:12.417 1:37.379 Lola B06 10
5 55 PC Tucker/ Bouchut 86 5 Laps 2:46:52.423 1:45.170 Oreca FLM09*
6 99 PC Jeanette/ Zugel 85 6 Laps 2:46:02.126 1:43.881 Oreca FLM09
7 52 PC Figge/   Hyatt 85 6 Laps 2:46:02.126 1:43.881 Oreca FLM09
8 95 PC Tucker/ Wallace 85 6 Laps 2:47:05.272 1:45.868 Oreca FLM09
9 62 GT Melo/Bruni 85 6 Laps 2:47:12.299 1:48.756 Ferrari 430 GT
10 92 GT Auberlen/ Milner 85 6 Laps 2:47:33.478 1:48.937 BMW M3 GT
11 3 GT Magnussen/ O’Connell 84 7 Laps 2:46:05.056 1:49.244 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1
12 90 GT Mueller/ Hand 84 7 Laps 2:46:11.695 1:48.937 BMW M3 GT
13 45 GT Bergmeister/Long 84 7 Laps 2:46:14.842 1:48.787 Porsche 911 RSR
14 61 GT Fisichella/ Vilander 84 7 Laps 2:46:28.464 1:48.977 Ferrari 430 GT
15 01 GT Sharp/ Van Overbeek 83 8 Laps 2:46:31.610 1:48.677 Ferrari 430 GT
16 02 GT Brown/ Cosmo 83 8 Laps 2:47:04.837 1:49.944 Ferrari 430 GT
17 17 GT Sellers/ Henzler 83 8 Laps 2:47:32.639 1:49.901 Porsche 911 RSR
18 12 P Willman/ Burgess 82 9 Laps 2:47:00.705 1:40.970 Lola B06 10
19 4 GT Beretta/ Gavin 82 9 Laps 2:47:23.430 1:48.801 Chevrolet Corvette ZR1
20 44 GT Law/ Neiman 81 10 Laps 2:45:51.873 1:50.281 Porsche 911 RSR
21 54 GTC Pappas/ Bleekemolen 80 11 Laps 2:46:39.628 1:54.717 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
22 63 GTC Richard/ Lally 80 11 Laps 2:47:37.581 1:55.612 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
23 69 GTC Rodriguez/ Bieker 79 12 Laps 2:45:51.699 1:56.140 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
24 88 GTC Lewis/Vento 79 12 Laps 2:46:00.724 1:56.516 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
25 48 GTC Miller/Hines 78 13 Laps 2:46:43.478 1:54.434 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
26 28 GTC Beggs/ Baron 78 13 Laps 2:46:53.195 1:57.975 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
27 40 GT D. Robertson/ A. Robertson/ Murry 78 13 Laps 2:47:27.043 1:51.399 Doran Ford GT-R
28 32 GTC Curtis/ Safronas 78 13 Laps 2:47:27.540 1:56.052 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
29 23 GTC Sweedler/ Kapudija 77 14 Laps 2:46:36.283 1:56.642 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
30 166 P Dyson/ Smith 73 18 Laps 2:17:44.701 1:37.220 Lola B09 86 Mazda
31 75 GT Dalziel/ Goossens 57 34 Laps 2:46:13.858 1:53.195 Jaguar XKRS
32 89 PC Marcelli/ Wong 21 70 Laps 45:15.632 1:48.269 Oreca FLM09
33 80 GTC Gonzalez/ Diaz 5 86 Laps 11:22.336 1:59.195 Porsche 911 GT3 Cup
34 81 GTC Gonzalez/ Leitzinger Porsche 911 GT3 Cup

LMS: Algarve Entry List Released.

LMS_Tag_TabProvisional entry listings for round three of the Le Mans series were released this week and, despite early season optimistic showings during the opening two rounds of the season, the field has withered to a mere 32 entries.

The expected absence of Audi, Peugeot, and Aston Martin factory teams has left the once mighty LMP1 grid at a minimal four entries. Despite the lack of works presence, both Peugeot and Aston Martin will be represented by Oreca and Signature Plus privateer efforts. With most of the usual contenders present, LMP2 remains at a healthy 14 entrants and, with a wide variety of machinery once again on display the entertainment looks set to continue in the baby prototype category.

As predicted, the GT1 grid resembles a ghost town once more. Consisting of a mere two Saleen entries fielded by Larbre and Atlas-FX teams. Despite the omission of several cars (namely the #78/79 Schnitzer/BMW Motorsport entries), the GT2 grid continues to look mightily impressive with quality entries from both Porsche and Ferrari camps. The continued presence of JMW and Spyker Squadron entries providing additional manufacturer flavour.

LMP1

  • 008 Signature Plus – Lola Aston Martin  – Pierre Ragues / Franck Mailleux
  • 4 Team Oreca Matmut – Peugeot 908 HDi FAP – Olivier Panis / Nicolas Lapierre
  • 12 Rebellion Racing – Lola B10/60 Coupé-Rebellion – Nicolas Prost / Neel Jani
  • 13 Rebellion Racing – Lola B10/60 Coupé-Rebellion – Andrea Belicchi / Jean-Christophe Boullion

LMP2

  • 24 Oak Racing – Pescarolo-Judd – Mathieu Lahaye / Jacques Nicolet
  • 25 RML –  Lola HPD Coupé – Tommy Erdos / Mike Newton / Ben Collins
  • 35 Oak Racing – Pescarolo-Judd – Richard Hein / Guillaume Moreau
  • 39 KSM – Lola B08/47-Judd – Jean De Pourtales / Hideki Noda / Jonathan Kennard
  • 40 Quifel-ASM –  Ginetta-Zytek 09S – Miguel Amaral / Olivier Pla
  • 41 Team Bruichladdich – Ginetta-Zytek 09S – Karim Ojjeh / Tim Greaves / Thor-Christian Ebbesvik
  • 42 Strakka Racing – HPD ARX – 01 – Nick Leventis / Danny Watts / Jonny Kane
  • 43 Dams – (Formula Le Mans) Oreca 09 – Andrea Barlesi / Alessandro Cicognani / Gary Chalandon
  • 44 Dams – (Formula Le Mans) Oreca 09 – Jody Firth / Warren Hughes
  • 45 Boutsen Energy Racing – (Formula Le Mans) Oreca 09 – Dominik Kraihamer / Nicolas De Crem / Bernard Delhez
  • 46 JMB Racing – (Formula Le Mans) Oreca 09 – Peter Kutemann / Maurice Basso / John Hartshorne
  • 47 Hope Polevision Racing – (Formula Le Mans) Oreca 09 – Luca Moro / Steve Zacchia / Olivier Lombart
  • 48 Hope Polevision Racing – (Formula Le Mans) Oreca 09 – Christophe Pillon / Vincent Capillaire / Nico Verdonck
  • 49 Applewood Seven – (Formula Le Mans) Oreca 09 – Damien Toulemonde / Mathias Beche

GT1

  • 50 Larbre Competition – Saleen S7-R – Gabriele Gardel / Patrice Goueslard / Fernando Rees
  • 66 Atlas FX-Team FS – Saleen S7-R – Julien Schroyen / Carlo Van Dam / Adam Lacko

GT2

  • 75 Prospeed Competition – Porsche 997 GT3 RSR – Marco Holzer / Richard Westbrook
  • 76 IMSA Performance Matmut – Porsche 997 GT3 RSR – Raymond Narac / Patrick Pilet
  • 77 Team Felbermayr Proton – Porsche 997 GT3 RSR – Marc Lieb / Richard Lietz
  • 85 Spyker Squadron – Spyker C8 Laviolette GT2-R – Peter Dumberck / Jeroen Bleekemolen
  • 88 Team Felbermayr Proton – Porsche 997 GT3 RSR – Martin Ragginger / Christian Ried / Wolf Henzler
  • 89 Hankook Team Farnbacher – Ferrari F430 GT – Dominik Farnbacher / Allan Simonsen
  • 90 CRS Racing – Ferrari F430 GT – Pierre Ehret / Phil Quaife / Pierre Kaffer
  • 91 CRS Racing – Ferrari F430 GT – Andrew Kirkaldy / Tim Mullen
  • 92 JMW Motorsport – Aston Martin V8 Vantage – Robert Bell / Darren Turner
  • 94 AF Corse – Ferrari F430 GT – Luis Perez Companc / Matias Russo
  • 95 AF Corse – Ferrari F430 GT – Giancarlo Fisichella / Toni Vilander / Jean Alesi
  • 96 AF Corse – Ferrari F430 GT – Gianmaria Bruni / Jaime Melo

24 Heures Du Mans 2010 – Post Race Wrap.

Bourdais leads Peugeot's assault into turn one. - Image courtesy of Geoffroy Barre / leblogauto.com

Bourdais leads Peugeot's assault into turn one. - Image courtesy of Geoffroy Barre / leblogauto.com

A brutal display of style, glamour, and speed, the Le Mans 24 Hour manages to provide an atmospheric roller coaster ride of raw emotion unable to be matched by any other event the world over on a yearly basis.

This year’s edition of the event bore a special significance for many reasons. For both fans and competitors, 2010 would provide the swan song for a once titanic GT category now left stagnant as a result of lacking manufacturer interest. For GT1 class competitors it’s the end of an era. After providing a worthy stomping ground for a selection of the world’s greatest supercars for the better part of the last decade, the GT1 category will see its last year of competition at the 24 Hour.

LMP categories would also see the final running of current-spec machinery before a major regulations change is enforced for the 2011 season. Although fraught with attrition, the 2010 running of the 24 hour classic delivered one of the more bizarre, yet mesmerising renditions of the race in recent years.

Hour one of the event saw the use of several, extended caution periods resulting in multiple safety car deployments. The first of which would be caused by the retirement of both Autocon and Beechdean Mansell entries. Several laps later the premature (yet highly anticipated) return of Jaguar (in the form of US-based, JaguarRSR) would succumb to a similar fate as a result of electrical difficulties. An innocent casualty of the events, Joest would lose over 60sec to the overall leading Peugeots. The disparity due to a difference in running pace between two of the circuit’s safety cars.

Peugeot #2 of Sarrazin/Minassian/Montagny. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

Peugeot #2 of Sarrazin/Minassian/Montagny. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

Having set the benchmark for single-lap pace, Peugeot had stamped its dominance early in both practice and qualifying sessions. The reigning LMP1 champions would commence from positions one through four, tailed by the trio of Audi entries, and the petrol-engined LMP field (lead of course by AMR). Despite possessing an obvious performance advantage during the first half of the race, the Peugeot squad would again be haunted by reliability issues.

Drama would strike late in the third hour for the #3 Peugeot of Bourdais, Pagenaud, and Lamy. Having been swiftly summoned to pitlane, the French squad would set to work furiously, with idle team members and spare bodywork to maintain any means of disguising the nature of repair efforts taking place. The pole-setting chassis was officially retired as a result of a front suspension failure.

Peugeot maintained a 1-2-3 formation at the front of the field and, with three factory Audis now only a small margin behind, the goose chase for the overall lead was well underway. Frustration would set in over the next several hours for both Peugeot and Audi squads. Peugeot #1 would be forced to pitlane courtesy of a failed alternator late during the seventh hour. With maintenance costing the French team over 12 minutes, ultimately taking the reigning champions out of contention for victory.

Peugeot would continue to hold positions 1-2, Audi remaining in close pursuit with cars #9/8 only a small margin behind. All the while AMR cars continued to turn consistent laps without error in positions 7/8 to maintaining their lead over fellow petrol-powered LMP1 counterparts. By mid race distance it was the Oreca Peugeot to suffer issues.

The Peugeot #2 squad completes one of the more successful pit stops of the day. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

The Peugeot #2 squad completes one of the more successful pit stops of the day. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

The team’s #4 entry being forced to pitlane, leaking oil as a result of engine faults. The #4 later returned to the race, losing thirteen minutes as a result of the repairs. Only some four hours later, the race leading #2 Peugeot would suffer a dramatic engine blowout on the approach to Tertre Rouge, resulting in a second factory Peugeot retirement.

This occurrence would prove to be a turning point for the Audi squad, inheriting the lead as a result of the #2 Peugeot’s retirement. With cars #9/8 now running in positions 1/2 respectively, the Joest cars would begin to increase pace as Peugeot opted for an all or nothing approach to victory. Despite being over a lap down on the leaders, the #1 car (at at the time driven by Davidson) had been instructed to take necessary action in order to ensure Peugeot victory (even at the cost of lower class participant’s safety).

Peugeot’s problems would only worsen throughout the remaining hours. While managing to reduce the margin to the leading Audi to under a lap, the sole factory #1 Peugeot would ultimately suffer a similar fate as its sister cars. Retiring in the dying hours of the race as a result of an engine blowout (now thought to have been caused by a faulty turbo).

With all factory cars now out of the running, the responsibility of flying the French marque’s flag would be left to the Oreca squad, and the hands of talented rookie, Loic Duval. Had Duval’s pace been maintained a podium position would have been possible for the local team. Unfortunately for the Oreca team the #4 would suffer a similar fate to it’s factory cousins. The car failing midway through the 22nd hour of the race, taking with it any chance of a face saving finish for the French manufacturer.

The race winning #9 Audi of Rockenfeller/Dumas/Bernhard. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

The race winning #9 Audi of Rockenfeller/Dumas/Bernhard. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

Having not been able to compete with the single-pace set by their Peugeot rivals, the goal of would be to endure the imminent storm. Normally the fastest entry in the Joest camp, the #7 squad had suffered setup difficulties throughout practice and qualifying sessions, placing the car slightly off the pace of its #8/#9 sister cars.

The #7 would later suffer a delay early in the race as a result of a damaged BMW straying across the Porsche curves. Although not suffering any major damage, the #7 would be pitted for preventative maintenance. This unfortunate turn of events would shift the balance of power to the #9/8 Joest entries. Both of which would now be tasked with maintaining the chase for victory. The #9 crew had maintained consistent pace through the event, focusing on sustainable speed. The distinguished trio of Rockenfeller/Bernhard/Dumas would lead home cars #8/7 to secure an Audi 1-2-3 finish.

#42 ARX01c of Strakka racing. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

#42 ARX01c of Strakka racing. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

Setting a pace bordering on cruelty, LMP2 had promised to be an HPD dominated affair from the outset.

With HPD-powered entries qualifying 1-2-3, and managing average lap times over four seconds faster than the nearest class competitors, P2 regulars were in for a tough day at the office. Having beaten race favourites Highcroft to the class pole, Strakka had immediately stamped their position as the team to beat.

Having lead the race for 356 laps (to Highcrofts 11 laps-lead) the Strakka trio of Danny Watts/Jonny Kane/Nick Leventis would finish first in category, placing an excellent fifth overall (only laps behind first-home petrol LMP1 team Oreca) to take their maiden 24 hour victory and, in doing so, handing the ARX01c a victory on its LM24 debut. In addition to this, the teams HPD package also won Michelin’s GreenX challenge.

Highcroft's Marco Werner navigates the Ralentisseur chicane. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

Highcroft's Marco Werner navigates the Ralentisseur chicane. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

Overshadowed by a myriad of technical difficulties, from shrapnel induced tyre punctures, to oil leaks and water pressure issues, the Danbury, Connecticut-based squad managed a semi-successful 24 Hour debut. Despite the presence of reigning champion David Brabham, multiple Le Mans overall winner Marco Werner, and up and coming endurance star Marino Franchitti, the Highcroft team were unable to match the speed and reliability of their Trans-Atlantic cousins. Plagued by misfortunes throughout the event, Highcroft would minimise the gap to their Strakka counterparts to less than two laps on several occasions. A margin which would unfortunately never be regained

OAK racing, and RML would round off the LMP2 podium finishing second and third respectively. In the unexpected absence of the Highcroft team, RML’s position would secure HPD’s second debut podium finish.

YoungDriver AMR leads the GT1 field through the Dunlop Esses. - Image courtesy of Geoffroy Barre / leblogauto.com

YoungDriver AMR leads the GT1 field through the Dunlop Esses. - Image courtesy of Geoffroy Barre / leblogauto.com

Contesting their final year of Le Mans competition, the GT1 swansong was, at times trying and, although well and truly outclassed by their GT2 counterparts the once mighty supercar category managed to produce a fitting outcome.

Dominated in its early stages by Matech and MarcVDS entries (both teams suffering race ending mechanical failures during the first half of the race) the ailing eight car category (consisting of six GT1WC entries) saw the lead shared by no less than six different entries throughout duration the race.

Despite the obvious pace of the Ford, Corvette, and Aston Martin entries, reliability would once again prove to be a deciding factor. Although not the fastest car in its category (or the category below it), Le Mans veterans and fan favourites Larbre Competition would finish the race with minimal error to take first in class, in a fitting tribute to both the category and machinery.

#82 Risi entry enters the Mulsanne. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

#82 Risi entry enters the Mulsanne. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

Widely proclaimed as the new manufacturer stomping ground, and with seven marques present the GT2 category was set for a cracking battle. In typical Le Mans fashion, the Risi squad managed the surge to an early lead in the opening hours (despite having been relegated to the rear of the starting grid).

The team would go on to endure an intense battle with the P&M squad throughout hours six/seven. In an unfortunate twist, Risi would later suffer tranmission issues, forcing the #82 to pitlane for lengthy repairs, ruling them out of the chase for victory.

#63 Corvette of O'Connell/Magnussen/Garcia. - Image courtesy of Geoffroy Barre / leblogauto.com

#63 Corvette of O'Connell/Magnussen/Garcia. - Image courtesy of Geoffroy Barre / leblogauto.com

The #82 would later go on to retire as a result of the persisting difficulties. Leaving the P&M Corvette squad to dominate the category for what seemed like the majority of the event.

Running in 1/2 tandem for several hours, everything seemed to be going right for the American outfit. During a two hour period, disaster struck for the P&M team. The departure of the #63 P&M entry as a result of engine issues would leave the #64 to fly the remaining Corvette flag.

In a controversial incident, an impatient Anthony Davidson would attempt to pass the #64 Corvette entry of endurance veteran Emmanuelle Collard through the tight Porsche curves while on a late race charge for victory. This would cause Collard to lose control of the Corvette, sending the car spinning into nearby barriers. Suffering massive rear damage as a result of the impact, Collard would be forced to limp the severely damaged #64 back to pitlane where the team would furiously attempt a repair operation.

Davidson later commented on the incident in a bid to plead his innocence, only managing to insinuate Collard (amongst other GT competitors) had made intentional efforts to cause difficulty for the (then chasing) PeugeotSport team. Davidson retracted the statement/s in a later interview.

While the #64 did manage to return to the field, it would later retire as a result of engine issues similar to those suffered by the #63 car, leaving the justifiably distraught American team without any result.

A victim of late regulation changes, the #79 BMW Motorsport entry during the early hours of the race. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

A victim of late regulation changes, the #79 BMW Motorsport entry during the early hours of the race. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

A contender in its class, a fan favourite, and like many others, an unfortunate casualty. BMW’s return to La Sarthe was not as triumphant as many had originally hoped.

Having been hit with an increase in restrictor size (resulting in the loss of 10-15hp) upon arrival to La Sarthe, the manufacturer’s bid for victory would suffer a major setback from the outset. While down on single-lap pace, the aim of the Schnitzer squad was no doubt to endure the storm of inevitable attrition. A strategy adopted by the team during both Le Mans Series rounds.

Unfortunately for the Bavarians, sparks of promise were shown but reliable performance was not forthcoming. Suffering multiple tyre punctures (amongst other difficulties), the #79 would return to pitlane on several occasions during the opening hours of the race. The entry being officially retired after the eighth hour. The remaining #78 entry of Müller/Alzen/Farfus also experienced its fair share of difficulties but, despite tyre and engine difficulties would go on to finish sixth in category.

Felbermayr-Proton's class winning #77 entry of Lieb/Lietz/Henzler. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

Felbermayr-Proton's class winning #77 entry of Lieb/Lietz/Henzler. - Image courtesy Geoffroy Barre / endurance-magazine.fr

Maintaining a sustainable pace throughout the race and opting to focus on reliability, the #77 Felbermayr squad would inherit the class lead shortly after the late race departure of Corvette #64. Having run a flawless race to edge out Risi,P&M, and BMW entries, the #77 crew found themselves with a two lap lead over nearest placed rivals, Hankook Farnbacher #89, and BMS Scuderia Italia #97 with several hours still remaining.

The trio of Lieb/Lietz/Henzler would continue to lead for the remaining hours to finish a phenomenal eleventh overall, taking Felbermayr’s maiden 24 Hour victory and, after years of Ferrari domination, reclaiming the LM24 GT2 crown for Porsche. A fitting triumph for Le Mans most successful marque.

With the curtains now drawn and the race now run and won for another year, the Sportscar world sits back to ponder…only another 12 months until the madness begins all over again.

Images courtesy Geoffroy Barre // Endurance-Magazine.fr // leblogauto.com

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