The first round of the 2018-2019 Super Season of the World Endurance Championship (FIA WEC) was fiercely competitive, with the action coming down to tenths of a second, especially in LMP1 and LMGTE Am. Now on to the 86th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans on June 16th and 17th!
- David Floury, ORECA Group Technical Director, shared a juicy anecdote about the 2010 1,000 Kilometers of Spa-Francorchamps:"Stories about Spa, I have a few, but one stands out. In 2010, we were participating in the 1,000 Kilometers of Spa with the Peugeot 908. Olivier Panis made contact at the Raidillon with…a Rebellion! The impact was violent and made retirement unavoidable. He was disappointed. He left the circuit before the finish and asked me to keep him informed about the damage to the car. After the race, as we were waiting for the tow truck, a truck parked in front of the garage, transporting a Peugeot...106! Everyone busted out laughing. We took a photo with the whole team acting as if we were unloading the car. I sent it to Olivier and wrote, 'We didn't realize you had changed the car that much!'"
- 14 is the number of circuits utilized by Aston Martin Racing to develop the all-new Vantage fielded in the LMGTE Pro class! Two of the cars will take the start at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
- Following the incident for Pietro Fittipaldi at the wheel of DragonSpeed's #10 BR Engineering BR1-AER during qualifying, the car was withdrawn from the race. The driver submitted to a successful leg operation.
Seen in the paddock:
- Jean Todt, president of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), wanted to attend the first round of the 2018-2019 Super Season of the World Endurance Championship (FIA WEC). He was joined by Richard Mille, the new president of the FIA Endurance Commission, who waved the green flag for the start of the race.
- Jacques Nicolet, the owner of Onroak Automotive, designer of the Ligier LMP2s, was present to cheer on Jack Leconte's team, Larbre Compétition, fielding a Ligier JS P217-Gibson for the trio Romano Ricci, Erwin Creed and Le Mans native Julien Canal.
- The head of ORECA, Hugues de Chaunac, was extremely busy dealing with two Rebellion R13 LMP1s built by his company, and the six ORECA 07s entered in the LMP2 class.
- The owner of WRT, Belgian native Vincent Vosse also attended the race. He runs Audi R8 LMSs in the Blancpain Endurance Series and has competed at the 24 Hours of Le Mans (from 1999 to 2005) five times, with as best result a fourth place finish in his class the final year with a Ferrari 550 GTS Maranello fielded by Larbre Compétition.
- David Richards, the owner of Prodrive, an outfit that develops Aston Martin in endurance, came to support his troops and it paid off. The top two spots were taken by the #98 and #90 Vantages in the LMGTE Am class.
PHOTO (Copyright - MPS Agency): The #50 Ligier JS P217-Gibson of Larbre Compétition finished seventh in the LMP2 class.