When it comes to the 24 Hours of Le Mans, it’s hardly ever just about who has the fastest car on the track. Because at the end of the day, the race usually goes to the team that can stay out of trouble. And while Corvette Racing didn’t have any incredibly serious issues during this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans, the setbacks the team did have may have ultimately cost the team a GTE Pro Class victory.
For instance, the No. 73 car driven by Jan Magnussen, Antonio Garcia and Jordan Taylor, dropped a few laps off pace do to a faulty valve stem for the car’s air jack and twice being separated from its competitors by a safety car in the race’s opening 12 hours. Ultimately, the guys combined their driving efforts to climb back to second place. But the car was still a full lap behind the remaining AF Corse Ferrari 458 Italia that took victory in GTE Pro.
Meanwhile, the No. 74 car was running very strong during the beginning and middle of the race, but lost eight laps due to a slipped alternator belt and gearbox leak. Oliver Gavin, driving with Westbrook and Tommy Milner, had reported a low voltage reading and a burning smell inside the car near the halfway point. When the car came in to pit, the crew found the alternator belt covered oil. The car finished seven laps off the GTE Pro-leading Ferrari. Despite the win eluding the team, Corvette Racing was the only GTE Pro team with both cars finishing. Porsche came in third, while Aston Martin was fifth.
Even though we don’t cover the three automakers, this report can’t go without mentioning the drama that took place between Toyota, Porsche and Audi in the LMP1 category. Audi, the underdogs for once, managed to persevere through crashes during qualifying to run virtually trouble-free to go 1-2 overall, while Toyota had to settle for fourth place, with the pole-setting No. 7 TS040 Hybrid unable to finish after 15th hour electrical issues. Porsche’s No. 20 919 hybrid, with one of the drivers being former Formula 1 driver Mark Webber, also did not finish.