LE MANS 24 HOURS 1996

15th - 16th June

48 starters 25 classified finishers

The Ferraari 333 was faster but failed to finish Porsche engined cars took the top 3 places. The works cars were 2nd & 3rd but a Joest prototype by TWR was the lead car on all but 18 laps.

CIRCUIT :

13.6 km lap. The Mulsanne straight broken up by two chicane.

REGULATIONS :

WSC sports prototypes max power 470-630bhp weight 888 kg fuel 80 litres width 16"

LMP2 sports prototypes max power 400-450bhp weight 620 kg fuel 80 litres width 12"

GT1 Gran Turismo max power 420-850bhp weight 900-1300 kg fuel 100 litres width 12"

GT2 Gran Turismo max power 380-590bhp weight 900-1300 kg fuel 100 litres width 14"

STARTERS :

48 cars : manufacturersJapan: 5 Toyotas, 2 Mazdas.:

Ferrari 6, Joest Porsche 2, Mazda 1, WR 2, Courage 3, Debora (failed before start), Nissan 2, McLaren 7, Sard 1, Toyota 1, Chevrolette 1, Porsche 12, Honda 1, Lister 1, Chrysler 4, Riley & Scott 1, Kremer 2, Marcos 1

SUMMARY :

The 3pm start was lead away by the 2 GT1 Porsches - by the end of the first hour Davey Jones lead. The Ferrari of vans went out running out of fuel after an hour and a half. At 2 hours Boutsen got the GT1 between the 2 TWRs. At six pm the GT1 & 2nd TWR are still swopping places for 2nd place to the Jones car.

With refuelling stops having less effect on the 333SP which now ran 6th on the same lap as the Albereto Porsche and Dalmas' GT1. in the coming hour the Pescarolo C36 will go by. Two problems struch the GT1 Porsches around 9pm the Stuck car collided with the Courage of Alliot and then the Dalmas car went into the sand at Mulsanne corner. In the pit time 3 McLarens went by. Going up to 10 pm Bellm McLaren was behind the two TWRs.

Midnight and the Kremer team were finished after a shunt at Indianapolis. The Courage team lost the chance to win in next hour as their leading car stopped on the circuit and had trouble getting going but the Alliot cat was 4th after going by the 333SP only Stuck was preventing a 1- 2 & 3 prototype run.

By mid race all GT ferrari's had gone.

In the early light Stuck push the GT1 to 3min 49.2 showing intent at an overall win but a 333SP with new gearbox decided on a 5 lap flat out run leaving the record at 3 min 46.958sec At 06-37am the Courage went into the Esses guardrail for good soon followed by the final Ferrari. Joest was lucky everything that went wrong struck only one of the cars.

As the finish approached it appeared less likely the GT1's could win. A crash between two McLaren - Raphanel and Bscher - let the Owen McLaren into 4th but 3 laps back on the GT1s. For the 2nd year running a first time entry won - the TWR-Porsche.

DISTANCE & RECORDS :

The overall distance and speed records were Reuter, Jones and Wurz covered a distance of 4814.4 Km at 200,600km/h. Eric Van der Poele gave Ferrari 333SP the fastest practice lap record in 3'46"838, a speed of 215.837 km/h - slower than last year. In the race the Joest Porsche car managed a 3'46"68 lap at an average of 215.99 to be fastest finisher but slower than '95 record the Ferrari 333SP's 3 min 46.958sec .

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Sports Car Races

Targa Florio 1963

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Le Mans 1930

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Author: ArchitectPage