Cars and drivers ready for 24 hours of Le Mans 2018

The drivers racing at Le Mans 24 2018 (Photo by Melissa Warren)After two days of scrutineering, all 60 cars and 180 drivers are now ready for the 86th 24 Hours of Le Mans.


The two scrutineering sessions took place on Sunday 10thand Monday 11th June on Place de la République in the city centre. The first car to undergo the mandatory pre-race checks was the LMP2 #23 Ligier JSP217 and the final cars on Monday were the four LMGTE Pro Ford GT cars.

The fans experienced very changeable conditions this year but even the rain did not dampen their enthusiasm to see Le Mans rookies, Formula One World Champions Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso. Button will partner Vitaly Petrov and Mikhail Alenshin in the #11 SMP Racing car while Alonso will compete alongside Sebastien Buemi and Kazuki Nakajima in the #8 Toyota.

This year Alonso is aiming to win the 24 hour race as part of his ambition to clinch the triple crown. The triple crown was first mentioned after Graham Hill won the 1972 Le Mans 24 with Henri Pescarolo in the Matra. The Brit had managed to win the Indy 500, the 24 Hours and the F1 world championship.

Opinion differs as to what makes up the triple crown as some believe it should contain the F1 world title but some consider winning the F1 Monaco GP qualifies towards the honour.

Although not an F1 world champion, Juan Pablo Montoya won the Monaco GP in 2003 and the Indy 500 in 2000 and 2015. He could therefore become the first driver since Hill to be listed among the winners of all three races.

Although the overall winners of last year’s race are not returning to defend their title as Porsche bowed out from the WEC’s LMP1 division after winning a third successive Le Mans with its 919 Hybrid, Porsche celebrates its 70th anniversary this year. The team have brought four cars to compete in the GTE Pro category and two cars #71 and #72 will race with iconic livery.

AF Course Ferrari team cars 71, 52 and 51 (Photo by Melissa Warren)  2018 Toyota drivers (Photo by Melissa Warren) Corvette team cars 63 and 64 (Photo by Melissa Warren) Porsche no 80 Erik Maris, Christina Nielsen and Fabio Babini (Photo by Melissa Warren) Toyota team cars 7 and 8 (Photo by Melissa Warren) United Autosports cars 22 and 32 (Photo by Melissa Warren) 

 

 

 

Another Porsche to watch is the #80 driven by Danish driver Christina Nielsen and team mates Fabio Babini and Erik Maris. The only woman competing in this year’s race took part in Le Mans in 2016 and 2017 driving a Ferrari finishing 35th and 44th respectively.

The 180 drivers got together for the traditional driver photo on Tuesday morning and included ten previous winners; Lotterer, Fassler, Dumas, Bernhard, Bamber, Lammers, Rockenfeller, Duval, Tandy and Jani – who have 17 victories between them.

Scrutineering 6 (Photo by Melissa Warren) Christina Nielsen (Photo by Melissa Warren) Fernando Alonso, Kazuki Nakajima and Sebastien Buemi (Photo by Melissa Warren) SMP Racing car no 11 Button, Petrov and Aleshin (Photo by Melissa Warren)

 

 

 

On Tuesday evening the fans were invited into the pit lane for the 90 minute driver autograph session. The event gives fans the opportunity to meet their racing heroes and take home signed memorabilia.

All attention now turns to the track as the cars and drivers will take part in a four hour practice session on Wednesday (16.00-20.00) and then the first night qualifying session (22.00-00.00).

Thursday will see two qualifying sessions (19.00-21.00 and 22.00-00.00) before the eventual pole position announcement at midnight. The party atmosphere will come to town for the driver parade (17.00-18.30) on Friday as the build up to the race continues.

The 86th edition of the Le Mans 24 Hours begins at 15.00 on Saturday 16th June.

Participants
LMP1
1 REBELLION RACING CHE MICHELIN REBELLION R13 - GIBSON André LOTTERER DEU P Neel JANI CHE P Bruno SENNA BRA
3 REBELLION RACING CHE MICHELIN REBELLION R13 - GIBSON Thomas LAURENT FRA G Mathias BECHE CHE P Gustavo MENEZES USA
4 BYKOLLES RACING TEAM AUT MICHELIN ENSO CLM P1/01 - NISMO Oliver WEBB GBR G Dominik KRAIHAMER AUT G Tom DILLMANN FRA
5 CEFC TRSM RACING CHN MICHELIN GINETTA G60-LT-P1 – MECACHROME Charles ROBERTSON GBR S Michael SIMPSON GBR S Léo ROUSSEL FRA
6 CEFC TRSM RACING CHN MICHELIN GINETTA G60-LT-P1 – MECACHROME Oliver ROWLAND GBR P Alex BRUNDLE GBR G Oliver TURVEY GBR P
7 TOYOTA GAZOO RACING JPN MICHELIN TOYOTA TS050 - HYBRID Hybrid Mike CONWAY GBR P Kamui KOBAYASHI JPN P Jose Maria LOPEZ ARG P
8 TOYOTA GAZOO RACING JPN MICHELIN TOYOTA TS050 - HYBRID Hybrid Sébastien BUEMI CHE P Kazuki NAKAJIMA JPN P Fernando ALONSO ESP
10 DRAGONSPEED USA MICHELIN BR ENGINEERING BR1 - GIBSON Henrik HEDMAN SWE B Ben HANLEY GBR G Renger VAN DER ZANDE NLD
11 SMP RACING RUS MICHELIN BR ENGINEERING BR1 - AER Vitaly PETROV RUS P Mikhail ALESHIN RUS P Jenson BUTTON GBR
17 SMP RACING RUS MICHELIN BR ENGINEERING BR1 - AER Stéphane SARRAZIN FRA P Egor ORUDZHEV RUS G Matevos ISAAKYAN RUS

LMP2
22 UNITED AUTOSPORTS USA DUNLOP LIGIER JSP217 - GIBSON Philip HANSON GBR S Filipe ALBUQUERQUE PRT P Paul DI RESTA GBR
23 DE PANIS BARTHEZ COMPETITION FRA MICHELIN LIGIER JSP217 - GIBSON Timothé BURET FRA S Julien CANAL FRA S William STEVENS GBR
25 ALGARVE PRO RACING PRT DUNLOP LIGIER JSP217 - GIBSON Mark PATTERSON USA B Ate Dirk DE JONG NLD B Tacksung KIM KOR
26 G-DRIVE RACING RUS DUNLOP ORECA 07 - GIBSON Roman RUSINOV RUS G Andrea PIZZITOLA FRA S Jean-Eric VERGNE RA
28 TDS RACING FRA DUNLOP ORECA 07 - GIBSON François PERRODO FRA B Matthieu VAXIVIERE FRA G Loïc DUVAL FRA
29 RACING TEAM NEDERLAND NLD MICHELIN DALLARA P217 - GIBSON Frits VAN EERD NLD B Giedo VAN DER GARDE NLD P Jan LAMMERS NLD
31 DRAGONSPEED USA MICHELIN ORECA 07 - GIBSON Roberto GONZALEZ MEX S Pastor MALDONADO VEN P Nathanaël BERTHON FRA
32 UNITED AUTOSPORTS USA DUNLOP LIGIER JSP217 - GIBSON Hugo DE SADELEER CHE S William OWEN USA S Juan Pablo MONTOYA COL
33 JACKIE CHAN DC RACING CHN DUNLOP LIGIER JSP217 - GIBSON David CHENG USA S Nicholas BOULLE USA S Pierre NICOLET FRA
34 JACKIE CHAN DC RACING CHN DUNLOP LIGIER JSP217 - GIBSON Ricky TAYLOR USA P Côme LEDOGAR FRA P David HEINEMEIER-HANSSON DNK
35 SMP RACING RUS DUNLOP DALLARA P217 - GIBSON Victor SHAITAR RUS S Harrison NEWEY GBR S Norman NATO FRA
36 SIGNATECH ALPINE MATMUT FRA DUNLOP ALPINE A470 - GIBSON Nicolas LAPIERRE FRA P Andre NEGRAO BRA G Pierre THIRIET FRA
37 JACKIE CHAN DC RACING CHN DUNLOP ORECA 07 - GIBSON Jazeman JAAFAR MYS G Nabil JEFFRI MYS S Weiron TAN MYS
38 JACKIE CHAN DC RACING CHN DUNLOP ORECA 07 - GIBSON Ho Pin TUNG NLD G Stéphane RICHELMI MCO G Gabriel AUBRY FRA
39 GRAFF-SO24 FRA DUNLOP ORECA 07 - GIBSON Vincent CAPILLAIRE FRA S Jonathan HIRSCHI CHE G Tristan GOMMENDY FRA
40 G-DRIVE RACING RUS DUNLOP ORECA 07 - GIBSON James ALLEN AUS S Jose GUTIERREZ MEX S Enzo GUIBBERT FRA
44 EURASIA MOTORSPORT PHL DUNLOP LIGIER JSP217 - GIBSON Andrea BERTOLINI ITA P Niclas JÖNSSON SWE S Tracy KROHN USA
47 CETILAR VILLORBA CORSE ITA DUNLOP DALLARA P217 - GIBSON Roberto LACORTE ITA B Giorgio SERNAGIOTTO ITA S Luiz Felipe NASR BRA
48 IDEC SPORT FRA MICHELIN ORECA 07 - GIBSON Paul LAFARGUE FRA S Paul Loup CHATIN FRA G Memo ROJAS MEX
50 LARBRE COMPETITON FRA MICHELIN LIGIER JSP217 - GIBSON Erwin CREED FRA B Romano RICCI FRA B Thomas DAGONEAU FRA

LM GTE Pro
51 AF CORSE ITA MICHELIN FERRARI 488 GTE EVO Alessandro PIER GUIDI ITA P James CALADO GBR P Daniel SERRA BRA
52 AF CORSE ITA MICHELIN FERRARI 488 GTE EVO Toni VILANDER FIN P Antonio GIOVINAZZI ITA P Luis Felipe DERANI BRA
63 CORVETTE RACING - GM USA MICHELIN CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R Jan MAGNUSSEN DNK P Antonio GARCIA ESP P Mike ROCKENFELLER DEU
64 CORVETTE RACING - GM USA MICHELIN CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R Oliver GAVIN * GBR P Tommy MILNER USA P Marcel FÄSSLER CHE
66 FORD CHIP GANASSI TEAM UK USA MICHELIN FORD GT Stefan MÜCKE DEU P Olivier PLA FRA P Billy JOHNSON USA
67 FORD CHIP GANASSI TEAM UK USA MICHELIN FORD GT Andy PRIAULX GBR P Harry TINCKNELL GBR P Tony KANAAN BRA
68 FORD CHIP GANASSI TEAM USA USA MICHELIN FORD GT Joey HAND USA P Dirk MÜLLER DEU P Sébastien BOURDAIS FRA
69 FORD CHIP GANASSI TEAM USA USA MICHELIN FORD GT Ryan BRISCOE AUS P Richard WESTBROOK GBR P Scott DIXON NZL
71 AF CORSE ITA MICHELIN FERRARI 488 GTE EVO Davide RIGON ITA P Sam BIRD GBR P Miguel MOLINA ESP
81 BMW TEAM MTEK DEU MICHELIN BMW M8 GTE Martin TOMCZYK DEU P Nicky CATSBURG NLD G Philipp ENG AUT
82 BMW TEAM MTEK DEU MICHELIN BMW M8 GTE Augusto FARFUS BRA P Antonio FELIX DA COSTA PRT P Alexander SIMS GBR
91 PORSCHE GT TEAM DEU MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Richard LIETZ AUT P Gianmaria BRUNI ITA P Frédéric MAKOWIECKI FRA
92 PORSCHE GT TEAM DEU MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Michael CHRISTENSEN DNK P Kevin ESTRE FRA P Laurens VANTHOOR BEL P
93 PORSCHE GT TEAM USA MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Patrick PILET FRA P Nick TANDY GBR P Earl BAMBER NZL
94 PORSCHE GT TEAM USA MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Romain DUMAS FRA P Timo BERNHARD DEU P Sven MÜLLER DEU
95 ASTON MARTIN RACING GBR MICHELIN ASTON MARTIN VANTAGE AMR Marco SØRENSEN DNK G Nicki THIIM * DNK P Darren TURNER GBR
97 ASTON MARTIN RACING GBR MICHELIN ASTON MARTIN VANTAGE AMR Alex LYNN GBR P Maxime MARTIN BEL P Jonathan ADAM GBR

LM GTE Am
54 SPIRIT OF RACE CHE MICHELIN FERRARI 488 GTE Thomas FLOHR CHE B Francesco CASTELLACCI ITA S Giancarlo FISICHELLA ITA
56 TEAM PROJECT 1 DEU MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Jörg BERGMEISTER DEU P Patrick LINDSEY USA S Egidio PERFETTI NOR
61 CLEARWATER RACING SGP MICHELIN FERRARI 488 GTE Weng Sun MOK MYS B Matthew GRIFFIN IRL G Keita SAWA JPN
70 MR RACING JPN MICHELIN FERRARI 488 GTE Motoaki ISHIKAWA JPN B Olivier BERETTA MCO P Edward CHEEVER ITA
77 DEMPSEY-PROTON RACING DEU MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Matt CAMPBELL AUS G Christian RIED DEU B Julien ANDLAUER FRA
80 EBIMOTORS ITA MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Fabio BABINI ITA G Christina NIELSEN DNK S Erik MARIS FRA
84 JMW MOTORSPORT GBR MICHELIN FERRARI 488 GTE Liam GRIFFIN GBR B Cooper MACNEIL USA S Jeffrey SEGAL USA
85 KEATING MOTORSPORTS USA MICHELIN FERRARI 488 GTE Ben KEATING USA B Jeroen BLEEKEMOLEN NLD P Luca STOLZ DEU
86 GULF RACING GBR MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Michael WAINWRIGHT GBR B Benjamin BARKER GBR G Alexander DAVISON AUS
88 DEMPSEY-PROTON RACING DEU MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Matteo CAIROLI ITA G Khaled AL QUBAISI ARE B Giorgio RODA ITA
90 TF SPORT GBR MICHELIN ASTON MARTIN VANTAGE Salih YOLUC TUR B Euan HANKEY GBR G Charlie EASTWOOD GBR
98 ASTON MARTIN RACING GBR MICHELIN ASTON MARTIN VANTAGE Paul DALLA LANA CAN B Pedro LAMY PRT P Mathias LAUDA AUT
99 PROTON COMPETITION DEU MICHELIN PORSCHE 911 RSR Patrick LONG USA P Timothy PAPPAS USA B Spencer PUMPELLY USA 

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