Ferrari wins crash-filled 2024 24 Hours of Le Mans

Ferrari took home overall victory on Sunday at an eventful 2024 24 Hours of Le Mans, making it back-to-back wins for the Italian marque which only made its return to the top level at the French classic last year after half a century away.

Ferrari had three 499P LMH cars in the premier Hypercar class, with the number 50 car driven by Antonio Fuoco, Miguel Molina, and Nicklas Nielsen the first to cross the checkered flag after 311 laps. At that point, there were another eight cars on the lead lap after the full 24 hours, which was an unmatched level of ­competitiveness.

Nielsen was behind the wheel for the final stint and was able to survive wet conditions, an issue with his door, and an investigation for an unsafe pit stop release to edge out the no. 7 Toyota GR010 Hybrid LMH driven to second place by Nyck de Vries, Kamui Kobayashi, and Jose Maria Lopez, just 14 seconds behind the winner.

Rounding out the top three places in the race, which served as round four of the 2024 World Endurance Championship, was the no. 51 Ferrari 499P LMH driven by last year’s winners, James Calado, Antonio Giovinazzi, and Alessandro Pier Guidi, and finishing just 36 seconds behind its sister car.

2024 24 Hours of Le Mans - Photo via Ferrari

2024 24 Hours of Le Mans – Photo via Ferrari

First place in the LMP2 class and 15th overall was the no. 22 Oreca 07 of United Autosports, driven by Bijoy Garg, Oliver Jarvis, and Nolan Siegel. And first place in the LMGT3 class designed for race cars based on production models was the no. 91 Porsche 911 GT3 R of Manthey EMA, driven by Richard Lietz, Yasser Shahin, and Morris Schuring.

This year’s Le Mans started with the no. 6 Porsche 963 LMDh on pole and the no. 3 Cadillac V.Series.R LMDh joining it at the front of the grid. Behind them were the no. 50 and no. 51 Ferraris, with the no. 50 car already leading the race by the end of the first lap and the no. 51 car moving into second shortly after.

Ferrari’s third 499P, the no. 83 car, also spent a long stint in the lead spot early on but needed repairs after contact with the no. 15 BMW M Hybrid V8 LMDh, with Robert Kubica in the Ferrari and Dries Vanthoor in the BMW. The impact resulted in the BMW retiring. BMW’s no. 20 car was also unable to compete with the front-runners, due to several technical issues and a crash with Robin Frijns behind the wheel.

2024 24 Hours of Le Mans - Photo via Ferrari

2024 24 Hours of Le Mans – Photo via Ferrari

Another big crash involved the no. 27 Aston Martin Vantage GT3 of Heart of Racing, the team that next year will field Aston Martin’s new Valkyrie AMR-LMH in the Hypercar class. The car, driven by Daniel Mancinelli, hit a wet patch before sliding into a barrier at high speed and ultimately ending up on its roof.

A similar incident involving the no. 4 Porsche 963 LMDh only an hour prior resulted in Felipe Nasr losing control due to a damp patch in the same curve and ending up in the barriers. The crash also meant the car was retired.

With the 50 points for the victory, Ferrari is now second in the Manufacturers’ standings, nine points behind Porsche. The next race on the calendar is the 6 Hours of Sao Paulo in Brazil in mid-July.

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