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GrahamHill
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The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Tue Jan 27, 2009 6:25 pm

Hello,

Formula 1 has its thread, so I thought that endurance should have its own as well  

In the 50s, 60s and 70s, endurance was as famous as Formula one, if not more famous, and Le Mans was - and still is - considered as the greatest endurance race in the world and among the top three best races in the world (alongside Indy 500 and the F1 GP of Monaco).

All major or famous car manufacturers raced in Le Mans: Ferrari, Porsche, Jaguar, Aston Martin, Bentley, Alfa Romeo, Audi, Mercedes-Benz, BMW, Cadillac, Ford, Chevrolet, Peugeot, Renault, Toyota, Nissan, Mazda, etc. Winning Le Mans is a must-have on the resumé.

In the mid-70s, Ferrari decided to give up endurance in order to fully focus in Formula 1, as Enzo thought (and he was right) that F1 would become the world major motorsports competition.

The 80s were the decade of the fastest cars of the history of Le Mans. 400 km/h of top speed in the Mulsanne straight. The official record belongs to a WM-Peugeot: 405 km/h in 1988. Considering this, the FIA imposed two chicanes on the Le Mans track in 1990. The legendary Mulsanne straight has been sacrificed for safety reasons.

The early 90s saw the end of the world championship. Only Le Mans survived. In 1999, Don Panoz created the ALMS in collaboration with the ACO. In 2004, the Europan version of the ALMS, the ELMS, later called the LMS, were created.

Key moments:

1922: First race of the 24 Hours of Le Mans;
1952: First race of the 12 hours of Sebring;
1955: Deadliest crash in motorsports history. The Mercedes of Pierre Eugène Alfred Bouillin a.k.a Pierre Levegh crashes into the Austin-Healey of Lance Macklin. The car flips and land on the spectators' stands, killing more than 80;
1969: Jacky Ickx walks to his car in order to protest against the dangerous Le Mans-style start.
1971: Introduction of the rolling start, still in operation today;
1971: The Porsche of Jacky Oliver sets the fastest lap time of the history, with 3'18''4;
1988: Fastest top speed established by a WM-Peugeot: 405 km/h in the Mulsanne straight.
1990: 2 chicanes are built on the 5 km-long Mulsanne straight;
1991: Mazda became the first and only Japanese manufacturer to win Le Mans. They also became the first to win with a rotary engine;
1992: End of the Sports Car World Championship; The 24 Hours of Le Mans survive.
1997: Death of Sébastien Enjolras during the preliminary tests. He is the last driver to have lost his life on the Le Mans track;
1999: Creation of the ALMS;
2004: Creation of the LMS;
2006: First success of a diesel engine at Le Mans with the Audi R10.

Now that we have more background, let's talk about the 2009 Le Mans race, ALMS and LMS championships!

[Edited 2009-01-27 10:32:54]
"A learned fool is more foolish than an ignorant one" - Moliere
 
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GrahamHill
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS And Le Mans Race

Tue Jan 27, 2009 6:30 pm

I start with a good news: Aston Martin is back with a P1 car!

http://www.endurance-info.com/2009_Le_Mans/AstonMartinLMP1.jpg

For the 50th birthday of its overall win at Le Mans with the DBR1, in 1959, Aston Martin will leave the GT category to race in P1 at Le Mans and in the LMS championship!
"A learned fool is more foolish than an ignorant one" - Moliere
 
bill142
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Thu Jan 29, 2009 11:50 am

That Aston, like most Astons, is a fine looking machine.
 
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Scooter01
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Fri Jan 30, 2009 10:15 pm

Might be worth mentioning that former (2003) WRC-Champion, Petter Solberg, just finished testing with the Oreca team at Le Mans, driving a prototype powered by a Judd GV5 S2 engine.
He might be a driver in this year's 24hr. race.


Here's a good link, not only for the technically minded...
http://www.mulsannescorner.com/index.html

Enjoy!

Scooter01
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GrahamHill
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Sat Jan 31, 2009 9:56 am

Quoting Bill142 (Reply 2):
That Aston, like most Astons, is a fine looking machine.

Indeed. And with the legendary Gulf colours, it is even more beautiful!

Quoting Scooter01 (Reply 3):
Petter Solberg, just finished testing with the Oreca team at Le Mans, driving a prototype powered by a Judd GV5 S2 engine.

Are you sure it is powered by the Judd? In the French website Endurance Info, they say it is powered by the new AIM engine.

Anyway, Oreca gave also the wheel to Yvan Muller. So that's two World champions (Solberg in WRC, Muller in WTCC) who drove the Oreca. Not bad for De Chaunac's team!

Quoting Scooter01 (Reply 3):
Here's a good link, not only for the technically minded...

A must-see for all endurance fans  

[Edited 2009-01-31 01:57:08]

[Edited 2009-01-31 01:57:35]
"A learned fool is more foolish than an ignorant one" - Moliere
 
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Scooter01
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Sun Feb 01, 2009 10:13 am



Quoting GrahamHill (Reply 4):
Are you sure it is powered by the Judd?

-I got it from somewhere, probably reading it in some Norwegian paper, and we all know that the Norwegian press is well known for it's expertise on motorsports.  duck 
-Sorry about that.

After reading more carefully on the web, it seems obvious that this year's car uses the AIM.

-Anyway, it was Googling "Judd GV5 S2 V10" that led me to "Mulsanne's Corner"


Scooter01
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scrubbsywg
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Sun Feb 01, 2009 10:21 am



Quoting GrahamHill (Reply 4):
Indeed. And with the legendary Gulf colours, it is even more beautiful!

agreed, the gulf livery is awesome.

I am not a huge fan of le mans, but i do enjoy watching the 24h race from France. I mostly watch f1, and it is a very different type of racing.
 
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GrahamHill
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Sun Feb 01, 2009 12:20 pm



Quoting ScrubbsYWG (Reply 6):
I am not a huge fan of le mans, but i do enjoy watching the 24h race from France. I mostly watch f1, and it is a very different type of racing.

It's not the same philosophy. For many years, endurance was a "manufactuer" competition while F1 was a "driver" competition. In other words, you would support a car manufacturer in endurance, while you would support the driver in F1 (except for the Italian tifosi who would support Ferrari regardless who is the driver - they were the exception until many manufactuers decided to join F1 with engine+chassis).

Technology is not the same either. Cars in endurance must run for 4,000 or 5,000 km in a row while F1 can just run for 600 km. So performances of endurance cars are not as good as F1s, althought cars like the Audi R10 or the Peugeot 908 are incredible machines.

I like F1, but I still prefer to watch the ALMS because there are more overtakes and fighting.
"A learned fool is more foolish than an ignorant one" - Moliere
 
scrubbsywg
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:03 pm



Quoting GrahamHill (Reply 7):
It's not the same philosophy. For many years, endurance was a "manufactuer" competition while F1 was a "driver" competition. In other words, you would support a car manufacturer in endurance, while you would support the driver in F1 (except for the Italian tifosi who would support Ferrari regardless who is the driver - they were the exception until many manufactuers decided to join F1 with engine+chassis).

Technology is not the same either. Cars in endurance must run for 4,000 or 5,000 km in a row while F1 can just run for 600 km. So performances of endurance cars are not as good as F1s, althought cars like the Audi R10 or the Peugeot 908 are incredible machines.

I like F1, but I still prefer to watch the ALMS because there are more overtakes and fighting.

I definitely understand that. As an engineer, both series have their attractions for me. F1 for the shear awesomeness of speed, design, engineering, etc. and Le mans for the reliability in the designs even in the face of speed.

IS JV gonna race for peugeot this year? Would be awesome to see the canadian finally get the triple crown of racing.
 
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GrahamHill
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Sun Feb 01, 2009 1:50 pm



Quoting ScrubbsYWG (Reply 8):
IS JV gonna race for peugeot this year?

Unfortunately, no. It's almost not a secret anymore that Peugeot will not take him on board for 2009. Same for Ricardo Zonta.

The question now is: who is going to take their seats?

Quoting ScrubbsYWG (Reply 8):
Would be awesome to see the canadian finally get the triple crown of racing.

Yes, although the triple crown is originally the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the Indy 500 and the GP of Monaco. The F1 world championship has nothing to do in the triple crown. It's just an invention from the journalist who probably wanted to do some sentionalism over Villeneuve's attempt. Even Villeneuve reminded them that to get the triple crown, he should have won the Monaco GP.

The only one who ever achieved this is... Graham Hill  Smile
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Kiwirob
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Sun Feb 01, 2009 6:54 pm



Quoting GrahamHill (Reply 9):
The only one who ever achieved this is... Graham Hill

I wonder how many others have gotten close. I can only think of Bruce Mclaren, he won Monaco and Le Mans, plus he had a number of goes at Indy.
 
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GrahamHill
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Sun Feb 01, 2009 8:45 pm



Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 10):
I wonder how many others have gotten close. I can only think of Bruce Mclaren, he won Monaco and Le Mans, plus he had a number of goes at Indy.

He never won Indy, but his cars did win 3 times.

I know that A.J. Foyt won Le Mans and Indy the same year (1967) but he never raced in Monaco.
"A learned fool is more foolish than an ignorant one" - Moliere
 
trident3
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Ra

Mon Feb 02, 2009 12:05 pm



Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 10):
I wonder how many others have gotten close. I can only think of Bruce Mclaren, he won Monaco and Le Mans, plus he had a number of goes at Indy.

Jackie Stewart won at Monaco and Indianapolis but never raced at Le Mans
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Kiwirob
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Mon Feb 02, 2009 1:14 pm



Quoting Trident3 (Reply 12):

Jackie Stewart won at Monaco and Indianapolis but never raced at Le Mans

Not quit, Stewart almost won on his first attempt but never managed to win it, he competed at Le Mans but also never won. Stewart was a very versatile driver, he drove almost anything, including Can Am.
 
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GrahamHill
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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Mon Feb 02, 2009 3:04 pm



Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 13):
he competed at Le Mans but also never won.

Yep. That was in 1965 with Graham Hill  Smile

They finished 10th on the Rover-BRM #31:

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RE: The 2009 ALMS/LMS Championships And Le Mans Race

Wed Feb 04, 2009 11:21 am

I was also the Sebring Winter tests. We could discover the new Acura LMP1 :

http://www.endurance-info.com/2009_ALMS/AcuraLMP1_09.jpg

Such a shame that Porsche and Audi withrdrew. It could have been another great year in ALMS.

Here are the final lap times:

1 Acura ARX-02a #66/De Ferran Motorsports 1:44.814
2 Acura ARX-02a #9/Patron-Highcroft Racing 1:46.157
3 Acura ARX-01b #15/Fernandez Racing 1:46.540
4 Lola B08/86 #16/Dyson Racing 1:49.462
5 Porsche 997-RSR #45/Flying Lizard 2:01.866
6 Porsche 997-RSR #87/Farnbacher-Loles 2:02.082
7 Panoz Esperante #21/Team PTG 2:02.470
8 Porsche 997-RSR #46/Flying Lizard 2:02.590
9 Porsche 997-RSR #44/Flying Lizard 2:02.720
10 Porsche 997-RSR #5/VICI Racing 2:02.892
11 Riley-Corvette #28/LG Motorsports 2:03.550
12 BMW M3 E92 #92/Rahal-Letterman Racing 2:03.654
13 Ford GT-R #40/Robertson Racing 2:04.085
14 Dodge Viper #11/Primetime RaceGroup 2:04.793

No surprise, Acura are the fastest.

The Rahal Letterman BMW M3 is quite behind. Even if it's a totally new car, they have to improve quickly as the season will start soon!
"A learned fool is more foolish than an ignorant one" - Moliere

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