The tension in the closing stages was mainly in the strategy of Ferrari, who were forced to make a pit stop with the number 50 car due to a door that kept slamming open, but was also leaking fuel. This left the team on the verge of making it to the finish, while the #7 Toyota did not have to worry about that. The #6 Porsche, #8 Toyota, #2 Cadillac and #5 Porsche had yet to pit and were behind the #50 Ferrari and #7 Toyota, so they no longer looked like contenders for the win.

AF Corse knocks BMW out of the race

Meanwhile, dark clouds are gathering over the Circuit de la Sarthe, from which drizzle is falling. The race continued until Robert Kubica had a moment of inattention. Just before entering the Mulsanne corner, he bumped the BMW M Hybrid V8 of Belgian driver Dries Vanthoor.

At high speed, the M hypercar hits the crash barriers and loses its nose. The driver is clearly affected, but manages to get out of the car under his own power. The chances of victory for Kubica and his Ferrari AF Corse teammates dwindled dramatically. The team receives a 30-second stop-and-go penalty.

WRT BMW has reacted with dismay to the light penalty handed to Robert Kubica and AF Corse Ferrari for the incident involving Dries Vanthoor’s #15 BMW at the Le Mans 24 Hours.

Porsche not in contention for victory

Porsche was favored by many to win the 92nd running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The German sports car brand had won two of the three previous rounds of the World Endurance Championship (Qatar and Spa) and had been the fastest in all tests and qualifying at the Circuit de la Sarthe.

Penske’s factory Porsche cars ran up front on several occasions during the race, but in the end, fourth place behind the #50 Ferrari, the #7 Toyota Gazoo and the #51 Ferrari was the best result for the #6 Porsche of Kevin Estre, Andre Lotterer and Laurens Vanthoor.

Job van Uitert on the podium

The LMP2 field was also evenly matched. Again, the changing conditions caused problems, but there was Dutch success in both classes. The win went to United Motorsport in the #22. Drivers Oliver Jarvis, Bijoy Garg and Nolan Siegel drove their car to victory, followed by the #34 Inter Europol and #28 IDEC Sport of Job van Uitert, who finished third in the class.

Rossi disappointed after early exit from 24 Hours of Le Mans

Valentino Rossi was one of the crowd favourites at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The Italian MotoGP legend made his debut at the world famous endurance race for the BMW WRT team, and it didn’t go badly. In qualifying the rider, along with teammates Maxime Martin and Ahmad Al Harthy, was tenth, and in the race he did much better. However, the race ended in a minor incident when Al Harthy hit the wall on a wet track and the team had to retire.

The victory in the LMGT3 went to the #91 Manthey EMA Porsche with Yasser Shahin, Richard Lietz and Morris Schuring. They left the #31 Team WRT BMW and the #88 Proton Competition far behind and were able to collect the beautiful trophy on the podium. Gradually, the #91 Porsche of Schuring and teammates Richard Lietz and Yasser Shahin made their way up the field and by the end of the race, it was clear that they were in contention for more than just a podium finish.

Want to see more of Le Mans? Watch the 2023 photos here!