As the Le Mans 24 Hours race took place on Circuit de la Sarthe for the 90th time, we saw a tale of 2 Toyota's unfold as Sebastien Buemi, Brendon Hartley, and Ryo Hirakawa led a 1-2 finish for the Japanese manufacturer in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the teams 5th consecutive overall win.
In the No. 8 Toyota GR010 Hybrid, Hartley brought the car to the 4 pm Sunday checkered flag with two minutes to spare for Jose Maria Lopez, who shared the No. 7 Toyota with fellow defending winner Kamui Kobayashi and Mike Conway.
Glickenhaus Racing’s No. 709 Glickenhaus 007 Pipo, driven by Ryan Briscoe, Franck Mailleux and Richard Westbrook, finished third, four laps behind the winning Toyota.
It was the least delayed of the non-hybrid Glickenhaus LMH machines, with the sister No. 708 finishing five laps further back in fourth overall.
Alpine's grandfathered LMP1 couldn't mount a challenge in the final race for the car. Nicholas Lapierre, Andre Negrao, and Matthieu Vaxiviere were classified 18 laps behind the winning Toyota in 23rd.
Taking the lead in the opening exchanges, JOTA won the 24 Hours of Le Mans in the LMP2 class for its first victory since 2017.
Taking the class win by nearly a minute and a half over the No. 9 Prema Oreca of Robert Kubica, Louis Deletraz and Lorenzo Colombo as the Italian team made its Le Mans debut, the No. 38 Oreca 07 Gibson of Roberto Gonzalez, Antonio Felix da Costa and Will Stevens won by more than a minute and a half.
In the opening hour, JOTA's 'Mighty 38' took the lead from Kubica just after he passed Da Costa during the first round of pitstops.
Kubica took the lead after a chaotic start in which United Autosports' Will Owen ended up in the gravel after tangles with Team WRT's Rene Rast.
A Porsche GT Team 911 RSR-19 of Gianmaria Bruni, Richard Lietz and Fred Makowiecki took victory in the final GTE-Pro race at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, ending a near three-year winless streak in FIA World Endurance Championship competition.
Due to misfortunes by both AF Corse and Corvette Racing, the German manufacturer won the top class for the first time since 2018 and the maiden Le Mans event for the RSR-19 model, in its second-to-last outing on Circuit of the Sarte.
During the race, Makowiecki was fighting with the No. 51 AF Corse Ferrari 488 GTE of Alessandro Pier Guidi, who was forced to make an unscheduled stop for a punctured tire on his right rear.
It was the No. 91 Porsche's first WEC class victory since the season opener at Silverstone.
In GTE-Am, TF Sport won with the #33 Aston Martin driven by Ben Keating, Henrique Chaves, and Marco Sorensen.
The #79 Porsche of long-time leader WeatherTech Racing completed the top three, followed by Northwest AMR of Aston Martin.
Nick Cassidy finished sixth in class in AF Corse's #54 Ferrari, while the Matt Campbell-driven Porsche finished 16th in GTE-Am.
There were two major incidents during Sunday's run to the flag that claimed GTE-Am competitors.
The #56 Porsche of Brendan Iribe snapped sideways under braking for the first Mulsanne chicane and hit the barrier with seven hours left to go.
With three hours left on the clock, the #60 Iron Lynx Ferrari of Claudio Schiavoni was punted into the fence by a prototype as it exited the Porsche Curves.
In all, there were nine retirements from the 62 starters.
The full classification can be found below.
Images - Rick Kiewiet
Text - Adam Prescott