Monday, June 28, 2021

LE MANS: Aston Martins Sweep Supporting Classes

But They Won’t repeat in this year’s GTE Pro category…


Author’s Note

Thoust  “rivetin” No Fenders 2020 24 Heurs du Mans Postscript initially weighed in at a Hefty 5 pages, Hence I broke the Prototypes and Saloons categories into separate stories…


Although this year's 88th running of le 24 Heurs du Mans wasn’t anymore riveting Overall than last year's event, El Correctomundo? Nevertheless, 2020’s Tintops supporting Cast provided plenty of action…


And even though those Scarlet Tintops outnumbered Thar LMGTE Pro Competizione 2-1, with four Ferrari 488 GTE Evo's vs. two Aston Martin Vantage's and two Porsche 911 RSR-19's. It was the #97 Aston winning the Class.


Ironically the winning Aston had another ex-Ford GT Refugee on it's Drivers Roll, a one Harry Tincknell, who's Day Job is chauffeuring the Mazda RT24P Prototype in IMSA's Weathertech SportsCar Championship.


As Tincknell was joined by Maxime Martin and Alex Lynn, a former Team Willy', aka Williams F1 Development Driver, who like many, never quite made it into Formula 1.


And Monsieur (Tristan) Gommendy wasn't the only French Open Wheel Racing Driver having a Bad Day at the Office, since I tend to believe I heard reports of le Hamburgular', nee Sealmeister B', aka Sebastien Bourdais spinning his #82 Risi Competizione Ferrari 488 more than once!


Early on in the TV Broadcast, one of the Announcers emphasized the fact that the Porsche's were now carrying an extra 40 Kilos 'O Ballast from the nebulous BoP (Balance of Performance) regulations, with the Ferrari's now just seven Kilos lighter then the Porsches. While the Aston's not only were lighter, but had been given back more turbo boost!


Which if I've done my Ryth-Muh-tickin' correctly, the 911 RSR's were carrying an additional 88lbs of "Dead Weight," Yikes! Which makes sense that both the Ferrari's and Aston's were Faster overall. Whilst I had Zero Clue if this weight penalty carried over to the "Slower" LMGTE Am Porsche's too?


And even though Ferrari appeared to have a Stranglehold upon the "Slower" GTE Am category, with a Mega Dozen entries comprising more than 50% of the Class, vs. Porsche's eight Panzerwagons.


It was the Aston Martin of TF Sport's No. 90 "Sattelite" Aston Martin winning GTE Am Class Honours with Jonathan Adam, Charlie Eastwood and Salih Yoluç at it's controles.  


As somewhere i read, Err heard Lucy' My Trusty ‘Ol Arse-Steamed Screen Reader Coo to Mwah (before loosing Her to the nebulous world of winDOUGHS 10 and Zoomtext 2020) that TF Sport received "Assistance" from the Aston Martin Factory. As the UK Based Multi-championships winning Sports Car Operation is headed by Tom Ferrier, a former BTCC Competitor, ergo the TF of the racing team's nomenclature.


And lastly, as I wasn't aware of this until far, far afterwards thou Chequered Flag flew. This year's Le Mans event made history with the advent of two 100% Le Femmes Drivers line-ups, one LMP2 Prototypes entry, and one LM GTE Am Tintops' "Saloon."


As the Prototypes entry was the No. 50 Richard Mille Racing Team Alpine A470/Gibson (V-8) with Columbia's Tatiana Calderon, currently contesting Japan's Super Formula series being the only name I recognized. Due to her being an Alfa romeo Racing F1 Test and Development Driver.


Along with Co-Drivers Sophia Florsch, a German Teenager who's campaigning her Rookie season in the FIA Formula 3 championship. And Netherlands's Beitske Visser, who finished runner-up in the 2019 Women's W Series at it's controls. With the trio finishing 13th Overall, and seventh in Class.


While the Gran Torismo entry was the #85 Irox Lynx Ferrari 488 GTE Evo chariot in the "lower" tier GTE Am (Amateur) category driven by Rahel Frey,

Manuela Gostner and Michelle Gatting. They finished 34th Overall, and 55-laps behind the winner.


As Frey's name sounded vaguely familiar to Mwah, before learning that she was part of an All Swiss le Femme's Driving trio Wayback in 2010. Aboard one of Matech Competition's Ford GT1's that I've previously scribbled bout here on No Fenders in a story titled Swiss Misses invade Le Sarthe, ironically on Bastille Day…


Italy's Gostner cut her teeth in regional Ferrari Challenge series and reportedly was a Professional volleyball player. While Gatting is another Dane' cutting her teeth in Sports Car racing - wishing to follow in the Footsteps of Christina Nielsen, a Two-times IMSA Weathertech SportsCar Championship GTD (Daytona) Class Champion.