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Ferrari’s Legacy at Le Mans: An Unparalleled Chronicle of Triumph

Maranello, 5 June 2024 – The storied relationship between Ferrari and Le Mans, the world’s oldest endurance race, is a tapestry woven with significant dates and numbers. With ten overall victories, the most recent being just twelve months ago, Ferrari has cemented its legacy in motorsport history. The 499P’s debut win last year added to Ferrari’s tally of 29 class victories since its debut in 1949, marking another chapter in its illustrious Le Mans saga. This history will see its continuation in the 92nd edition of the race on 15-16 June at the 13.626-kilometre French circuit in the fourth round of the FIA WEC 2024.

Centenary Triumph

The centenary edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans remains etched in the memory of Ferrari fans. The number 51 Le Mans Hypercar, driven by Alessandro Pier Guidi, crossed the finish line first, securing Ferrari’s tenth overall victory. Alongside teammates James Calado and Antonio Giovinazzi, Pier Guidi’s win in the centenary race was historic, marking Ferrari’s return to the top endurance class after half a century and 58 years since their last win.

A Race to Remember

This victory followed an impressive 342 laps of a grueling race witnessed by a record 325,000 spectators. The image of the 499P returning to the pit lane, surrounded by the jubilant Ferrari – AF Corse team, has become iconic. Equally memorable was the race’s start, with two 499Ps at the front of the grid: the number 50, which took the Hyperpole with Antonio Fuoco, Miguel Molina, and Nicklas Nielsen, finishing fifth overall.

In addition to the victory and Hyperpole, the number 50 car clocked the best race time, with Fuoco recording a lap of 3:27.218 on the 307th lap, averaging 236.7 km/h.

Ferrari’s Endurance Racing Heritage

Ferrari’s legacy in endurance racing began in the late 1940s. In its debut at the La Sarthe circuit in 1949, the 166 MM Barchetta Touring clinched a historic first place with Luigi Chinetti and Lord Selsdon behind the wheel. The number 22 car, powered by the iconic 1995 CMC V12 engine, delivered an impressive 140 hp.

Dominance in the 1960s

Ferrari’s legend at Le Mans grew with two wins in the 1950s and an astounding six consecutive victories between 1960 and 1965. This era showcased iconic models like the Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa and celebrated drivers such as Olivier Gendebien, who holds the record for most victories with Ferrari at Le Mans, achieving four wins between 1958 and 1962 with three different Ferrari models.

The winning streak ended in 1965 with the Ferrari 250 LM’s triumph, driven by Jochen Rindt and Masten Gregory. This victory saw Ferrari crews dominate the podium. It wasn’t until 2023 that Ferrari returned to the top endurance class to celebrate another overall win.

21st Century Success

Ferrari’s recent history at Le Mans is equally illustrious. Since the inception of the FIA WEC in 2012, Ferrari has secured eight class victories. Notably, the Ferrari 488 GTE driven by Pier Guidi and Calado triumphed in the LMGTE Pro class in 2019 and 2021, with the latter victory shared with Daniel Serra. In 2021, Ferrari also claimed first place in the LMGTE Am with the 488 GTE, driven by Nicklas Nielsen, Alessio Rovera, and François Perrodo.

Ferrari’s Overall Victories at Le Mans:

  • 1949 – Ferrari 166 MM – L. Chinetti, Lord Selsdon
  • 1954 – Ferrari 375 Plus – J. F. Gonzalez, M. Trintignant
  • 1958 – Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa – P. Hill, O. Gendebien
  • 1960 – Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa – O. Gendebien, P. Frère
  • 1961 – Ferrari 250 Testa Rossa – O. Gendebien, P. Hill
  • 1962 – Ferrari 330 TR – O. Gendebien, P. Hill
  • 1963 – Ferrari 250 P – L. Bandini, L. Scarfiotti
  • 1964 – Ferrari 275 P – J. Guichet, N. Vaccarella
  • 1965 – Ferrari 250 LM – J. Rindt, M. Gregory
  • 2023 – Ferrari 499P – A. Pier Guidi, J. Calado, A. Giovinazzi

As Ferrari prepares for the 92nd edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the legacy of its past successes serves as both inspiration and a benchmark for future triumphs.

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