Mechanical failures make for a fascinating Le Mans

2017 24 Hours of Le Mans: Competing Brands in Videos

2017 24 Hours of Le Mans: Competing Brands in Videos

The Porsche 919 Hybrid No. 1 of the Porsche Team driven by Neel Jani of Switzerland, Andre Lotterer of Germany and Nick Tandy of Britain races in a curve during the 85th 24-hour Le Mans endurance race in Le Mans, western France, Sunday, June 18, 2017.

That lead wouldn't last very long, as the leading Porsche No. 1 auto lost oil pressure with only four hours to go and was forced to retire.

That left Jackie Chan DC Racing's LMP2 out in-front, setting a record as they became the first lower category auto in history to lead Le Mans. An LMP2 classed vehicle held the lead of the race for about three hours. "We were so competitive but we had a clutch problem and we couldn't come back".

Just minutes after Kobayashi's auto retired, the No.9 driven by Nicolas Lapierre was hit by the No.25 Manor LMP2 vehicle.

With about an hour and a half remaining in the race, it appeared Chan's Oreca might pull off one of the greatest upsets in recent motorsports history.

The biggest source of attrition at Le Mans is collisions with other cars. The 2017 Le Mans has been the most successful for LMP2 cars with the #38 claiming overall second and the #13 Vaillante Rebellion claiming overall third. Both of the ORECA-Gibsons run by the Anglo-Swiss team encountered problems, though the #13 vehicle shared by Nelson Piquet Jr, David Heinemeier Hansson and Mathias Beche took the final spot on the podium.

Bernhard replaced Hartley to set up a thrilling finish around the 13.629-kilometer (8.45-mile) track. Quite a reversal of fortune for Porsche´s No.2 auto after a one-hour pit stop on Saturday.

Ultimately, after 24 long hours of racing, it was the No.2 Porsche 919 Hybrid that took the chequered flag first, with Timo Bernhard behind the wheel. On lap 330 for the No. 2 auto, an LMP2 is still in the lead.

The GTE Am class was won by the British JMW Motorsport squad.

The team missed out a year ago when their leading auto broke down on the final lap only minutes from the chequered flag. I was able to get a good start but I just couldn't stay attached and push Kyle (Larsen) out there. Last year Nakajima´s Toyota had the race at his mercy only for his vehicle to give up the ghost on the final lap, handing victory on a plate to Porsche. We saw the #2 Porsche stay in the garage for two hours so we could still be ahead of them.

"I tried to come back to the pits but it wasn't possible".

In the GTE Pro class for production-based cars with professional drivers, Aston Martin reigned supreme, albeit thanks to a little luck.

"I can not move, I can not move", complained the former Formula One driver, who had led Britain's Nick Tandy in the number one Porsche by more than a lap as the race hit the midnight mark. But Earl Bamber, Brendon Hartley and especially Timo Bernhard deserved to take the race win. It was ultimately Aston Martin and Corvette that played their strategies best, with Corvette Racing's Jordan Taylor leading the #97 Aston Martin with three laps to go.

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