The End Game Unfolds

June 23, 2013

The End Game Unfolds

June 23, 2013

2013-06-22 at 08-58-29Just four hours remain here at Le Mans and that means each team’s plans and adjustments will start to become evident.

The lead n2 Audi of Duval, McNish and Kristensen appears to be setting up for “Mr. Le Mans”, the eight-time winner, Tom Kristensen, to take the final stints to meet the challenge of the n8 Toyota, likely with Anthony Davidson aboard.

Similar scenarios play out between the n7 Toyota and the pursuing n3 Audi where a final pairing may be Toyota’s Alex Wurz against Audi’s Marc Gene in the fight for the final podium spot.

The race long GT battle between Porsche and Aston Martin sees each with powerful options, perhaps with Porsche’s Timo Bernhard matched against Aston Martin’s Darren Turner.

In GTE-AM, Dempsey DelPiero fights to hold on to a podium position. Will Porsche ace Patrick Long be tasked with bringing the car home or does Patrick Dempsey get the chance to finish his journey to Le Mans 2013?

Many teams develop their 24 Hour race plans both front-to-back and back-to-front. What will be the driver rotation? Who will start? How many stints for the driver? How many stints on the tires? Who will finish?

No plan of attack anticipates everything that can happen at Le Mans. Some drivers are especially good, or bad, at night, in the wet, or at bringing home a worn or damaged car.

There were 41 rookie drivers in the starting field. How and when do the rookie drive?

Through the first 20 hours, there have been several bouts of rain and ten Safety Car periods, plus the inevitable unscheduled pit stops. Time spent under the safety car still counts as driver time and exceeding the maximum time for a driver means a DSQ.

The drivers in the car at this point are unlikely be the ones to finish the race.

Just four hours remain and the final cards begin to appear. Welcome to the final 4 Hours of Le Mans.

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