The Le Mans 24 hours 2012 ended last weekend where in the famous annual endurance race in France, Audi continues their superb domination by winning the 2012 edition, with three Audi cars finishing in the top three, while the another in fifth. The winning car of Audi R18 e-tron quattro, driven by André Lotterer, Marcel Fässler, and Benoît Tréluyer, marks the first hybrid car to win this endurance race.
Nearest rivals Toyota, who participated their first race without sufficient testing with two TS030 petrol hybrid cars, were poised to give the Audis a run for their money, only to be hampered by retirements. As per any endurance racing, there had been accidents and this year we saw the major ones from Toyota.
The Toyota flies up up and away…..
The Toyota TS030 of Anthony Davidson, collided with the Ferrari 458 Italia of AF Corse Ferrari GTE Am, causing the Toyota to flip over and crash landed into the tyre barriers. This is by far the heaviest crash from this year’s Le Mans, but not as bad as compared to last year’s drama. The Toyota driver was sent into the hospital, with two broken bones. The video of the crash can be seen below.
The Deltawing. Possible rejected batmobile design from Wayne Enterprise
Another highlight of this year’s Le Mans is the inclusion of a unique race car prototype from Nissan. Well it is not the GTR but a rather quirky but fast Deltawing prototype. Driven by Marino Franchitti, Michael Krumm and Satoshi Motoyama, this Batmobile alike prototype was fast and potentially shaped what supposed to be the future of sports car racing. However their race ended in retirement when the Toyota TS030’s Kazuki Nakajima crashed with the DeltaWing, ending the experimental car’s promising race and forcing the Toyota into the pits for repair works, only to go on retirement a few hours later. The video of the crash is as below.
In total, 35 cars from prototypes and GT machines managed to finish the whole 24 hours of carnage and furious racing, with the remaining 21 cars did not complete the race due to mechanical faults or accidents. Yet again, the Germans shown their true supremacy in endurance racing while newcomer Toyota, which mostly consist of ex members of the now defunct Peugeot team, has displayed their new but untested car’s potential threatening the Audis, and poised to make a return in next year’s challenge.
We shall see a more tighter battle between Audi and Toyota soon