Ford’s racing team is ready and raring to go for the start of the 2018 Le Mans 24-hour race, which starts at 2pm UK time on Saturday afternoon. The team scored a fantastic third place in qualification, putting them in a great starting position to fight for another Le Mans win.
After winning the 2016 race and finishing runner-up in the 2017 race, the Ford Chip Ganassi Racing team are in a strong position to compete for this year’s championship. They’ll hope that all four Ford GT supercars complete the whole 24-hour-long race, which is known for being the most demanding racing series on the planet.
The Ford GTs race in the Le Mans GTE Pro series, which also includes Porsche 911 RSRs, Ferrari 488s, Chevrolet Corvette C7.Rs, Aston Martin Vantages and BMW M8 GTEs. Le Mans incorporates two specialised racing car categories and the GTE class, based on production cars.
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“It is one of the most spectacular events in the world,” says owner Chip Ganassi. “When you win a race like Le Mans, you know you have accomplished something. It is multiple drivers, crew members and the right manufacturer all coming together. I can’t wait to get back there to compete for another win.”
The #66 Ford GT, driven by Stefan Mucke (Germany), Olivier Pla (France) and Billy Johnson (USA), scored the third-place position in qualifying and will be gunning for the lead. Ford’s #68 team won the race in 2016 and are looking for a double, but Ford will be delighted if any of their teams get onto the podium.
The GT uses the same 3.5-litre EcoBoost engine as the production car, but tuned slightly differently to keep it competitive in a field of 200mph+ GTE cars. As it’s not restricted to the same noise regulations, the exhausts are much louder – although that’s also partly due to the racing car’s anti-lag system. However, it’s the only car in the field without major technical changes from the production version.
We’ll be watching with baited breath to see if Ford can return to the top of the Le Mans rankings. Check back next week to see how they did!