The # 63 team guts it out for 5th place in GTE PRO (re-classified 4th) while # 64 team falters at the 2018 24 hours of Le Mans
The Corvette Racing team made its 19th consecutive start at the most important sports car race in the world. Starting just 9th (# 63) and 15th (# 64) seemingly put a ninth win out of reach but this cohesive team can never be counted out.
Mounting pressure on the ACO to equalize competition resulted in further BOP weight adjustments after final practice to the record 17 car GTE PRO field with Porsche (4 entries), Ford (4 entries), Ferrari (3), BMW (2) and Aston Martin (2).
The # 63 team executed perfectly. Jan Magnussen, Antonio Garcia and Mike Rockenfeller avoided trouble over 24 hours of racing and steadily moved up to 5th when the checker flag flew.
The car was scored 4th after the # 67 Ford GT Ganassi Europe was penalized for a pit road violation caught on post- race video.
In a rare occurrence the right front suspension broke setting back the # 64 during a lengthy stop for repairs.
Oliver Gavin, Tommy Milner and Marcel Fassler soldiered on until engine overheating sidelined them around the 20-hour mark. Who said “lightning never strikes twice”?
According to Doug Fehan, the C7.R has proved itself and can still compete until the mid-engine C8.R is fully developed and ready to win. The C8.R may be further held to comply with ACO regs for a new Supercar class to take effect in 2021.
Le Mans Pundits mused it was Porsche’s turn to win GTE PRO which was exactly the outcome as the Manthey Team # 92 & # 91 Porsche RSR took first and second thanks to unintended consequences of safety car deployment. The cars were decked out in retro Pink Pig and Rothmans tobacco liveries.
The legacy of the original Porsche 917/20 Pink Pig that appeared in 1970 lives on!