Toyota and Michelin score Le Mans hat trick!
The partnership between Michelin and Toyota Gazoo Racing delivered a third consecutive triumph at Le Mans this weekend with the N°8 Toyota TS050 Hybrid crewe...
Scoring a 23rd consecutive victory at September’s Le Mans 24 Hours wasn’t the only new benchmark Michelin established in La Sarthe this year…
The most striking achievement of the 2020 Le Mans was probably the fact that a single set of Michelin Pilot Sport tyres completed no less than 750 kilometres at an average speed nudging 240kph when Californian Gustavo Menezes completed 55 laps in the N°1 Rebellion R13 LMP1 prototype on Sunday morning.
Japan’s Kamui Kobayashi clinched pole-position in Friday’s Hyperpole shootout with a new lap record (3m15.267s / 251.2kph) for Version 15 of the Circuit des 24 Heures (13.626km) in his Toyota TS050 Hybrid.
The same session saw Michelin post a new fastest lap time in LMP2 (3m24.528s / 239.8kph), thanks to ex-F1 driver Paul di Resta in the N°22 Oreca-Gibson.
A new race lap record was clocked on Michelin Pilot Sport tyres in LMGTE Am when Ross Gunn produced a time of 3m52.449s (211kph) – an improvement of practically three seconds! – in the N°98 Aston Martin Vantage.
Bruno Senna (Rebellion R13/Michelin) came close to bettering the existing benchmark for the fastest race lap average speed behind the wheel of a non-hybrid LMP1 prototype, falling just 0.2kph short of the 246.4kph recorded by a Michelin-equipped Audi some years back.
This year’s race saw the LMP2 distance record beaten, too, thanks to the 5,041.62km/370 laps completed by the N°22 United Autosports Oreca-Gibson of Paul di Resta/Filipe Albuquerque/Phil Hanson which consumed just 13 sets of Michelin Pilot Sport tyres in the process.
Two Michelin-equipped cars– the N°97 Aston Martin Vantage and N°51 Ferrari 488 GTE Evo – went further in the race than any LMGTE Pro runner before them (4,714.59km).
The top-five LMGTE Am finishers (representing three different makes, and all on Michelin rubber) beat the class’s race-distance record. The figure to beat now stands at 4,619km (339 laps).