Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked
Toyota scored its fourth Le Mans 24 Hours victory and a 1-2, with the #7 car of Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez beating the #8. But although it looked straightforward from the outside, Toyota faced serious problem that had to be solved with some quick-thinking and ingenuity
On the face of it, Toyota had an easy run to victory in the 89th running of the Le Mans 24 Hours with its new Le Mans Hypercar. The best of its GR010 HYBRIDS finished four laps up on its nearest rival in the form of Alpine's old LMP1 car. The reality was that over the latter hours of the race the Japanese manufacturer was fighting an issue that threatened not just its chances of victory, but to relegate its two cars perhaps as far as the lower reaches of the top 20.
That Toyota was able to celebrate a fourth Le Mans victory in a row was the result of some outside-the-box thinking. And that Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez were finally able to get a victory on the board in the big race after years of heartbreak was at least partially down to the fact that their GR010 was hit later than the sister car over the course of the double-points round of the World Endurance Championship last weekend.
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