The Le Mans 24 Hours is going to feel a bit odd next season. For the first time in nearly 20 years the name Tom Kristensen is not going to grace the entry list. I haven't got my head around it yet, but thankfully he's given us a shade over six months to get used to the idea.
I guess I grew accustomed to the concept that I'd be reporting on a race in which Tom had a realistic chance of winning. Everyone talks about his nine victories in the 24 Hours, but perhaps the more telling statistic is his strike rate over 18 participations - a cool 50 per cent. And he could, and undoubtedly should, have won more.
There have, of course, been longer Le Mans careers and drivers who've had better hit rates (though with far fewer appearances), but no one has been such a force over so many starts at the 24 Hours. Not even the great Jacky Ickx, from whom Kristensen took over the 'Mr Le Mans' monicker.