#1 Porsche was driving 'conservatively' before Le Mans retirement

The drivers from the #1 Porsche that retired from the lead of the Le Mans 24 Hours on Sunday morning said they had been trying to drive really conservatively

#1 Porsche was driving 'conservatively' before Le Mans retirement

The car of Andre Lotterer, Nick Tandy and Neel Jani found itself in a commanding position when every other LMP1 car, including its sister #2 machine that went on to win the race, hit major trouble over the first half of the race.

The #1 car was managing a huge lead over the best of the LMP2 runners on Sunday when it lost oil pressure with Lotterer at the wheel.

Despite his attempts to complete a slow lap on electrical power to get back to the pits for repairs, he eventually had to park up on the Mulsanne straight.

"We were driving really conservatively but suddenly the oil pressure dropped," said Lotterer.

"To retire this way is hard, but this is Le Mans.

"It's a pity, very sad. You almost wanted to not believe it.

"I tried to bring the car back with only the battery.

"Maybe we could have done something at the pits, but it's tough when the engine dies on you."

Jani added: "We tried to nurse the car home but it was not to be.

"Mentally the stints were quite hard anyway because when you are not pushing to the limits, too many things and thoughts come up.

"Last year we had the luck on our side [when Toyota retired from the lead in the closing minutes] but this year was not the case."

Earl Bamber, one of the winning drivers in the #2 car, said it was "hard to believe what happened" to the #1 machine.

His fellow 2015 winner Tandy said it was tough to run a clean race with so much action going on around them.

"There's been so many incidents in this race, it's unbelievable," said Tandy.

"There was a lot of debris on the track, it was tough to try to look after the car and avoid punctures, for example.

"I listened out for any strange noises in the car like never before and all seemed OK."

The #2 919 Hybrid completed its recovery from a seemingly lost cause by passing the LMP2 #38 Jackie Chan DC Racing ORECA for the lead in the 23rd hour to salvage the race for Porsche.

shares
comments
Porsche defeats LMP2 cars to win 2017 Le Mans 24 Hours
Previous article

Porsche defeats LMP2 cars to win 2017 Le Mans 24 Hours

Next article

Top two teams thought Le Mans lead battle would go to final lap

Top two teams thought Le Mans lead battle would go to final lap
Load comments
Why Le Mans didn't decide Toyota's WEC title outcome in 2021 Plus

Why Le Mans didn't decide Toyota's WEC title outcome in 2021

Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez scored a second successive World Endurance Championship title in the #7 Toyota, as its new Le Mans Hypercar went unbeaten. Autosport recaps how each of the four classes in the 2021 season were won and picks out the best LMH and GTE drivers

WEC
Nov 28, 2021
The unanswered questions that define WEC 2021's controversial ending Plus

The unanswered questions that define WEC 2021's controversial ending

OPINION: The deeply unsatisfying ending to a brilliant World Endurance Championship GTE Pro battle in Bahrain had Ferrari provisionally heading back from the desert as the victor. But Porsche plans to appeal the outcome, which rests on a number of confusing elements that have yet to be satisfactorily explained

WEC
Nov 9, 2021
How the WEC's heavyweight duel reached its controversial flashpoint Plus

How the WEC's heavyweight duel reached its controversial flashpoint

The Ferrari versus Porsche fight for the World Endurance Championship's GTE Pro title had been a finely-poised affair, right up until Alessandro Pier Guidi's punt on Michael Christensen in the closing stages of the Bahrain 8 Hours handed Ferrari a provisional title, pending Porsche's appeal. Here's how the controversy played out

WEC
Nov 8, 2021
The remarkable fixes Toyota used to avert another Le Mans disaster Plus

The remarkable fixes Toyota used to avert another Le Mans disaster

The 1-2 finish achieved by Toyota at this year's Le Mans 24 Hours was a result that will have surprised few, given its status as pre-event favourite. But the result was anything but straightforward, as worsening fuel pressure concerns required the team's drivers and engineers to pursue "creative fixes" on the fly. Here is the full story of how it reached the end without a lengthy pit visit

Le Mans
Nov 3, 2021
How the #7 Toyota squad moved closer to clinching WEC's 2021 title Plus

How the #7 Toyota squad moved closer to clinching WEC's 2021 title

In the penultimate round of the 2021 World Endurance Championship, a better run of tyre wear for Mike Conway, Jose Maria Lopez and Kamui Kobayashi brought the Toyota trio its third win from five events, as the #7 squad put one hand on the title. Here's how the first of the WEC's two Bahrain enduros played out

WEC
Nov 1, 2021
The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert Plus

The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert

It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood Plus

Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood

Team WRT has been at the forefront of GT racing for years and made a successful move to prototypes for 2021, capped by an LMP2 win on its Le Mans debut. It could've been even better had the race been one lap shorter, when its cars ran 1-2, but the stranger-than-fiction reality has spurred the team to reach greater heights

Le Mans
Oct 16, 2021
The standout memories of Le Mans 2021 Plus

The standout memories of Le Mans 2021

OPINION: With four of the five Hypercar entries unproven in a 24-hour race, it would not have been unexpected for at least one of them to suffer serious reliability trouble. That they all managed to make it through the race relatively unscathed, says GARY WATKINS, was something of a surprise.

Le Mans
Aug 24, 2021