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The Race

A report on the race from Lowdrag aka Trackside Tony

The race?

Was there one? 

The LMP1 was a walkover, but the LMP 2 was interesting. I was most inspired by the IDEC car, which crashed in practice, was rebuilt, suffered a lap penalty at the start, and still finished well. I was inspired by the three girls in the Richard Mille LMP2 Oreca who finished in the top 10 in their class and 13th overall. It is time a woman was given an LMP1 seat, and raced in F1 too.The wins of Aston Martin in both pro and amateur were impressive too. But my overall feeling? One of depression, deflation, being let-down, one of seeing the end of racing as we know it, and - yes, wondering at my age if I shall be here to see it all. I have no interest in electric cars, seeing them as a stop-gap cul de sac, and hydrogen I see as the future, but neither make a noise that stirs my soul - in fact no bloody noise at all. On the aerodrome next to the circuit we have a hydrogen station, and by 2024 all buses here at Le Mans will be hydrogen powered. My time has passed, the security has made life untenable as a press photographer, and I have put my cameras away and I don't think they'll be back out again. I was refused press passes after 25 years of writing four page articles every year - because I was not important enough. One can no longer take photos at Mulsanne, not at the entry to Indianapolis, because it is too dangerous. Indeed, the holes in the fencing have been filled in to stop a camera being used and red paint is on the armco to warn us we are in a zone rouge. Gone are the days when I took photos like this, standing on the wall outside the fencing at the golf club. 70/200 at three metres or so. I shall be around as long as God wills, but the lack of interest is showing 


Our new trackside reporter 'Lowdrag' has been out to the Mulsanne Corner to see the work that has been done to the corner. He also had a look in our favourite bar. 

Lowdrag writes...
Well, once again it seems that Jeannine is still running the show, and frankly I think that she'll only leave in a box. She's been there since she was 21 and that's about 45 years now. She is part of the history of Le Mans for many of us.

It will be a brave man who tries to use the rumble strip twice, or even once. 
I really cannot understand what they have tried to achieve here. In the past it was a 60 mph 2nd gear corner, and the idea was to make it less a 90 degree bend. The new gravel trap is deeper, but I can't say that it looks any better to me. 

The first photo shows the approach, with the dailt road on the left, a stupid gravel trap, and the racing line on the right. 

In the second I am standing looking back up the Mulsanne, and you can see the tyre wall which is at the end of that silly gravel trap. I'm off  the racing line on the interior of the racing line. 

Next I am standing on the wall on the inside of the bend. You can see the gravel trap and the change to spectator viewing.

Many thanks to Tony "Lowdrag" for the photos of Mulsanne Corner and the news from the track.

Time to 24hr Du Mans 2022:


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