Why do I love this race?
Man and machine struggle to win, and there are four races in one! Yes, there are four race categories filled with very different cars capable of reaching diverse top speeds and using varied aerodynamics, all racing together for 24hrs on the same 8.5 milesc of track!
Taking this year's race,Toyota did a One Two win. It can be argued that this year they didn't have a true opposition, so the race was theirs to win... Or lose.
In the end they did win, and I was happy with that. Why? Because of Toyota's driver Kazuki Nakajima. Back in 2016, he was also driving for Toyota and they dominated the entire 24hr Le Mans race despite good Audi and Porsche opposition. For 23 hours and 50 minutes they were clearly ahead of the pack. Until the very last lap, when the car broke down. Everyone watching was surprised and saddened by the sudden turn of events.
Despite all the efforts of Nakajima to restart the car or use the (very limited in power and speed) electric engine to reach the finish line, he was unable to reach it in time. Porsche who was so far behind that they were not even trying to win, rushed ahead and got the win. A very unfair win but a win nonetheless.
This year Toyota didn't have Audi or Porsche opposition; as these brands decided to leave the Endurance competition. Toyota did everything in their power to win by a great distance to everyone else. The icing on the cake was that the driver chosen to cross the finish line in the winning car was the same that couldn't do it in 2016. Nakajima finally got the prize and the applause he so rightly deserved two years ago!
The lesson of all of this? Never give up!