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ORECA wins on all fronts at 24 Hours of Le Mans

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The 86th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans came to an end on Saturday 17th June at 3pm. ORECA Group met success across all projects at this year’s legendary twice-around-the-clock race in La Sarthe; in LMP1 with Toyota Gazoo Racing’s long-awaited win but also a first podium for the Rebellion R13, in LMP2 with G-Drive Racing’s fourth back-to-back win at the 24 Hours. Let’s look back at the most exhausting week of the year…

Toyota Gazoo Racing wins 24 Hours of Le Mans

 

This 2018 edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans had to be Toyota’s. Having been so unlucky in the past in La Sarthe, the Japanese manufacturer was dead set on finally winning Le Mans.
ORECA Group is particularly proud to have been part of this programme – having brought operational support to Toyota Gazoo Racing – and glad to see all of the team’s hard work paying off today, in the greatest way.

LMP2: fourth win back to back for ORECA chassis

ORECA chassis shone and reached the highest step of the podium in class in La Sarthe those past three years: KCMG’s ORECA 05 (2015) then Alpine A460 (2016), and Jackie Chan DC Racing x Jota’s ORECA 07 (2017). After last year’s incredible edition, with an overall podium, it seemed difficult to do any better or even repeat that achievement.

It is the second consecutive year that the ORECA 07 has won La Sarthe’s twice-around-the-clock race, this time with Russian team G-Drive Racing (managed by French team TDS Racing). Alongside them on the podium are Signatech Alpine Matmut and their Alpine A470 designed by ORECA, as well as Graff Racing’s No. 39 ORECA 07. TDS Racing’s No. 28 ORECA 07 finished just off the podium in fourth place. Then, within the Top 10, Jackie Chan DC Racing’s No. 37 car was sixth to cross the finish line, followed by DragonSpeed’s No. 31 – Nathanaël Berthon posted the best lap time during the race in 3.27.200 – then No. 38.

The No. 40 car had to withdraw having gone off track. On the provisional podium was IDEC Sport Racing’s No. 48 which was forced to drop out too in the final hours of the race due to a mechanical issue. Though let’s not forget their great pole position achieved during the qualifying sessions (3.24.842).

This new victory marks the fourth consecutive win for an ORECA chassis at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Having started manufacturing ten years ago, ORECA Technology has once again demonstrated its legitimacy and experience in designing and producing endurance race cars that are fast and reliable.

First podium for the Rebellion R13

ORECA’s know-how as race car manufacturer was also beautifully showcased this Sunday by the first podium of the LMP1 Rebellion 13, designed and developed in Signes workshops for Swiss team Rebellion Racing. With this first podium, achieved less than three months after the first shakedown, the R13 showed potential and reliability, having made it through Le Mans’s legendary tough race.

They’ve said

ORECA Group CEO Hugues de Chaunac: “Once again, Le Mans has put us through the wringer! Emotions are heightened here. And with those three fantastic programmes, this year wasn’t a walk in the park. First I want to say congratulations to Toyota Gazoo Racing for their superb double win. Toyota has been an integral part of ORECA’s work since 2011. Together we’ve experienced some amazing moments of joy but also great disappointment. To win Le Mans was almost and obvious outcome this year, and yet this victory is so well-deserved, it’s a true achievement and I’m proud of all the work put in by the team.
About LMP2 class, what can I say…? Second win back to back for the ORECA 07 and fourth one for our ORECA chassis. I’ve always lived life to the fullest and when I see where we’ve come from and where we’ve got to, I just can’t believe it. I want to thank all LMP2 teams for having trusted us and for taking our fantastic ORECA 07 to such a high level.
Finally, Rebellion. A crazy project that we only launched six months ago in partnership with Rebellion Racing. After the ORECA 07’s great successes in LMP2, returning to the fastest class as a manufacturer was incredible. The first shakedown took place in April, and today the car is on the podium of the 24 Hours of Le Mans! There’s still a lot of work to be done to turn this car into a champion, but for now, results speak for themselves… Our design bureau has done a sterling job.
I also want to say a word about the fabulous work that ORECA Events has delivered here for ten days managing Toyota’s hospitality space and fan zone as well as Matmut’s structure. Our on-site staff has done impeccable work. We’re now going to celebrate those great successes and will soon look to the next edition…”

ORECA Group Technical Director David Floury: “Our week with Toyota went well and this result rewards several years of work. This win won’t replace 2016’s victory when we fought against Porsche and Audi. This year it was a different lineup but still, it’s a great reward.
It’s a very positive outcome for ORECA Group. Our partnership with Toyota, initiated in 2011, is a great satisfaction for all those who have been involved in the programme.
Another source of satisfaction is our Rebellion which only first took to the track two months ago, then crossed the finish line of the 24 Hours of Le Mans in third and fourth places behind Toyota.
Finally, just as satisfying, is our result in LMP2. It was important for us to do something good again this year. We’re in the first fourth places in class which means that the first eight cars overall received support from ORECA. It was a secret goal, an impossible dream, yet it turned into a reality!” 

TDS Racing Team Manager Xavier Combet: “This race was full of unforeseen developments for the No. 28. We had little issues over night following on a contact with a GT. That made us tumble down the rankings. We went off track this morning which cost us precious seconds. Yet each time Loïc, Matthieu and François managed to catch up. We’re one of the only crews featuring a bronze driver to have fought within the Top 3 throughout the entire race. We were one hair short of the podium but considering all the work we’ve put in, I have no regret. Of course, I’m really glad for the No. 26 car which we’ve been managing for two seasons. To win Le Mans is extraordinary, it’s a first for us. We’re going to need some time to realise what’s just happened. The ORECA 07 has once again showed its full performance range. We’ve been working hand in hand with ORECA since 2011. Today’s result confirms once more (but we didn’t have a single doubt) that we made the right decision seven years ago.” 

*provisional results subject to technical verifications

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