1974 - Le Mans Winner / #7 - H. Pescarolo, G.Larrousse
A Le Mans, nel 1974, le ‘MS 670 B’ iscritte erano tre. Henri Pescarolo e Gérard Larrousse, con la vettura n.7, dominarono la corsa vincendo per il secondo anno consecutivo. The Matra-Simca MS 670 was a Prototype race car that won the Le Mans 24 Hours 3 times in a row (from 1972 to 1974) as well as the World Manufacturers Championship twice (1973 and 1974). The car was designed by Bernard Boyer and Jean-Louis Caussin. The long tail version, designed specifically for Le Mans, was still called ‘670 B’, ‘B’ being the distinctive letter of all Matras fitted with the Porsche 5-speeds gearbox. The chassis was an aluminium monocoque, with fibreglass body. The engine, whose sound was extremely loud, was a 60° 3-litres V12, with aluminium block and heads, 79.7 mm bore and 50.0 mm stroke. The motor version used in ‘74 at Le Mans was ‘MS 73’, with maximum torque of 320 Nm at 8400 RPM , and maximum power of 450 HP at 10500 rpm. On the Mulsanne straight the car could top 320 kph. Brakes had Girling ventilated discs, all-round; in 1974, the rear brakes were moved inboard. Rims dimensions were 13² x 11² at front and 15² x 15² at rear. The car weighted 693 kg. Three were the ‘670 B’s racing in Le Mans in 1974. Number 7 was driven by Henri Pescarolo and Gérard Larrousse who lead the race from start to finish, winning Le Mans for the third time in a row.
1973 - Le Mans Winner / #11 - H. Pescarolo, G.Larrousse
The Matra vs. Ferrari showdown took place on the Circuit de la Sarthe, on June 9th and 10th, 1973, a day which also marked the 50th anniversary of the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The red Ferrari No. 16 driven by Merzario and Pace started from pole and run away in the distance, chased by the blue Matra of Beltoise and Cevert. When, after two hours, the italian leaders developed a fuel piping issue, the Matra No. 10 took their place on the leaderboard, only to be dangerously delayed, and later forced to retire, by tyre issues. At the end of a grueling race, the checquered flag was waved in front of the victorious Matra Simca 670B No.11 of Henry Pescarolo and Gérard Larrousse. The podium was completed by the surviving Ferrari 312 PB n.16 of Merzario and Pace, and finally Matra’s n.12 car of Jabouille and Jaussaud.
2012 - Winner Le Mans / #1 - A.Lotterer, M. Fässler, B. Tréluyer
Year 2012 marked the first victory of a diesel-hybrid car with four-wheel drive in the 24h of Le Mans, as well as the second laurel in a row for André Lotterer, Marcel Fässler and Benoît Tréluyer. Audi evolved the R18 and R18 e-tron starting from the successful R18 TDI, whose aerodynamic lines and TDI V6 engine bear a close resemblance to those of their successor. The main competitor for this race was Toyota’s highly anticipated TS030, a gasoline-hybrid racer with four wheel drive. Despite leading briefly the race, a series of technical failures and accidents eliminated both Japanese cars from the race. The 2012 podium consisted entirely of Audi entries, with the second R18 e-tron and one R18 ULTRA in 2nd and 3rd place.
2000 - 1st 24h Le Mans / #08 - F. Biela, T. Kristensen, E. Pirro
In year 2000 Audi launched the R8 LMP model, a car destined to be dominant on all endurance race tracks for several years. For its Le Mans debut, Joest Racing entered the works cars from Ingolstadt in the LMP P 900 class. Competitors consisted mainly of works teams from Cadillac, Panoz Motorsports and Pescarolo Sport, as well as some other private LMP entries. Jackie Ickx started the race waving the French flag, and as it was to be expected, the performance of the Audi R8 LMP could not be matched. However, at the end of the first hour and for eight laps the race was surprisingly lead by Panoz’s front engined LMP-1 Roadster S. Eventually, the chequered flag was taken by car No.8 driven by Frank Biela, Tom Kristensen, Emanuele Pirro, followed by car No.9 (Aiello, McNish, Ortelli) and car No.7 (Alboreto, Abt, Capello) in second and respectively third place.