Valentino Rossi takes the lead at Le Mans in GT and Ferrari’s late-night approach disappoints

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Valentino Rossi takes the lead at Le Mans in GT and Ferrari’s late-night approach disappoints

He is without a doubt one of the men who have the most eyes on her 24 Hours of Le Mans. Everyone is looking for what they can do. Valentino Rossi in its debut on the legendary race route La Sarthe. He had been preparing for this moment for over two years. And for now, The first 6 hours of the race made it clear that the Italian was here to win the GT3 category. The 9-time motorcycle world championthe legendary number 46, did not come for a walk, far from it.

The pilot from Tavullia completed the two-hour relay without so much as a tremor in his wrist as he found himself leading the bronze class of the historic French event. He has been consistent with his times and has not shown the slightest sign of inexperience in a race with so many variables and so much complexity, where it is so easy to make mistakes..

So, after 6 hours of racing, with 18 hours to go until the end of the event, Car number 46 has been confirmed as one of the great contenders for victory in GT3 after completing a perfect first part of the race, moving up from 12th place to first in his class.

Molina, hit by rain

In the top category of Le Mans (hypercar), The scenario looks very good for Miguel Molina’s Ferrari 50. The key is to stay in the fight for the first positions, at a short distance, to face and fight the difficulties that appear at Le Mans until the decisive moments.

After the first 5 hours of the race, number AF Corse (Ferrari) was leading. 83 by a crew that included Robert Kubica (with the same car as the Ferrari officials). And behind, in full ointment, was the official Ferrari #50 of Miguel Molina, 16 seconds behind. Although this disadvantage continued to grow for the Catalan late in the afternoon, he was still very well in position to fight it all out. However, the rain played tricks on him. He caught her off guard. Or rather, the red team did not make a good decision at an important moment.

Just as they stopped, the rain got stronger. So, entering the 7th hour of the race, the Ferrari 50 mounted dry tires, with Miguel Molina handing the baton to his teammate Nicklas Nielsen. The rain started to make the track wetter and Nielsen suffered a lot to keep the car on the asphalt, need to slow down a lot. And his rivals took advantage of that, put on wet tires and gave the first blow to Miguel’s car.

In this way, Ferrari was overtaken by Toyota 8, which gave valuable time compared to AF Corse 83, although not certain because the rain is expected to continue to hit Le Mans with more force from 5 in the morning and for most in the final hours of the race.

In addition, very low temperatures are expected at night, so there may be many errors on the track and the possibility of a safety car or a dramatic crash occurring increases.

In this way, after the AF Corse 83, there was the Posche #5, the Toyota #8 and, further back, the Ferrari of Molina.

For their part, the Italians also missed the approach of Ferrari #51, last year’s winner. They didn’t make it the first time it rained, or the second, dropping several positions, to 13th place.

Alex Palou’s Cadillac took advantage of the rain with a good choice of tires, in 6th position behind the #6 Porsche. Although there is still a lot of time left and anything can happen. With so many official cars on the track and so many weather changesin a difficult race, any decision can be taken advantage of by another car to reach the table.

Alpine Abandonment

Things got worse for Alpine, which announced the abandonment of two of its cars due to a problem in its first year in the highest category of said event (Hypercar).

Peugeot, waiting

For its part, Peugeot, occupying 16th and 17th place with its two cars, lost two hours in the race, when the first drops fell on the track. There, the French team opted not to split strategies and put both of its cars on wet rubber, a strategy that did not go well.

Peugeot’s pace does not seem to be among the best in its second year after its return to Le Mans last year but stays in the race with no reliability problems and waiting to capitalize on rivals’ mistakes in climbing positions.

Fluxá leads in LMP2

In LMP2, Fluxá had a brilliant stint with the number 37 Cool Racing Oreca to lead the LMP2 category in a very tight battle with the number 22 United Autosports and the number 10 Vector.

In GT3, the Aston Martin 27 of Alex Riberas remained 9th, fighting for the top 10. Meanwhile, the early hours of the race were more difficult for the #82 Corvette of Dani Juncadella, who made it clear after dropping out in his first stint his car was at a clear disadvantage to the other teams.

He didn’t say it because he can’t do it through regulation, but it can be deduced from his words that he is not entirely satisfied with the category’s BoP (equivalence system where the FIA ​​can give or take away power and weight in cars before the race based on their potential to make the match even.)

“Completed the first stint at Le Mans with absolute success: from P7 to P14 and defending myself from a bronze driver in the last 2 laps. I bit my tongue not to take the cable later, but I was a bit broken . some things now”declared Dani on the social network ‘X’, confirming that he does not have “100 horses” of power. “If you don’t give me 100 more hp, Jesus Christ might come down, he won’t fix it,” he added. His #82 Corvette never stood a chance at the front, finishing 18th in GT3with a clear lack of competition.

Source: La Verdad

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