Porsche beat Jackie Chan DC to Le Mans victory with remarkable comeback
Porsche produced a spectacular comeback to win a dramatic 2017 edition of Le Mans, beating Jackie Chan DC Racing’s LMP2 into second place.
The two big hitters going into the start of Le Mans were Porsche and Toyota, but the race rarely goes according to plan and both teams were riddled with problems throughout a dramatic 24 hours.
Toyota’s #7 had opened up a comfortable lead as night fell on Saturday, but could not find full power after an extended spell behind a safety car and, after an unsuccessful attempt to breathe new life into the engine, was forced to withdraw.
And the night went from bad to worse for Toyota, who had already had their #8 car ruled out of contention, when #9 suffered a major puncture to the left rear and was unable to make it back to the pits before the damage became too severe.
Porsche #2 had spent over an hour in the pits on Saturday – something that was expected to rule the car out of contention – but Porsche #1 built up a huge lead after Toyota’s overnight failings, pulling 14 laps clear as the race headed into its final quarter.
But the hybrid went the same way as Toyota’s, suffering a mechanical failure at exactly the wrong point on the track, leaving 10km to hobble back to the pits – a journey that a flagging car was not able to complete.
That left Jackie Chan DC Racing’s LMP2 out in-front, setting a record as they became the first lower category car in history to lead Le Mans.
An astonishing victory looked a possibility… but Porsche had other ideas.
The #2 car had been rapidly making up time ever since their hour in the pits and went into the final few hours knowing they could catch the leaders.
And catch them they did, easing past with a little over an hour to go, setting up what amounted to an hour of victory laps as Porsche avoided any fateful mechanicals with the win in sight.
Jackie Chan DC become the first LMP2 car to podium at Le Mans.
And, with the race threatening to peter out, Aston Martin and Corvette served up some late drama in GTE as the British company produced a last-lap overtake to secure the category title.