Ford Racing to Return to Le Mans for 2017 24-Hour Grand Prix

Last year, Ford Racing reached a milestone when it returned to Le Mans. The 2016 Grand Prix marked the 50th anniversary of Ford’s first Le Mans race, which it won with its original GT40s and took first, second, and third place victories for the GT class category. During the 2016 race, Ford once again rekindled its rivalry with Ferrari.

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Ford was able to celebrate a first and third place finish for the 2016 24-hour race in the LM GTE Pro category. The number 68 car, driven by the team of Sebastien Bourdais, Joey Hand, and Dirk Muller took first place. The number 69 car, driven by the team of Ryan Briscoe, Scott Dixon, and Richard Westbrook took third place. Ford’s number 66 car managed a fourth place win, while their number 67 car finished ninth.

Ford is once again using the Ford Chip Ganassi Racing team and the same four Ford GT vehicles it built from the ground up for the 2016 racing season. The racing teams only have a few minor changes for the upcoming Le Mans 24-hour race in June.

  • Ford has brought on Luis Felipe “Pipo” Derani from Brazil to join Harry Tincknell and Andy Priaulx in the number 67 car that finished ninth last year, with hopes of improving their rankings in this year’s race at Le Mans. Prior to Le Mans, the newly formed team will also compete at the FIA World Endurance Championship races at Spa and Silverstone.
  • The number 68 car will continue to be driven by the same winning team as last year’s Le Mans. The team recently celebrated another victory at the 2017 Rolex 24 at Daytona, giving them a second win at a 24-hour race.
  • The third place team, which drove the number 69 car, will also keep the same driving team, with anticipation of improving upon the third place win and potentially moving up to a first or second place win this year.
  • The number 66 car features returning drivers Olivier Pla and Stefan Mucke, who will be joined by Billy Johnson for the FIA World Endurance Championship races at Silverstone, Le Mans, and Spa.

This year could also be a momentous occasion for the Ford Racing team, as it would signify the 50th anniversary of Ford’s second win at Le Mans. Furthermore, Ford also won first place in the GT category class in the 1968 and 1969 races. So, if Ford does decide to continue to participate in the 24-hour races at Le Mans, and does win this year, it opens up the possibility of claiming victory in the 2018 and 2019 races to achieve a complete 50th-anniversary winning streak.

24-Hour Grand Prix

We will look forward to the upcoming Le Mans race in June to see how the Ford racing team does. To check out the latest deals and Ford cars for sale in Bloomington, IN, please feel free to stop by our showroom at Bloomington Ford today or give us a call at 812-331-2200!

Sources

  1. http://performance.ford.com/series/ford-gt/news/articles/2016/06/ford-wins-le-mans–.html
  2. http://performance.ford.com/series/ford-gt/news/articles/wec/2017/02/full-squad-of-ford-gts-to-compete-at-2017-le-mans-24-hours.html
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Ford Racing to Return to Le Mans for 2017 24-Hour Grand Prix