What's The Greatest Moment In Le Mans History?

Illustration for article titled What's The Greatest Moment In Le Mans History?

Racing is about more than just cars going fast around a grid. Racing is about stories. And this weekend is the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the greatest race in the world, and the source of countless great stories.

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One of my favorites is the tale of the Mazda 787B. Mazda had been running insane rotary-powered prototypes for years, but in 1991 they ran three cars that not only finished — that in and of itself is an accomplishment — but made history by winning the race and taking sixth and eighth places.

Then as now, Mazda was a much smaller company than more established rivals like Porsche, Jaguar and Mercedes. Their win at Le Mans is the only time a Japanese manufacturer has won at Circuit de La Sarthe.

But maybe that’s not the best Le Mans story ever. What is?


Contact the author at patrick@jalopnik.com.

DISCUSSION

GT40! When Ford beat Ferrari at its own game. USA USA USA....!

Ford was going to buy Ferrari, but at the last second Enzo backed out and said something along the lines of “fuck you, I don’t want my cars in Nascar” (im paraphrasing). So Ford said “oh yeah, puto?” (Paraphrasing) and started up the GT40 program and beat Ferrari at Le Mans.