Baden-Württemberg International Corvette Club

24 Hours of Le Mans Pages

24 Hours of Le Mans 2010 'Corvettes 50th Le Mans Anniversary'!

This was the 50th Anniversary of Corvettes first participation at Le Mans, where they placed 1st in class!  Click here for a video.  This was a Le Mans trip to be remembered for the participation of John Fitch and the #3 Corvette who won 50 years ago!

Every year we pack up and head to the most famous auto race in the world...  the 24 Hours of Le Mans Race in Le Mans, France!  We join over 250,000 spectators for a weekend of fast cars, parties and entertainment.

For members of our club along with other Corvette clubs from around Europe, we have our own special home called 'Camp Corvette'.  Located near 'Porsche Curve' and just down from the newly named 'Corvette Curve' we setup track side, with a viewing platform, secured parking, plenty of space to pitch your tent and of course the 'fest tent' where all our 'extra' activities are held.

Aside from the race, our weekend is full of raffles, VIP guests, games, food, 'special events' and of course the 'World Cup' on TV every 4 years.

The fun starts on Friday where after check in, folks head into downtown Le Mans for the evening 'Drivers Parade' either as spectators or participants (driving their Corvette) in the parade.  Corvettes are well known at Le Mans, and if you're driving in the parade be prepared to sign autographs and pose for photo's with Corvette fans all along the parade route while 'security' attempts to rush you on.  For those who choose not to head into town, there's plenty to do around Camp Corvette and the track, while our dinner pig is slowly roasting on the spit.

Saturday dawns with the roar of engines as the cars warm up and get a little practice, followed by the 'Old Timers' race then parade laps for cars from the different manufactures. Of course GM is no exception and around noon Corvettes take to the track for our parade lap.  There's nothing like getting on the track, slowing down by Camp Corvette then 'smoking the tires' as you head towards the 'Ford Chicane' leading into 'Pit Row' or the 'Start/Finish Line' where the crowds have already started to fill the grand stands.  Once again, you rev up the engine and do a 'rolling burn out' across the 'Start/Finish Line' for the crowds and TV cameras, then it's off to 'Dunlap Curve', 'Tertre Rouge', 'Mulsanne Straight', the tight 'Mulsanne Turn', 'Indianapolis' then 'Arnage', 'Corvette' and the end of our lap.  Things then quite down as start time grows near, it's almost 3 PM and the world is awaiting the start of the 78th running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans!  We watch as the 'Pace Car' leads the pack of race cars past our viewing stand, at 3 PM the lead car will cross the 'Starting Line' and for the next 24 hours we will hear nothing but the roar of engines!

Sunday dawns, it's been a long night.  For those who have stayed up all night to watch the action they still have 9 or so hours before the race will end.  For those who got some sleep, they have a lot to catch up on, because the night has taken it's toll on the cars and drivers.  As 3 PM rolls around, it's tight...  The race started with 55 cars in 4 different classes but many have fallen by the wayside.  The GT-1 Class alone has lost all but 2 cars, but Aston manages to get their car back out for the last 2 laps for a 3rd place finish.  Corvette hasn't done well, for the first time ever, both of GM's GT-2 Class cars are out of the race, and the French Corvette team of Luc Alphand Aventures has lost one of their two Corvettes.  It's a few minutes before 3 PM and the safety crews are on the track with colored flags, signaling the final lap of the race, as the cars drop into line.  3 PM, the winning car crosses the Finish Line, it's over!  Luc Alphand Aventures has scored a 2nd place finish for the GT-1 Class!  In the end, only 27 of 55 cars managed to complete the race.

Here's some photo's from Friday, including a visit from Corvette Racing Drivers, Car #63's Antonio Garcia, Jan Magnussen & Johnny O'Connell.  And of course the 'famous' 1960 Corvette #3.  BWICC has setup camp which of course includes 'siesta time'!  Then Corvettes, dinner, entertainment (Can-Can dancers!), and the wonderful 'staff' who make it all possible!  Finally all is quite, it's Friday night and everyone's getting as much rest as possible for tomorrow is the big day...

               

               

               

           

Photo's provided by 'Marmaduke'

               

               

               

               

               

               

               

               

A video of Saturday's 'Track Lap' led by John Fitch in the #3 Cunningham 1960 Corvette, Class winner of the 1960 24 Hours of Le Mans Race!  Umm I had some 'technical difficulties' with the camera!