Toyota Wins At Le Mans With Fernando Alonso, Nakajima, and Buemi

Toyota Wins At Le Mans With Fernando Alonso, Nakajima, and Buemi

This year, he sought permission from McLaren to dovetail his F1 programme with an attempt to win Le Mans, which became an entry in the entire World Endurance Championship.

He explained a loss of concentration was behind the mistake that resulted in the #7 Toyota TS050 HYBRID he shared with Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez dropping a lap behind the winning auto.

Alonso has had a challenging time in F1 of late, with his McLaren not yet capable of securing podiums or victories.

And Kobayashi missed a pit stop in the penultimate hour and had to complete much of a lap on electrical power alone because he did not have enough fuel.

Toyota's closest challengers were the two Rebellion Racing cars which finished 12 laps back. "I've got into the rhythm of the night", Alonso had said over the team radio as he closed the gap. "We finished the race without any issue on both cars so I feel we all deserved to win the race".

Alonso, who is also a double Monaco Grand Prix victor, has made a big play about becoming only the second driver to take the "Triple Crown of Motorsport" and Le Mans is the second box to be ticked.

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Twice a Monaco Grand Prix victor, he now wants to win the Indianapolis 500.

But Toyota insisted that the two cars went into the race with equal chances of winning.

"I attempted [Indy] previous year with that intention. Here we were leading and I was anxious I'd miss the opportunity again". The Toyota Gazoo racing team finally managed to score a victory at the legendary 24 Hour race.

It was the #3 Rebellion R13-Gibson of Mattias Beche, Gustavo Menezes and Thomas Laurent that finished in third place, standing on the final step of the overall podium, emerging victorious over Rebellion Racing's lead #1 vehicle fronted by Andre Lotterer, Neel Jani and Bruno Senna which was the victim of an accident on the opening lap of the race.

Former Formula One champion Jenson Button raced for the private SMP team, but the Briton's non-hybrid auto faced early problems with engine trouble that forced its retirement in the final hour. One of its cars made the finish, albeit well down the order after numerous problems.

Other categories were also decided very quickly, with the Porsche 911 RSR doing well in GTE Pro and another former F1 driver, Jean-Eric Vergne, leading the way in G-Drive in LMP2.

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