Fernando Alonso and Toyota win Le Mans 24 hour race

BMW M8 GTE Le Mans 22 830x553

Fernando Alonso's Toyota wins Le Mans 24 Hours after dominant display

With a one-two finish they became only the second Japanese auto company, after Mazda in 1991, to win the world's greatest endurance race.

As the clock ticked past 24 hours, the relief was visible on all the faces of the Toyota crew in the pit and the winning drivers as they completed a victory lap with Alonso and Buemi sitting on the vehicle as Nakajima, who completed the last stint, drove.

"For us the race was gone, so we decided not to take risks, not to be aggressive", he explained.

The started the race from pole position and never looked back, going on to dominate the race with a 1-2 finish.

Toyota has at last won the 24 Hours of Le Mans, breaking a decades-long curse of bad luck and near-misses and taking the top two spots. Kobayashi qualified his vehicle in second place, exactly two minutes behind Nakajima, but it should be noted that Kobayashi still holds the all-time qualifying lap record from his 2017 run. The Toyota Gazoo racing team finally managed to score a victory at the legendary 24 Hour race.

It just shows the effects of downforce and diffuser pressure as cars attain blistering speeds across the track.

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"Le Mans once a year is not enough!"

The 36-year-old's ambition has become to win motorsport's famous "triple crown" and he competed at Indianapolis last year, impressing the regulars by running competitively and being in with a chance of victory until his engine failed in the closing stages.

In 1999, for example, Ukyo Katayama, Keiichi Tsuchiya and Toshio Suzuki's Toyota GT-One was on pace to finish first, but blew a tire in the final hour. For much of the first six hours, the two Toyota LMP1 cars traded places and by the seventh hour of the race, the #7 vehicle had built a lead exceeding two minutes. Their fastest auto was taken out when a driver from another team, whose suit happened to be in the same orange as the safety workers', tried to show his support.

The heart-wrenching losses were addresses by team president Hisatake Murata.

"The new regulations for the FIA World Endurance Championship, which come into effect for the 2020/2021 season, are the result of hard work between members of the FIA, ACO, manufacturers, and teams", said Jean Todt, FIA president.

"This is definitely the biggest win of my career", said the Swiss driver.

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