Le Mans 24: What you need to know

By on
Race event, Le Mans 24 hours, Circuit de la Sarthefr

The week of the 2018 edition of the epic Le Mans 24 hours race is ongoing, with the first official testing kicking off on Wednesday. Here's what you need to know to follow the events going on at Le Mans.

Tuesday morning saw the 180 drivers competing in this year's Le Mans race gather together for the traditional group ohoto on the start finish straight at the Sarthe circuit.

This year's Le Mans has drew lots of headlines already thanks to current McLaren F1 driver Fernando Alonso competing for Toyota Gazoo Racing. He is however joined by numerous former Formula One drivers, most of whom competed before at Le Mans.

Bruno Senna, Kamui Kobayashi, Sébastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima, Fernando Alonso, Jenson Button, Vitaly Petrov, Paul di Resta, Giedo van der Garde, Jan Lammers, Pastor Maldonado, Juan Pablo Montoya, Felipe Nasr, Antonio Giovinazzi, Sébastien Bourdais, Gianmaria Bruni, Giancarlo Fisichella and Pedro Lamy will all compete this week in various classes.

Following the departure of Porsche and Audi, Toyota remains the sole LMP1 Hybrid manufacturer, with 2 cars. They are likely to be fastest, and if reliability is there, one of the Toyota's is most likely to take this year's victory. It would be long overdue, as Toyota has come close repeatedly, but has yet to win Le Mans since it re-entered WEC several years ago.

Timetable

Le Mans literally takes a whole week to gear up to the actual race, with scrutineering, autograph sessions and drivers parade on the list of events.

The schedule for the on-track action is as follows:

SessionStartDuration
Free PracticeWed 13 Jun - 16h004H
Qualifying 1Wed 13 Jun - 22h002H
Qualifying 2Thu 14 Jun - 19h002H
Qualifying 3Thu 14 Jun - 22h002H
Warm-upSat 16 Jun - 09h0045min
RaceSat 16 Jun - 15h0024H

All times local, GMT+2

Who to watch

From 60 cars pounding around Le Mans, it can be difficult to find out who you're looking at. However, as always, the spotter guides from Andy Blackmore help out!

Coverage informtion

The race will again be shown live on Eurosport (including the 2nd “Road to le Mans” race), this being the 2nd year of a four years deal to 2020 with the broadcaster, but in America Velocity will take over broadcasts from Fox Network.

Radio Le Mans will cover the Test Day and race week from Wednesday 13th on 91.2FM. (www.radiolemans.com)

Live timing can continue to be found at (fiawec.alkamelsystems.com)