Automotive

It Turns Out The Guy With Nine Le Mans Wins Is Pretty Good At Driving


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Image: Goodwood Road & Racing

During last year’s 78th running of the Goodwood Members Meeting, the Gurney Cup was a real treat for motorsport fanatics around the world. Sharing driving duties with Sam Hancock, Tom Kristensen’s Ford GT40 was dropped to the back of the pack during a safety car, and Mr. Le Mans had to fight his way back through the field. Thankfully for everyone, it was a masterclass in fast and fun racing, and we all get to watch it from onboard.

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It’s not often that you get to see one of the best in the business doing some of his best work in a vintage car, and for that I’m extremely thankful that the Goodwood Members Meeting exists. It seems like this kind of thin happens every year, and Tom’s run is going to go down in history as one of the best. There’s clearly a talent advantage on Tom’s side, but in some of these fights it’s clear the car has a speed advantage as well. I mean, obviously a Ford GT40 is going to be faster than something like a Cooper or a Lotus, but in the GT40 vs GT40 battles, that’s where his talent really shone.

With a good car underneath him, and his wits all about him, Tom set off on an effort to run through the field and catch back up to the leaders in just a handful of laps. One by one every foe that came up to greet him was bested and dispatched with in quick succession. It seems like he made a pass, or at least an attempt, at every corner of the circuit. The foresight to set up those passes is easy to see from inside the car, and it’s quite clear that this is the kind of skill which takes you to nine Le Mans 24 victories. Rock on TK!

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