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T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
6/5/19 12:38 p.m.

10 Days till race day. Like last year, I am going to try to watch as much of it as possible on TV and/or streaming.

It looks like they are limiting the fuel load of the non-hybrid LMP1 cars to make sure Toyota can go a lap longer on their stints and also they are able to refuel faster, so baring some sort of disaster, it looks like the two Toyota cars will battle for the overall win, and the privateer teams will battle for the final podium position.

The GTE class I expect will once again come down to who gets the best BOP adjustment. Looks like the C7.R has been the fastest so far, so they are probably doomed. Clever and subtle sandbagging seems to be the best strategy up until race day.

The only prediction I am willing to make at this point is that a GTE-AM Ferrari will be involved in some sort of on track incident.

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
6/5/19 12:53 p.m.

The interesting thing these days about LeMans is it's basically a road rally for the top teams other than LMP1.  

All of the lesser class speeds are based on a multiplier of the LMP1 cars- LMP2 = LMP1*X1, GTE Pro = LMP2 * X2, etc.  So much of the post race conversation is about who did a lap that was too fast.  Of course, assuming there are no breakdowns.  

Over the last few years, the best team was the one who was the absolute class limit speed for the largest amount of the race.  Even the shorter pit time strategy has kind of been muted- at one point, a car that could do one more lap than the rest could win by pit avoidance.  But now it's really hard to get any real advantage.

Still a great race to watch- but it's a "sprint" rally based on the speeds of the next higher class.

sleepyhead the buffalo
sleepyhead the buffalo Mod Squad
6/5/19 1:22 p.m.

In reply to alfadriver :

I think those rules shenanigans are part of the reason I put a bigger emphasis on watching more of the N24 of late.  Also, the R2AK is usually going on.

W/ the N24, it's cool to see TCR cars running not that far behind GT3 cars.  Maybe LeMans should get rid of LMP2, and slot TCR cars in at the bottom in their stead?  Would be much closer to the original concept.  devil

DirtyBird222
DirtyBird222 UberDork
6/5/19 4:49 p.m.
sleepyhead the buffalo said:

In reply to alfadriver :

I think those rules shenanigans are part of the reason I put a bigger emphasis on watching more of the N24 of late.  Also, the R2AK is usually going on.

W/ the N24, it's cool to see TCR cars running not that far behind GT3 cars.  Maybe LeMans should get rid of LMP2, and slot TCR cars in at the bottom in their stead?  Would be much closer to the original concept.  devil

The FIA/ACO need to ditch LMP1 and just go with a full alignment with IMSA and the DPi. The GTD/GT3 field from around the world would be excellent. DPi vs. LMP2 would be great. LMGT is already great. 

I used to foam at the mouth waiting for Le Mans weekend. I camped out at a buddies house to watch it last year while I was out of town for work, that's about the only reason I watched it. Other than the the FIA/ACO have watered the race down so much. It's hard to get excited about watching 2 cars in the top field from the same manufacturer. The wonky rules and lack of creativity have made it a snoozer. 

When Audi was dominating back in the early 2000s it was still exciting to watch and hope one of the dark horses would topple them. I still remember my jaw hitting the floor with the 4 minute rear end change. 

racerfink
racerfink UltraDork
6/5/19 9:25 p.m.

The TCR cars are right there with GT4 cars, not GT3.  IMSA had to slow down the TCR cars in the Michelin Pilot Challenge series because they ran comparable lap times to the GT4 cars in that same series.

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
6/6/19 9:17 a.m.
DirtyBird222 said:
sleepyhead the buffalo said:

In reply to alfadriver :

I think those rules shenanigans are part of the reason I put a bigger emphasis on watching more of the N24 of late.  Also, the R2AK is usually going on.

W/ the N24, it's cool to see TCR cars running not that far behind GT3 cars.  Maybe LeMans should get rid of LMP2, and slot TCR cars in at the bottom in their stead?  Would be much closer to the original concept.  devil

The FIA/ACO need to ditch LMP1 and just go with a full alignment with IMSA and the DPi. The GTD/GT3 field from around the world would be excellent. DPi vs. LMP2 would be great. LMGT is already great. 

I used to foam at the mouth waiting for Le Mans weekend. I camped out at a buddies house to watch it last year while I was out of town for work, that's about the only reason I watched it. Other than the the FIA/ACO have watered the race down so much. It's hard to get excited about watching 2 cars in the top field from the same manufacturer. The wonky rules and lack of creativity have made it a snoozer. 

When Audi was dominating back in the early 2000s it was still exciting to watch and hope one of the dark horses would topple them. I still remember my jaw hitting the floor with the 4 minute rear end change. 

IMHO, the core problem in all racing these days is that the cars are too fast, and the ways they are making them slower makes it really tough to compete.

LMP1 is more about proving a technology is something people should use in their personal cars- for years, the ACO gave a huge benefit to diesels, which gave VW a monopoly on which brand (Bently & Audi) wins the race.  Now it's about Hybrid, and Toyota is getting the call.   So it's kind of surprising to me that there are even any other teams competing in LMP1 given the choices they have to run a cheaper car AND be competitive.

The other classes are all based off the speed of LMP1.

But even without that- the GT cars are so limited in their performance that it's not *really* that much of a challenge to sprint at "vmax" TSD speeds for 24 hours.  Yes, there are teams that have issues and struggle- that happens, but when you see so many cars finish on the same lap- that just says sprinting is very possible.

At this point in racing history, I would suggest just dropping the prototypes for a few years and unlimiting the GT cars.  The way I would slow them down is a fuel flow restriction- you have X amount of energy to use at a given rate, and that's it.  How you deal with it is your choice.  No ballance of performance BS, just let them run flat out with that flow restriction.  The various compromises that are made to make enough power at that rate will introduce more than enough reliability problems that the solutions will be quite varied.

It's kind of funny that F1 and Indycar have the same issue- which is one of the main reasons they have to limit the chassis/powertrains so much.  And those limitations are why there are so few people building their own cars for the 500 or any F1 team.

P cars were fun when anyone could build one and try to win a race.  As was Indy and F1.  Now that P cars are like they are- they are not fun to follow.   Let the GT cars have the race.  Heck, they are a lot closer in concept to the P cars of the mid 60's anyway.  GT, GT3, and GT4 would fill the field out very nicely.

DirtyBird222
DirtyBird222 UberDork
6/6/19 1:34 p.m.

The GT1 cars of the late 90s were that Delta between GTP/WSC prototypes and the LMP1 cars that dominated the early 00s. They were amazing, we got awesome road cars to drool over, and it gave us the Panoz GTR-1. 

_
_ HalfDork
6/6/19 7:13 p.m.

 It’s the same problem in every racing situation, the cars need to go back to being basically stock chassis. It’s the problem in Lemans, F1, NASCAR, rally, etc.  every car needs to be a production vehicle with at least 100,000 units made,  and sold to regular Joes. The stock suspension pick up points should remain the same. And absolutely no tube frames! Oh, and they should be able to choose any tire manufacture they want as long as it is 200 treadwear. 

With a universal set of rules applying to all of the major racing sanctions, it would allow for one car to be designed that could potentially dominate everything. Then we get to see who has the really big balls.

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
6/6/19 8:43 p.m.

But that’s just stock car racing. Real race cars are a different breed. And tube frames are way outdated.

The problem is that there’s just so much optimization that can be done, so much knowledge that can be applied. Unless the rule set is ridiculously restrictive, all it takes is one or two teams to apply serious effort and outrun the rest of the pack. To get to “Anyone can build one” means you have to deny big chunks of technology so there’s a limit to how much work it takes to be competitive. The LMP hybrids gave us an excellent range of design solutions and wicked racing for a while, but now that it’s just Toyota it’s no longer anything more than a demonstration class. 

The most interesting race class right now? Ultra4 racing. It’s off-road Can-Am. 

DirtyBird222
DirtyBird222 UberDork
6/7/19 7:30 a.m.
Keith Tanner said:

But that’s just stock car racing. Real race cars are a different breed. And tube frames are way outdated.

The problem is that there’s just so much optimization that can be done, so much knowledge that can be applied. Unless the rule set is ridiculously restrictive, all it takes is one or two teams to apply serious effort and outrun the rest of the pack. To get to “Anyone can build one” means you have to deny big chunks of technology so there’s a limit to how much work it takes to be competitive. The LMP hybrids gave us an excellent range of design solutions and wicked racing for a while, but now that it’s just Toyota it’s no longer anything more than a demonstration class. 

The most interesting race class right now? Ultra4 racing. It’s off-road Can-Am. 

Tube-frame IMSA GTO, GTU, GT1 cars from the 80s and 90s were badace and would still be cool on track today even if the tech is outdated. 

z31maniac
z31maniac MegaDork
6/7/19 8:04 a.m.
_ said:

 It’s the same problem in every racing situation, the cars need to go back to being basically stock chassis. It’s the problem in Lemans, F1, NASCAR, rally, etc.  every car needs to be a production vehicle with at least 100,000 units made,  and sold to regular Joes.

How does one make a 1-seater, open wheel car that will sell 100,000 units? Or are you saying there should no longer be classes like that? 

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
6/7/19 8:09 a.m.
DirtyBird222 said:
Keith Tanner said:

But that’s just stock car racing. Real race cars are a different breed. And tube frames are way outdated.

The problem is that there’s just so much optimization that can be done, so much knowledge that can be applied. Unless the rule set is ridiculously restrictive, all it takes is one or two teams to apply serious effort and outrun the rest of the pack. To get to “Anyone can build one” means you have to deny big chunks of technology so there’s a limit to how much work it takes to be competitive. The LMP hybrids gave us an excellent range of design solutions and wicked racing for a while, but now that it’s just Toyota it’s no longer anything more than a demonstration class. 

The most interesting race class right now? Ultra4 racing. It’s off-road Can-Am. 

Tube-frame IMSA GTO, GTU, GT1 cars from the 80s and 90s were badace and would still be cool on track today even if the tech is outdated. 

That’s historic racing :) We might as well replace the GT classes with a bunch of MGBs and Spitfires!

j_tso
j_tso New Reader
6/7/19 8:12 a.m.
_ said:

 It’s the same problem in every racing situation, the cars need to go back to being basically stock chassis. It’s the problem in Lemans, F1, NASCAR, rally, etc.  every car needs to be a production vehicle with at least 100,000 units made,  and sold to regular Joes. The stock suspension pick up points should remain the same. And absolutely no tube frames! Oh, and they should be able to choose any tire manufacture they want as long as it is 200 treadwear. 

There's touring car racing for that, and look how popular it is compared with GT or any other series.  They are just not fast enough to be a spectacle, most people want to see sexy looking cars go fast.  Production cars are also more difficult to repair than tubes attached to a carbon tub since they're supposed to crumple.  I think Super GT does it right: power limit, success ballast, and a tire war.

I haven't kept up very much with WEC, but have the other LMP1s become more reliable?  Last year's 24 had Rebellion finish 3rd and 4th then the next LMP1 in 41st overall.  Looking at the results on the WEC site they don't seem to be doing that great unless they're being crashed out all the time, and these are only 6 hour races.

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
6/8/19 8:26 a.m.
T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
6/15/19 8:43 a.m.

Looks like it may rain. 

Vracer111
Vracer111 Reader
6/15/19 10:45 a.m.

Feeds I 'm watching on Youtube...

Ford racing main (links to all 4 cars in description):

https://youtu.be/bmOCP-JB6r4

 

Alpine:

https://youtu.be/7_MHqbFMIjQ

 

Motul (Rebellion Racing):

https://youtu.be/snELu2T1ZOs

fasted58
fasted58 MegaDork
6/15/19 11:24 a.m.

also Motor Trend TV

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner MegaDork
6/15/19 12:12 p.m.
T.J. said:

Looks like it may rain. 

It always rains at Le Mans...

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
6/15/19 1:00 p.m.

Seems like the pole sitting Aston hasn’t been coping with the BOP changes they were awarded with after qualifying. One of the announcers brought up the idea that perhaps they had a great qualifying setup, but not a great race setup and their lack of pace may not all be down to reduced power. 

Aaron_King
Aaron_King PowerDork
6/15/19 1:04 p.m.

GTE Pro is quite a race so far. 

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
6/15/19 1:12 p.m.
T.J. said:

Seems like the pole sitting Aston hasn’t been coping with the BOP changes they were awarded with after qualifying. One of the announcers brought up the idea that perhaps they had a great qualifying setup, but not a great race setup and their lack of pace may not all be down to reduced power. 

Just watching the Studio 24 for 2pm, and Tom Christianson is pointing out that the Astons have really poor rear tire deg.  So that in the second stint for the car, they are pretty slow.  Given that the GT cars seem to have very similar lap times for fresh tires, full tanks, the BOP seems pretty correct.

T.J.
T.J. MegaDork
6/15/19 1:21 p.m.

In reply to alfadriver :

Yeah, it was interesting to see the Aston’s fastest lap was 0.1 sec faster then the leading 911. Seems like BOP is not the culprit. 

alfadriver
alfadriver MegaDork
6/15/19 1:47 p.m.

Ouch. Poor vette, but it seems as if he tried to squeeze into a spot that didn’t exist 

759NRNG
759NRNG SuperDork
6/15/19 7:29 p.m.

And Ben Keating from Tomball/Texas was in 39th driving what I don't care...

BrewCity20
BrewCity20 New Reader
6/15/19 8:33 p.m.
alfadriver said:

The interesting thing these days about LeMans is it's basically a road rally for the top teams other than LMP1.  

All of the lesser class speeds are based on a multiplier of the LMP1 cars- LMP2 = LMP1*X1, GTE Pro = LMP2 * X2, etc.  So much of the post race conversation is about who did a lap that was too fast.  Of course, assuming there are no breakdowns.  

Over the last few years, the best team was the one who was the absolute class limit speed for the largest amount of the race.  Even the shorter pit time strategy has kind of been muted- at one point, a car that could do one more lap than the rest could win by pit avoidance.  But now it's really hard to get any real advantage.

Still a great race to watch- but it's a "sprint" rally based on the speeds of the next higher class.

Total Newbie question....

What do you mean the lower classes are based on the the LMP 1 cars? I thought the lower classes were limited techincally, is there a time component to it as well?

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