An almost perfect lap in qualifying from Jernej Simončič saw us starting from pole position in the first ever 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual.
Tom Dillmann lined up on the grid, to take the start, we a too quick getaway saw him getting a drive through penalty, which sent us near the back of the LMP2 field.
The pace was very good and after 6 hours and 20 minutes of racing, Jesper Pedersen retook the lead. The enjoyment was a short one, because just one lap later, Jesper had a wheel failure, which sent him into the wall between the Porsche curves and the Ford chicanes. That forced us to make an early pitstop where Tom Dillmann got back in the car.
Esteban Guerrieri had some great battles on track with plenty of overtakes. He really proved a show to the brilliant broadcast by ACO, FIA WEC and Motorsport Games.
Three red flags were shown during the race followed by a safety car period, which brought the whole field together and that ignited quite some action on the track. Not even was the field altogether, but the classes were mixed, so often there was a couple of GTE’s in between the LMP2’s.
The final one was with just under 4 hours to go. Jesper had found a replacement for the wheel that had a failure Saturday evening and was back in the car. Sitting in 3rd place at the restart, we were well within the fight for the win despite the issues we have had. 25 seconds was all between us and the leading car.
Jernej took over from Jesper for the last two and a half hour and despite some minor damage to the car, he got his foot down.
The damage affected our top speed, which cost quite some time at a track like Le Mans. With just over twenty minutes to go, Jernej’s pressure forced a mistake by the car in P2 and he made the move. However on the Mulsanne straight, the no. 13 Rebellion Williams Esport car got passed us again, but Jernej wasn’t done. Entering the Porsche curves, he made a brave, but astonishing move around the outside to retake 2nd place for good and were on the hunt for P1.
Sadly, the gap was too big with the time left he had and Jernej brought the ByKolles Burst Esport car over the line in 2nd place for the 24 Hours of Le Mans Virtual.
We always want to win, But a result like this at such a massive event is really an achievement.
Jernej, Tom Dillmann, Esteban Guerrieri and Jesper Pedersen delivered an astonishing performance during the 24 hours.
Thanks to ByKOLLES for an amazing partnership and thanks to the Automobile Club de l’Ouest, FIA WEC and Motorsport Games for hosting this incredible event!