17 Apr 2011


Another Le Mans memory .This image is from the 1999 Le Mans 24 hour race . It shows one of the  Mercedes CLR GT1s followed by a 911 in the Porsche curves in the early evening .It was taken with a Canon EOS 5 SLR on fast slide film .
In practice Mark Webber suffered a frightening accident in one of these cars when it literally took off and flew at the end of the Mulsanne Straight .
Despite this Mercedes allowed the remaining team cars to race .As night fell on the saturday Peter Dumbreck had an identical and even more frightening accident in the number 5 car which also took off and then somersaulted over the barriers at the end of the Mulsanne Straight . He was extraordinarily lucky to survive relatively unscathed . There are many videos of the incidents on Youtube see for video of the Dumbreck accident.
Mercedes then withdraw the remaining car-the car pictured .The amazing things about this episode are that after what happened in practice and given Mercedes history at Le Mans they allowed the cars to start the race when it was glaringly obvious that they had an aerodynamic problem and secondly that both drivers walked away to tell the tale .They were obviously very strong flying cars and very lucky drivers.
The race was won by a BMW V12 LMR.

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