1991 24 Hours of Le Mans

The 59th 24 -hour Le Mans race, the Grand Prix d' Endurance les 59e 24 Heures du Mans, took place from 22 to June 23, 1991 held at the Circuit des 24 Heures.

  • 2.1 pilots after Nations
  • 2.2 Final ranking
  • 2.3 Only in the message list
  • 2.4 Class Winner
  • 2.5 racing data

The race

Before the event

Hour race at Le Mans again a scoring run of the World Sportscar Championship - 1991 was 24. In June As the teams came to the race after Le Mans, three racing events were already settled. The first race of the season, the 430 - km race at Suzuka ended with a surprise. For Peugeot, the race was only the third race of the new prototypes - the Peugeot 905 Nevertheless, Mauro Baldi and Philippe Alliot could after a travel time of 2:25:01,688 enforce clearly ahead of Jean-Louis Schlesser and Jochen Mass in the favored Mercedes -Benz C11.

The 430 - km race at Monza ended with a double victory for the factory Jaguar XJR- 14th Derek Warwick and Martin Brundle winning ahead of team-mate Teo Fabi ( Brundle was sitting in the car with the start number 4 and became the First and Second ). Also, the 430 - km race at Silverstone brought a Jaguar victory.

After Le Mans, the Jaguar team brought three works cars under the leadership of Tom Walkinshaw. The new XJR -14 was only used in training, in the race you went back to the tried and tested XJR -12. The XJR -14 already took the rules of group C had anticipated and unlike the 7.4 -liter V12 engines in the XJR- 12 has a 3.5-liter V8 engine by Cosworth as a drive. Hazards were the Trailer of Davy Jones, Raul Boesel, Michel Ferté, Bob Wollek, Teo Fabi Kenny Acheson, Derek Warwick, John Nielsen and Andy Wallace. Another XJR -12 was reported by the British TWR- Suntec Jaguars team. Dangers was the car of David Leslie, Mauro Martini and Jeff Krosnoff.

Also the team Peter Sauber brought three prototypes to Le Mans. Also at Sauber was the future Group C racing car - the Mercedes -Benz C291 - used only in training. The cockpits of the three C11 were awarded to Jean -Louis Schlesser, Jochen Mass, Alain Ferté, Jonathan Palmer, Stanley Dickens, Kurt Thiim as well as the young drivers Michael Schumacher, Fritz Kreutzpointner and Karl Wendlinger.

The two factory Peugeot were in the hands of Keke Rosberg, Yannick Dalmas, Pierre- Henri Raphanel, Mauro Baldi, Philippe Alliot and Jean -Pierre Jabouille. The two Mazda 787B was powered by a 2.6-liter rotary engine. The engines were very fuel -efficient, the rotary engine, however, was extremely loud, which was mainly for the pilot in the cockpit for loading. Hazards were the three works cars from Johnny Herbert, Bertrand Gachot, Volker Weidler, Dave Kennedy, Stefan Johansson, Maurizio Sandro - Sala, Pierre Dieudonné, Takashi and Yojiro Terada Yorino.

Porsche was by private teams, all Porsche 962 brought to the starting line, represented.

The race course

From the start, the two factory Peugeot took the lead, but were overtaken after a few rounds of the three Mercedes Benz, who turned a solid 1-2 -3- lead in the first third of the race. At Jaguar it was found that the cars far more fuel consumed as calculated, leading to slower driving forced and the overall victory moved into the distance. After three hours of travel time difference of the first Peugeot, after seven hours the second. Still led at half- time, the three Mercedes Benz, with the Schlesser / Mass / Ferté- car to the top.

On Sunday morning, however, the Mercedes got problems. Only the Palmer/Dickens/Thiim-C11 fell from a defective subfloor. Then the Schumacher / Wendlinger / Kreutzpointner prototype lost many laps due to gearbox problems in the pits. Three hours before the end of the race was also superior to the leading Mass/Schlesser/Ferté-C11. It was not until the car came by 13 clock 30 with an overheating engine on the box that led to the loss caused by damage to the engine a few laps later. Thus the way was free for the Mazda by Johnny Herbert, Volker Weidler and Bertrand Gachot. It was the first victory for a Japanese designer at Le Mans and the first success for a rotary motor.


Pilot after Nations

Final ranking

1 2 replacement car replacement car replacement car 3 4 5 not qualify unqualified 6 7 not qualified not qualified

Only in the message list

Here are the teams, drivers and vehicles that were originally registered for the competition, but it did not participate for various reasons.

Class winner

Race data

  • Reported: 46
  • Started: 38
  • Weather during the race weekend: warm and dry
  • Distance: 13.600 km
  • Honorary starter of the race: Helene Blanc, Superitendantin of the Sarthe
  • Distance of the winning team: 4922.810 km
  • Winners section: 205.333 km / h
  • Pole Position: Jean -Louis Schlesser - Mercedes- Benz C11 (# 1) - 3.31.270 = 231.741 km / h
  • Fastest race lap: Jean -Louis Schlesser - Mercedes- Benz C11 (# 1) - 3.35.564 = 227.125 km / h
  • Race series: 4th round of the World Sportscar Championship