Sunday, July 14, 2024


Jota forced to vary chassis after Ilott's crash at Le Mans during second practice

With just minutes left in two-hour night practice on the Circuit de la Sarthe on Wednesday, Ilott suffered a significant slip on the famous Esses circuit between Dunlop and Tetre Rouge, causing the session to finish prematurely.

Although TV cameras didn’t see Ilott hit the guardrails, visuals of the crash's aftermath showed heavy damage to the front of the Porsche, and several other marshals attended the scene.

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In a press release released on Thursday morning, Jota revealed that Ilott escaped unscathed as he was already seen getting out of the automotive after the accident.

However, the team also announced that the damage to the automotive was so severe that it might have to modify to a spare chassis before the third rehearsal later that afternoon.

“Following the accident last night at Le Mans with Callum Ilot and the number 12 Porsche 963 Hypercar, we have assessed the situation carefully to understand our options for the rest of the weekend,” said Jota team principal Dieter Gass.

“Most importantly, Callum is unharmed and we’re very grateful for the short help from the race marshals and medical team. Unfortunately, the monocoque was damaged and requires alternative.

“This is our primary priority now and the team is working extremely hard to construct the automotive. In parallel, we remain in constant contact with the ACO and FIA to be certain that we have now fulfilled all regulatory obligations before we are able to communicate our next steps.

It seems likely that the team will now exit the Hyperpole qualifying section, which starts at 8pm on Thursday and can feature the eight fastest cars from each of the three classes.

There are strict rules for rebuilding cars at Le Mans and the team said it can ensure they meet all requirements set by the series' regulators.

Ilott's #12 Jota initially missed the Hyperpole after setting the ninth-fastest time in Q1, but improved after the #7 GR010 HYBRID Toyota was eliminated as a result of Kamui Kobayashi's red flag.

This means Ilott and team-mate Will Stevens and Norman Nato are prone to start the race from eighth on the grid, while the number 38's sister Jota Porsche, shared by Jenson Button, Phil Hanson and Oliver Rasmussen, will finish seventeenth.

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