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Molina, left, celebrates on the podium with his team. EFE
Spain's Miguel Molina secures historic victory at iconic Le Mans race
Motor racing

Spain's Miguel Molina secures historic victory at iconic Le Mans race

The Ferrari driver followed in the footsteps of Marc Gené and Fernando Alonso in winning the famous 24-hour endurance race

David Sánchez de Castro

Madrid

Monday, 17 June 2024, 14:08

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Ferrari's Miguel Molina secured Spain's third overall victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans sports car race on Sunday in a challenging race marked by torrential rain and numerous incidents.

Teaming up with Denmark's Niklas Nielsen and Italy's Antonio Fuoco, the 35-year-old from Girona, led Ferrari to triumph, joining Marc Gené and Fernando Alonso as the only Spaniards to have won at the legendary La Sarthe circuit.

Despite a race fraught with difficulties, Ferrari demonstrated resilience, managing to outperform the Toyota 7 crew, which included José María 'Pechito' López, Nick de Vries and Kamui Kobayashi, who finished second.

The other Ferrari Hypercar, the 51, driven by Antonio Giovinazzi, Alessandro Pier Guidi and James Calado, took third place.

Heavy rain

Rain was a significant factor in the endurance-focused races, causing unpredictable conditions throughout. The varied strategies from the nine different manufacturers added to the complexity, with Ferrari taking risks, such as delaying tyre changes during wet periods.

Key moments included a lengthy five-hour safety car period starting at 3.40am, making the race a real test of strategy.

As dawn broke, Ferrari’s strategic acumen shone, overcoming issues like a malfunctioning door and a nearly depleted battery. The Toyota 7 team, hindered by errors, couldn’t catch Ferrari, ensuring Molina's team clinched victory.

Other Spanish participants had mixed results: Alex Palou finished seventh in the Cadillac 2, Lorenzo Fluxá 12th in LMP2, and Dani Juncadella 11th in GT3. Unfortunately, Álex Riberas' race ended prematurely due to a crash.

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