50 years after the original 1-2-3 victory.
It first happened way back in 1966 when the original Ford GT40 defeated Enzo Ferrari’s seemingly unbeatable squad of Italian chariots. And now, in 2016, at the very same venue exactly 50 years later, it’s happened again. The new Ford GT No. 68 emerged victorious in the LM GTE Pro Category at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The No. 68 car, driven by Sebastian Bourdais, Joey Hand and Dirk Muller crossed the finish line at three o’clock on Sunday, while the Nos. 66 and 67 Ford GTs finished in fourth and ninth places, respectively.
The No. 68 GT went head-to-head with the No. 82 Ferrari, but it was the Ford that took the lead in the 20th hour of the grueling endurance race. The No. 66 GT was also in a prime position earlier in the race but suffered an electric problem that made it fall behind.
The No. 67 GT also had an issue with its gearbox which occurred at the very beginning of the race, thus forcing the car to play catch up for the full 24 hours. “This is an historic moment for the Ford Motor Company,” stated an understandably excited Bill Ford, chairman of his great-grandfather’s company. “We dared to dream that we could return to Le Mans, 50 years after the incredible 1966 win, and take on the toughest competition in the world. The pride we all felt when the Ford GT crossed the line at Le Mans is indescribable.”