The surroundings will be familiar even if the team is not for Chris Dyson next week at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. For the first time since 2004, Dyson will drive in the world’s greatest auto race, this time with RML in a Mazda-powered Lola coupe - just as he does in the American Le Mans Series’ LMP2 class for his Dyson Racing team. Although he has participated at Le Mans once, Dyson is well aware of the significance and mystique it holds on both competitors and fans.
“Le Mans is unlike any event in the world because it so international and so historical,” he said. “The heritage goes back several decades. The character of the race has evolved but never changed. To be an American competing over there, I find the people are very receptive. There are 250,000 or 300,000 people there and you’re racing on what are effectively commuter roads the rest of the year and driving between towns at 200 mph. It’s really unbelievable.
Chris Dyson climbs in
“The (RML) car is fundamentally the same as what race in the American Le Mans Series. Their Lola is very similar to ours. The engine package is similar to ours. Familiarity I think breeds success. I won’t have any trouble getting up to speed. I did the race a few years ago with Jan Lammers (seventh place overall in a Judd-powered Dome prototype) and got the first Le Mans out of the way and under my belt, and we had a good result. I expect we should have a very strong run this year.”
The 77th running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans is scheduled for 3 p.m. CET (9 a.m. EDT) on Saturday, June 13 to 3 p.m. CET (9 a.m. EDT) on Sunday, June 14. SPEED will provide live television coverage. Flag-to-flag coverage of the race, qualifying and practice will be available at radiolemans.com.
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