Ford Mustang GT3 earns podium finish at 24 Hours of Le Mans

Claims 3rd spot in Le Mans debut

Ford Mustang GT3 earns podium finish at 24 Hours of Le Mans

MANILA: The Ford Mustang GT3 claimed a podium victory at the recently-held 24 Hours of Le Mans.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • Which Ford Mustang GTD finished third?

    The #88 Ford Mustang GTD finished third overall in the 24 Hours of Le Mans LMGT3 class.
  • When did the Ford Mustang make its successful competitive debut?

    Per Ford, the Mustang made its first successful competitive debut at the 1964 Tour de France de Automobile.
  • Longtime collaborators Multimatic Motorsports and M-Sport both worked on the production of Mustang with the team being run by the successful Germany-based team Proton Competition.

    Ford entered three Mustang GT3s: the #77 car was co-piloted by Ryan Hardwick, Ben Baker and Zacharie Robichon while the #88 car’s cockpit was shared by Giorgio Roda, Dennis Olsen and Mikkel Pedersen. Announced last month, the #44 was shared by Christopher Mies, John Hartshorne and Ben Tuck.

    After a grueling endurance race, the #88 car finished third in the LMGT3 class followed by the #44 car in fourth place. Meanwhile, the #77 car finished 17th.

    Ford at Le Mans 1

    “Today’s podium performance shows that Mustang can come and compete on the global stage against the best sports cars in the world,” Ford Performance Motorsports Global Director Mark Rushbrook said.

    “It is such a fantastic feeling to be able to do it in the first outing for Mustang at Le Mans. It’s a great testament to our company, our employees and all our fans who are celebrating Mustang’s 60th anniversary this year and all the great partners we have with Proton Competition, M-Sport and Multimatic Motorsports. We’re racing and winning all around the world, but to have a podium here at Le Mans is such a special moment,” he added.

    Likewise, Proton Competition Team Principal Christian Ried also expressed his happiness with the results.

    “It’s always great to be on the podium and especially at Le Mans,” Ried commented.

    “But also, in the first year of a new car, and in the 60th Anniversary of Mustang, there are just so many things that came together to make today possible. It’s unbelievable. We saw that this was a good car at its debut in Daytona, and we’ve since taken all the steps in order to make this work in its first season. From Daytona, Sebring and Long Beach, to Qatar, Imola and Spa, we felt like we could bring a car here after those six months that could fight for the win. To finish on the podium in third is amazing. I’m proud of everyone,” he added.

    Racing: part of Mustang DNA

    Racing — the Blue Oval brand pointed out — is part of the Mustang DNA. According to the American carmaker, the pony car made its successful competitive debut during the 1964 Tour de France de Automobile, only five months after it was introduced to the world.

    Ever since, Ford’s global race car has competed in the National Association for Stock Car Auto Racing, the National Hot Rod Association, the International Motor Sports Association, the Australian Supercars, and Formula Drift.

    7th-generation Mustang

    “The Ford Mustang has raced in circuits across the world for decades, and now is the time for us to race our iconic coupe at the most important race in the world,” said Ford Motor Company Chief Executive Officer Jim Farley.

    “Ford has a rich history at Le Mans dating back to the first race in 1923 and we are excited to return to the global stage in what promises to be one of the most exciting races of the modern era,” he added.

    Ford Mustang GTD

    Off the track, the Mustang GTD – a road-going version of the Mustang GT3 – made its European debut and was a focal point at Maison de Mustang inside Manufacturer Village.

    Ford Mustang GTD

    Meanwhile, fans participated in a Paul Swift Precision Driving experience.

    “While Mustang GT3 is the pinnacle of our sports car racing around the world, it is only one part of a far broader strategy around Mustang racing that includes our recent Mustang Challenge Series as well as GT4 and much more besides,” Rushbrook commented.

    “We race to win and also to build our Ford Performance community, and our hope is that fans at Le Mans get as much excitement from the off-track experiences as they get from attending the race itself. This is an exciting time to be a fan of Mustang,” he added.

    Photos from Ford and Ruben Manahan IV

    Also read:

    Ford PH now carries Bronco badge

    Ford begins Explorer EV mass production

    All-new Ford Mustang GTD showcases race-ready suspension system

    Paulo Papa

    Paulo Papa

    Fueled by his passion for cars and a good dose of caffeine, Paulo loves taking his readers for an exciting spin with his writing. A self proclaimed nerd, epigrammatic writer, and a doting father. 

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