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How Much Do The Drivers Know About The Le Mans 24 Hours?

Some very amusing answers!

After nearly two decades of covering the two days of Le Mans Scrutineering in the centre of the city, we’ve finally snapped. By our latest count, we have 325 interviews over the two decades that the feature a driver telling us he intends to “run his own race”. 271 have “something to bring for the rest”. 1400 have helpfully pointed out that “this is a very long race” and the remaining 412 have a “a lot to get through on the job list before the start”.

So this year, we’re doing something different, offering a range of paddock personalities an opportunity to exercise the grey stuff, show us what they know about this great race, and each other.

Here’s the first of those challenges, a Le Mans general knowledge quiz. As always, there will be winners, losers and intellectual failures.

On your marks, get set, mumble:

1. What year the first Le Mans 24 Hours? (Answer: 1923)

Oliver Webb: “No idea!”

Alex Brundle: “1921?”

Pipo Derani: “1923”

Ben Barker: “1936”

Graeme Lowdon: “1924?”

Matt Rao: “1903”

Gustavo Menezes: “1906… No wait, 1912?”

Oliver Bryant: “1912.”

Rob Bell: “1930”

Francois Perrodo: “1923”

Harry Tincknell: “1921”

Andy Priaulx: “1912”

Matt McMurry: “1918”

Mark Patterson: “1926”

Matt Griffin: “1918”

James Allen: “1912”

Pat Long: “1925”

“Oooo… It was a long time ago… 1865. That can’t be right… 1866.”

Phil Hanson
Tockwith Motorsports

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “Oooo… It was a long time ago… 1865. That can’t be right… 1866.”

Earl Bamber: “1924”

Nick Tandy: “1929”

Darren Turner: “1923”

Christian Reid: “First one would have been 1927.”

2. Which driver has won the most Le Mans 24 Hours overall, and how many? (Answer: Tom Kristensen, nine)

Oliver Webb: “Tom Kristensen, nine?”

Alex Brundle: “Tom Kristensen, 10?”

Pipo Derani: “TK, nine.”

Ben Barker: “TK, nine”

Graeme Lowdon: “TK, nine?”

Matt Rao: “Kristensen, nine”

Gustavo Menezes: “TK, nine.”

Oliver Bryant: “TK with 12?”

Rob Bell: “TK, nine.”

Francois Perrodo: “TK, nine”

Harry Tincknell: “Tom Kristensen, nine”

“Jacky Ickx… No hang on, Henri Pescarolo, 10!”

Andy Priaulx
Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK

Andy Priaulx: “Jacky Ickx… No hang on, Henri Pescarolo, 10!”

Matt McMurry: “TK, nine wins”

Mark Patterson: “Tom Kristensen, with 12 wins”

Matt Griffin: “Tom, with nine”

James Allen: “Tom Kristensen with nine.”

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “Tom Kristensen with nine.”

Earl Bamber: “TK, nine.”

Nick Tandy: “TK with nine.”

Darren Turner: “TK with nine”

Christian Reid: “Tom Kristensen, eight.”

Pat Long: “TK, I think he won seven”

3.Which manufacturer has won the most Le Mans 24 Hours overall, and how many? (Answer: Porsche, 18)

Oliver Webb: “Audi, it has to be Audi?”

Alex Brundle: “Audi? Must be? No wait, Bentley, way back in the day with something like 25 wins?”

Pipo Derani: “Porsche… 17? No, 18!”

Ben Barker: “Porsche, and 17?”

Graeme Lowdon: “Got to be Porsche, not sure how many…”

Matt Rao: “Porsche, with 18”

“Audi? Must be? No wait, Bentley, way back in the day with something like 25 wins?”

Alex Brundle
Jackie Chan DC Racing

Gustavo Menezes: “Porsche with 18”

Oliver Bryant: “Audi, it has to be Audi. 14 wins?”

Rob Bell: “Audi, no idea how many… 20?”

Francois Perrodo: “Porsche, at 16”

Harry Tincknell: “Porsche, but with 23”

Andy Priaulx: “I would say Audi. 13 wins.”

Matt McMurry: “Porsche, 16 wins.”

Mark Patterson: “Porsche, 16 wins.”

Matt Griffin: “Porsche, 18.”

James Allen: “Audi, and 11 wins”

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “Porsche with 19 wins.”

Earl Bamber: “Porsche, 18.”

Nick Tandy: “Porsche with 18”

Darren Turner: “Porsche with 17.”

Christian Reid: “Porsche with 18.”

Pat Long: “Porsche, 18.”

4. How long is the current circuit in kilometres? (Answer: 13.629km (8.69 miles))

Oliver Webb: “13.2km?”

Alex Brundle: “13.5km”

Pipo Derani: “16.6km”

Ben Barker: “9.5km”

Graeme Lowdon: “13… Let me look at my watch, because I’ve run it! 13.467”

Matt Rao: “13.67”

Gustavo Menezes: “13.6km”

Oliver Bryant: “13.169km”

Rob Bell: “13km”

Francois Perrodo: “13.6km”

Harry Tincknell: “14.1km”

Andy Priaulx: “14km”

Matt McMurry: “8.3 miles” (It’s 8.46 miles)

Mark Patterson: “13.56km” (It probably was when Mark first raced here”

Matt Griffin: “13.8km”

James Allen: “13.8km”

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “13.5km”

“8.3km… Yeah, 8.3km”

Nick Tandy
Porsche LMP Team

Earl Bamber: “13.6km”

Nick Tandy: “8.3km… Yeah, 8.3km”

Darren Turner: “12.4km”

Christian Reid: “13.5km”

Pat Long: “8.43 miles”

5. Who is the youngest driver ever to compete in the Le Mans 24 Hours, and at what age? (Answer Matt McMurry, 16)

Oliver Webb: “Not sure”

Alex Brundle: “Matt McMurry, 16”

Pipo Derani: “Matt McMurry, 16”

Ben Barker: “No idea, someone young!”

Graeme Lowdon: “Jan Magnussen? He was young when he first came wasn’t he?”

Matt Rao: “Matt McMurry, 16”

Gustavo Menezes: “Don’t know with this one.”

Oliver Bryant: “Nigel Moore? But someone has probably bettered him since…”

Rob Bell: “I know this, I remember it… Ah, don’t know…”

Francois Perrodo: “Matt McMurry, 16”

Harry Tincknell: “Matt McMurry, 16-years-old”

Andy Priaulx: “I don’t know, probably a 17-year-old?”

Matt McMurry: “Me isn’t it? 16-years-old, 202 days!”

“Me isn’t it? 16-years-old, 202 days!”

Matt McMurry
Algarve Pro Racing

Mark Patterson: “Matt McMurry, 16.”

Matt Griffin: “Matt McMurry, 16.”

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “Matt McMurry, 16.”

Earl Bamber: “McMurry.”

Nick Tandy: “McMurry, 16.”

Darren Turner: “Pass.”

Christian Reid: “Madison Snow? At 16.”

Pat Long: “Matt McMurry”

6. Who is the oldest driver ever to compete in the Le Mans 24 Hours, and at what age? (Answer: Jack Gerber, 68)

Oliver Webb: “Allan McNish? Not sure how old he is now…”

Alex Brundle: “No idea!”

Pipo Derani: “Any hints mate? Hmm… Mark Patterson, at 63.”

Ben Barker: “Tracy Krohn? 70… Oh… 69? Not sure?”

Graeme Lowdon: “Lammers, surely?”

Matt Rao: “There must have been someone about 70?”

Gustavo Menezes: “Some French dude?”

Oliver Bryant: “Not sure.”

Rob Bell: “How old is the guy who drives in green? Not sure…”

Francois Perrodo: “Mark Patterson or Howard Blank?”

“It’s Lammers. Isn’t he 61?”

Harry Tincknell
Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK

Harry Tincknell: “It’s Lammers. Isn’t he 61?”

Andy Priaulx: “No answer”

Matt McMurry: “Pass.”

Mark Patterson: “Don’t know who… 67?”

Matt Griffin: “Don’t have a name, but I reckon 61 years old.”

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “60 something…. It’s not Karun is it?”

Earl Bamber: “Don’t know.”

Nick Tandy: “Henri Pescarolo.”

Darren Turner: “Pass.”

Christian Reid: “Felbermayr Snr…”

Pat Long: “Yojiro Terada san.”

7. Which driver on the grid has taken part in the most consecutive Le Mans 24 Hours, and how many? (Answer: Emmanuelle Collard, 22, 23 this year)

Oliver Webb: “Darren Turner has done it a few years hasn’t he? Or Lotterer? Yeah, I’ll go Lotterer, with 15?”

Alex Brundle: “Not sure.”

Pipo Derani: “Marcel Fassler”

Ben Barker: “10 starts in a row from someone, not sure who.”

Graeme Lowdon: “Lammers…”

“Darren Turner has done it a few years hasn’t he? Or Lotterer? Yeah, I’ll go Lotterer, with 15?”

Oliver Webb
ByKolles Racing Team

Matt Rao: “Dumas has 17 doesn’t he? But someone has more, there’s a guy racing for TDS isn’t there? The record is like 37? Collard?”

Gustavo Menezes: “Pass.”

Oliver Bryant: “Collard, he’s done 22 hasn’t it, so this year will be his 23rd.”

Rob Bell: “Manu Collard, I know it’s him. He’s done something like 21?”

Francois Perrodo: “Not sure… Might be Manu Collard with 23!”

Harry Tincknell: “Roman Dumas with 26 straight?”

Matt McMurry: “Tracy Krohn I’ll say, with 16.”

Mark Patterson: “Tracy Krohn and 16 in a row”

Matt Griffin: “Collard with 21 starts.”

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “Andre Lotterer.”

Earl Bamber: “Could be Darren Turner?”

Nick Tandy: “Manu Collard, and I’d say 19 consecutive.”

Darren Turner: “Collard, 20 plus starts.”

Christian Reid: “Patrick Long.”

Pat Long: “Collard, over 20.”

8. How many drivers that have won the race overall are on the grid this year? (Eight)

Oliver Webb: “Six”

Alex Brundle: “Smaller number than you’d think? Four?”

Pipo Derani: “Seven”

Ben Barker: “Not sure?”

Graeme Lowdon: “Not sure with this one, my knowledge is not up to scratch!”

Matt Rao: “Seven”

“20”

Oliver Bryant
Beechdean AMR

Gustavo Menezes: “I’ll go with six”

Oliver Bryant: “20”

Rob Bell: “No idea!”

Francois Perrodo: “Eight”

Harry Tincknell: “Six”

Andy Priaulx: “Four”

Matt Griffin: “Eight.”

Earl Bamber: “11”

Nick Tandy: “Nine.”

Darren Turner: “13 I’d say.”

Christian Reid: “15”

Pat Long: “Nine.”

9. How many drivers of your nationality are on the grid this year? (Answer: varies. British: 31. Brazilians: nine Americans: 18. French: 32. Germans: eight. Australians: three. New Zealanders: four. Irish: one)

Oliver Webb: “11 Brits?

Alex Brundle: “28?

Pipo Derani: “Eight of us…. Let me think, there’s me, Tony Kanaan, that’s two Brazilians… So yeah, eight!”

“Eight of us…. Let me think, there’s me, Tony Kanaan, that’s two Brazilians… So yeah, eight!”

Pipo Derani
Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK

Ben Barker: “Brits… At least eight!”

Graeme Lowdon: “Hmmm… Don’t know.”

Matt Rao: “37?”

Gustavo Menezes: “Pass.”

Oliver Bryant: “Probably 20, there’s three in our team alone!”

Rob Bell: “Can’t count them… Can I? Who’s here? Jarvis is probably driving, Conway? I’m running out of fingers here… 25… no wait, 40!”

“Can’t count them… Can I? Who’s here? Jarvis is probably driving, Conway? I’m running out of fingers here… 25… no wait, 40!”

Rob Bell
TF Sport

Harry Tincknell: “I reckon 14?”

Francois Perrodo: “There’s probably 96 French drivers”

Andy Priaulx: “15”

Matt Griffin: “24 British drivers, and two Irish.”

James Allen: “I count five Australians”

Earl Bamber: “Four Kiwis.”

Nick Tandy: “Loads! 12.”

Darren Turner: “46 Brits.”

Christian Reid: “Seven German drivers”

Pat Long: “11 Americans.”

10. Who owns the LMP2 lap record on the current circuit layout, and what was the time? (Answer: Jos Verstappen, 3:32)

Oliver Webb: “Not sure of the time, but I reckon G-Drive last year, and Harry Tincknell?”

Alex Brundle: “In Qualifying it must be Rene Rast? 2:26? No wait…. Wait. 3:36.4”

Pipo Derani: “3:36, G-Drive”

Ben Barker: “Lapierre probably holds it, but I don’t look at P2… Was it a 3:34?”

Graeme Lowdon: “Roberto Merhi, in our car last year. If not you’re wrong!”

“Roberto Merhi, in our car last year. If not you’re wrong!”

Graeme Lowdon
Manor WEC

Matt Rao: “Wasn’t it Jos back in 2003? So it can’t be, must be Merhi last year?”

Gustavo Menezes: “Jos Verstappen in the RS Spyder, not sure the time.”

Oliver Bryant: “Hmmm. 3:32? Not sure who.”

Rob Bell: “I know that… I like quizzes me, shame I haven’t got a pint in my hand and crisps… I don’t know”

Francois Perrodo: “Porsche RS Spyder, Bleekemolen, with a 3:28?”

Andy Priaulx: “Jan Magnussen… Not sure how quick?”

Matt McMurry: “3:26? No idea who.”

Mark Patterson: “3:28, don’t know who.”

Matt Griffin: “Jos Verstappen in a Porsche, 3:32.”

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “3:32.1”

11. Which tyre supplier has won the most Le Mans 24 Hours overall? (Answer: Dunlop)

Oliver Webb: “Michelin?”

Alex Brundle: “Michelin?”

Pipo Derani: “Dunlop”

Ben Barker: “Michelin?”

Graeme Lowdon: “Michelin.”

Matt Rao: “Michelin.”

Gustavo Menezes: “Michelin.”

Oliver Bryant: “Pass.”

Rob Bell: “Michelin”

Francois Perrodo: “Michelin”

“I know it’s not Michelin… Goodyear?”

Harry Tincknell
Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK

Harry Tincknell: “I know it’s not Michelin… Goodyear?”

Andy Priaulx: “Michelin”

Matt McMurry: “Michelin”

Mark Patterson: “Michelin”

Matt Griffin: “Dunlop.”

James Allen: “Michelin”

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “Michelin”

Earl Bamber: “Michelin”

Nick Tandy: “Dunlop.”

Darren Turner: “Michelin”

Pat Long: “Michelin”

12. Who owns the ultimate lap record of the circuit in its current layout, and what was the time? (Answer: Neel Jani, 3:16)

Oliver Webb: “Not sure”

Alex Brundle: “Don’t know.”

Ben Barker: “Not sure.”

Graeme Lowdon: “Don’t know”

Matt Rao: “Neel Jani in 2015”

Gustavo Menezes: “Jani, 2015 with Porsche.”

Oliver Bryant: “Toyota last year? Not sure who’s the quickest, Nakajima? Or Kobayashi, he’s faster? Kobayashi?”

Rob Bell: “Jani, Porsche, 2015, 3:19”

Pipo Derani: “Jani, with a 3:16 in 2016”

Francois Perrodo: “Neel Jani, a 3:16.4”

Harry Tincknell: “Andre Lotterer with a 3:12?”

Andy Priaulx: “I reckon 3:35. Not sure who.”

Matt McMurry: “Ultimate lap record? 3:12.5? Not sure who.”

Mark Patterson: “I reckon it was a 3:10.”

“I reckon it was a 3:10.”

Mark Patterson
Algarve Pro Racing

Matt Griffin: “Jani, 3:16.”

James Allen: “Jani, 3:16.6”

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “A Porsche, 3:16.”

Earl Bamber: “I know it’s Porsche, I know it’s Neel. Was it a 3:14?”

Nick Tandy: “Neel Jani with a 3:16.”

Darren Turner: “Neel Jani, and a 3:16 lap.”

Pat Long: “3:21 by a Porsche.”

13. When was the last time Ferrari won the race overall? (Answer: 1965)

Oliver Webb: “Not sure”

Alex Brundle: “The 1960s… 1967 I’ll go with?”

Pipo Derani: “1965.”

Ben Barker: “Probably 1968?”

Graeme Lowdon: “1960… Ford won in 68… So 1969?”

Matt Rao: “Not sure…”

Gustavo Menezes: “Don’t know.”

Oliver Bryant: “Pass.”

Rob Bell: “No idea.”

Francois Perrodo: “1964”

Harry Tincknell: “Ferrari was 1965?”

Andy Priaulx: “1970?”

Matt McMurry: “Pass.”

Mark Patterson: “Not sure.”

Matt Griffin: “Last Ferrari win in 1972”

“Last Ferrari win in 1972”

Matt Griffin
Clearwater Racing

Phil Hanson & Nigel Moore: “Ferrari back in 1965”

Darren Turner: “1963.”

Pat Long: “1965.”

14: When was the last time a Ford-engined car won the race overall? (Answer: Ronedau, 1980)

Oliver Webb: “Not sure”

Alex Brundle: “Not sure”

Pipo Derani: “1969?”

Ben Barker: “Must have been some prototype, in like 1983?”

Graeme Lowdon: “Well it wasn’t in the Audi era… 1995 was McLaren… Mazda 91… 94 was BMW? I’ll guess 1994.”

“Well it wasn’t in the Audi era… 1995 was McLaren… Mazda 91… 94 was BMW? I’ll guess 1994.”

Graeme Lowdon
Manor WEC

Matt Rao: “1972”

Gustavo Menezes: “Gotta be in the 70s… I’ll say 1972.”

James Allen: “I’d say, 1967.”

Nick Tandy: “1965.”

Oliver Bryant: “Later than the Ford GT era, some DFL Lola? Some sort of Lola? Actually, I’ll guess Courage…”

Rob Bell: “Not sure.”

Francois Perrodo: “I don’t know.”

Harry Tincknell: “1969”

Andy Priaulx: “1969”

Matt McMurry: “Pass.”

Mark Patterson: “Not sure.”

Matt Griffin: “Not sure, don’t have an answer.”

Darren Turner: “1969”

Winner: Matt Griffin, with 13 points!

Second: Francois Perrodo, 12 points
Third: Pipo Derani, 11 Points

Bottom three:

Andy Priaulx, 0 points
Oliver Webb, 2 points
Graeme Lowdon, 3 points