1980 24 Hours of Le Mans

The 1980 24 Hours of Le Mans was the 48th Grand Prix of Endurance, and took place on 14 and 15 June 1980. It was the seventh round of the 1980 World Championship for Makes.

1980 24 Hours of Le Mans
Previous: 1979 Next: 1981
Index: Races | Winners


Porsche again sent no works Group 6 cars, in order to not compete against their many customers in their 935 Group 5 cars. The lone Group 6 Porsche, a Martini Racing-sponsored roadster entered by Joest Racing for Reinhold Joest himself and Jacky Ickx, was christened the Porsche 908/80 by the team (and "FrankenPorsche" by journalists), but looked much like the 1977 version of the 936. For a long time the car was believed to be a hack on a 908 chassis until it was discovered that it was in fact built on a real 936 replacement chassis, the 936-004. As Porsche didn't wish to be in the business of selling 936s to customers, the secret was kept by using a 908 chassis number plate.

The 908/80 was favorite but Porsche could also count on many 935, five Group 5 plus eight IMSA GTX, including three cars from the Sebring-winning Dick Barbour team. Most of the opposition was in the GTP class: three WM-Peugeot and a trio of local heroes, the Le Mans-built Rondeau-Cosworth.


The race winning Rondeau M379

The start was the probably wettest ever at Le Mans. Ickx laid back in his roadster until he could actually see something else other than the fog created by closed-cabin cars: Porsche 935s, BMW M1s and Rondeau coupes.

John Fitzpatrick was leading with Dick Barbour's Porsche 935. Hans Stuck had shoved his BMW M1 from 26th to second by 17:00. At that time Jean Rondeau had two of his made-in-Le Mans cars in the top 10.

When the rain decreased Ickx and Joest picked off one car after another. By the end of the third hour, Joest found himself in the lead. When Ickx was back in the car he broke the fuel injection pump belt. But Joest had planned wisely; there was a set of basic tools and a spare belt in the car. Ickx restarted just 14 minutes later but this was enough to lose the lead.

At nightfall, a Rondeau was leading the race but Ickx began the chase. By 01:00 Sunday, the 908/80 was on the same lap as the leaders. Two hours later, they were ahead and began to leave the French coupé behind. After numerous lead changes caused by refuelings and scheduled maintenance on the cars around 07:00, the Joest Martini Porsche had built a solid lead.

But the Joest team had underestimated the Rondeaus, as they didn't expect the Cosworth to be very reliable. As a result, Joest and Ickx did not run fast enough and at 10:00 when the 908/80 had a gearbox failure, like the works 936s in 1977, they had not built up a large enough lead. The Rondeau of Jean Rondeau himself and Jean-Pierre Jaussaud gained the lead with a gap of three laps over the second placed car. Ickx had to begin a third chase.

When Jaussaud took over from Rondeau with an hour and a half remaining, the Rondeau had still a two laps advance but the Porsche was running faster. With 35 minutes left to race, the rain returned. Ickx pitted for wet tyres while Jaussaud kept the slicks. Jaussaud had made the right choice and remained in the lead. However, there was a final surprise: As the rain became heavier in the last lap, Jaussaud lost the control of his car. By luck he did not hit anything. For the first time a driver had won Le Mans on a car bearing his own name. At the end of the race Ickx announced his retirement, which he was to reverse a few months later.

Official resultsEdit

Le Mans in 1980
Pos Class No Team Drivers Chassis Tyres Laps
1 S
16   LePoint Jean Rondeau   Jean Rondeau
  Jean-Pierre Jaussaud
Rondeau M379 G 338
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 L V8
2 S
9   Equipe Liqui Moly - Martini Racing   Jacky Ickx
  Reinhold Joest
Porsche 908/80 D 336
Porsche 2.1 L Turbo Flat-6
3 GTP 17   Belga Jean Rondeau   Gordon Spice
  Philippe Martin
  Jean-Michel Martin
Rondeau M379 G 329
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 L V8
4 GTP 5   WM Esso   Guy Fréquelin
  Roger Dorchy
WM P79/80 M 316
Peugeot PRV 2.7 L Turbo V6
5 IMSA 70   Dick Barbour Racing   John Fitzpatrick
  Brian Redman
  Dick Barbour
Porsche 935 K3 G 316
Porsche Type-935 3.2 L Turbo Flat-6
6 GTP 4   Porsche System   Manfred Schurti
  Jürgen Barth
Porsche 924 Carrera GT D 316
Porsche 2.0 L Turbo I4
7 S
8   Alain de Cadenet   Alain de Cadenet
  François Migault
De Cadenet-Lola LM D 313
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 L V8
8 Gr.5 49   Vegla Racing Team   Harald Grohs
  Dieter Schornstein
Porsche 935 D 313
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
9 IMSA 73   JLP Racing   John Paul Sr.
  John Paul Jr.
  Guy Edwards
Porsche 935 JLP-2 G 312
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
10 IMSA 76   JMS Racing
  Charles Pozzi
  Jean Xhenceval
  Pierre Dieudonné
  Hervé Regout
Ferrari 512BB/LM M 312
Ferrari 4.9 L Flat-12
11 GTP 6   WM Esso   Jean-Daniel Raulet
  Marcel Mamers
WM P79/80 M 311
Peugeot PRV 2.7 L Turbo Flat-6
12 GTP 2   Porsche System   Andy Rouse
  Tony Dron
Porsche 924 Carrera GT D 310
Porsche 2.0 L Turbo I4
13 GTP 3   Porsche System   Derek Bell
  Al Holbert
Porsche 924 Carrera GT D 305
Porsche 2.0 L Turbo I4
14 IMSA 83   BMW France   Didier Pironi
  Dieter Quester
  Marcel Mignot
BMW M1 D 293
BMW M88 3.5 L I6
15 IMSA 84   BMW Motorsport GmbH
  Dominique Lacaud
  Hans-Joachim Stuck
  Dominique Lacaud
  Hans-Georg Bürger
BMW M1 D 283
BMW M88 3.5 L I6
16 GT 93   Thierry Perrier   Thierry Perrier
  Roger Carmillet
Porsche 911 SC K 280
Porsche 4.6 L Flat-6
17 S
25   ROC — Société Yacco   Bruno Sotty
  Daniel Laurent
  Philippe Hesnault
Chevron B36 G 276
ROC-Talbot 2.0 L I4
18 S
23   ROC — Société Yacco   Michel Dubois
  Christian Debias
  Florian Vetsch
Lola T298 G 272
ROC-Talbot 2.0 L I4
19 Gr.5 53   Jolly Club - Lancia Corse   Carlo Facetti
  Martino Finotto
Lancia Beta Monte Carlo P 272
Lancia 1.4 L Turbo I4
20 IMSA 89   Hervé Poulain   Dany Snobeck
  Hervé Poulain
  Pierre Destic
Porsche 935 D 272
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
21 IMSA 86   Z & W Enterprises Inc.   Ernesto Soto
  Mark Hutchins
  Pierre Honegger
Mazda RX-7 G 266
Mazda 12A 1.2L 2-Rotor
22 S
29   Dorset Racing Associates   Peter Clarke
  Nick Mason
  Martin Birrane
Lola T297 D 263
Ford Cosworth BDG 2.0 L I4
23 IMSA 78   EMKA Productions   Steve O'Rourke
  Richard Down
  Simon Phillips
Ferrari 512BB/LM D 262
Ferrari 4.9 L Flat-12
24 GT 90   Georges Bourdillat   Georges Bourdillat
  Alain-Michel Bernhard
  Pascal Ennequin
Porsche 934 M 248
Porsche 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
25 S
12   Dome Co. Ltd.   Chris Craft
  Bob Evans
Dome RL80 D 246
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 L V8
GTP 7   WM Esso   Serge Saulnier
  Jean-Louis Bousquet
  Denis Morin
WM P79/80 M 264
Peugeot PRV 2.7 L Turbo V6
27   Michel Elkoubi / Primagaz   Patrick Perrier
  Pierre Yver
Lola T298 M 255
BMW M12 2.0 L I4
GT 94   Equipe Alméras Frères   Jacques Alméras
  Jean-Marie Alméras
  Marianne Hoepfner
Porsche 934 M 251
Porsche 3.3 L Turbo Flat-6
IMSA 69   Racing Associates Inc.   Bob Akin
  Ralph Kent-Cooke
  Paul Miller
Porsche 935 K3 G 237
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
IMSA 95   BMW Zol-Auto   François Sérvanin
  Laurent Ferrier
  Pierre-François Rousselot
BMW M1 G 237
BMW M88 3.5 L I6
Gr.5 43   Malardeau Kremer Racing   Xavier Lapeyre
  Jean-Louis Trintignant
  Anne-Charlotte Verney
Porsche 935 K3 D 217
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
Gr.5 45   Gelo Racing Team   Bob Wollek
  Helmut Kelleners
Porsche 935 P 191
Porsche Type-935 3.2 L Turbo Flat-6
Gr.5 42   Gozzy Kremer Racing   Tetsu Ikuzawa
  Rolf Stommelen
  Axel Plankenhorn
Porsche 935 K3 D 167
Porsche Type-935 3.0L Turbo Flat-6
GT 80   Diego Febles Racing   Armando Gonzales
  Diego Febles
  Francisco Romero
Porsche 934 G 164
Porsche 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
Gr.5 44   Charles Ivey Racing   Peter Lovett
  Dudley Wood
  John Cooper
Porsche 935 K3 D 158
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
28   Scuderia Torino Corse   Lella Lombardi
  Mark Thatcher
Osella PA8 P 157
BMW M12 2.0 L I4
IMSA 85   Sun System
  Whittington Brothers Racing
  Hurley Haywood
  Don Whittington
  Dale Whittington
Porsche 935 K3 G 151
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
GT 91   ASA Cachia   Christian Bussi
  Bernard Salam
  Cyril Grandet
Porsche 934 D 137
Porsche 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
IMSA 71   Dick Barbour Racing   Bobby Rahal
  Bob Garretson
  Allan Moffat
Porsche 935 K3 G 134
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
IMSA 77   JMS Racing
  Charles Pozzi
  Jean-Claude Andruet
  Claude Ballot-Léna
Ferrari 512BB/LM M 129
Ferrari 4.9 L Flat-12
1   André Chevalley Racing   Patrick Gaillard
  François Trisconi
  André Chevalley
ACR 80 (Lola T380) G 126
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 L V8
GTX 96   Garage du Bac   Frédéric Alliot
  Jacques Guérin
BMW M1 D 125
BMW M88 3.5 L I6
15   ITT Jean Rondeau   Henri Pescarolo
  Jean Ragnotti
Rondeau M379 G 124
Ford Cosworth DFV 3.0 L V8
Gr.5 41   Porsche Kremer Racing   Ted Field
  Danny Ongais
  Jean-Louis Lafosse
Porsche 935 K3 D 89
Porsche 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
22   Hubert Striebig   Michel Pignard
  Mario Ketterer
  Hubert Striebig
Toj SM01 D 79
BMW 2.0 L I4
IMSA 75   JMS Racing
  Charles Pozzi
  Lucien Guitteny
  Gérard Bleynie
Ferrari 512BB/LM M 47
Ferrari 4.9 L Flat-12
IMSA 82   March Racing Ltd.   Manfred Winkelhock
  Patrick Nève
  Michael Korton
BMW M1 D 38
BMW M88 3.5 L I6
Gr.5 46   Meccarillos Racing   Claude Haldi
  Bernard Béguin
  Volkert Merl
Porsche 935 D 37
Porsche Type-935 2.9 L Turbo Flat-6
24   ROC — Sociéte Yacco   Marc Sourd
  Bernard Verdier
Lola T298 G 27
ROC-Talbot 2.0 L I4
Gr.5 52   Scuderia Lancia Corse   Piercarlo Ghinzani
  Markku Alén
  Gianfranco Brancatelli
Lancia Beta Monte Carlo P 26
Lancia 1.4 L Turbo I4
IMSA 79   Scuderia Supercar Bellancauto   Spartaco Dini
  Fabrizio Violati
  Maurizio Micangeli
Ferrari 512BB/LM M 10
Ferrari 4.9 L Flat-12
IMSA 68   Racing Associates Inc.   Skeeter McKitterick
  Charles Mendez
  Leon Walger
Porsche 935 K3 G 9
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
IMSA 72   Wynn's International
  Dick Barbour Racing
  Robert Kirby
  Mike Sherwin
  Bob Harmon
Porsche 935 K3 G 7
Porsche Type-935 3.0 L Turbo Flat-6
20   Jean-Philippe Grand   Jean-Philippe Grand
  Yves Courage
Chevron B36 G 6
BMW M12 2.0 L I4
Gr.5 51   Scuderia Lancia Corse   Hans Heyer
  Bernard Darniche
  Teo Fabi
Lancia Beta Monte Carlo P 6
Lancia 1.4 L Turbo I4


  • Pole Position - #70 Dick Barbour Racing - 3:40.02
  • Fastest Lap - #9 Equipe Liqui Moly — Martini Racing (Jacky Ickx) - 3:40.60
  • Distance - 4608.02 km
  • Average Speed - 191.899 km/h

Trophy WinnersEdit

  • Index of Thermal Efficiency - #16 LePoint Jean Rondeau


  1. ^ Örnerdal, Stefan, ed. (1 March 2008). "XLVIII Grand Prix d'Endurance les 24 Heures du Mans 1980". Le Mans Register. Archived from the original on 17 January 2012. Retrieved 17 January 2012.