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The 2003 1000 km of Le Mans was a one-off sports car event run under the organization of the Automobile Club de l'Ouest (ACO) in preparation for the Le Mans Endurance Series that began in 2004. It was run on 9 November 2003 at the Bugatti Circuit near Le Mans, France.

Contents

DevelopmentEdit

The ACO, having previous helped in the creation of the American Le Mans Series with the running of the 1998 Petit Le Mans, as well as a failed attempt at a Japanese sportscar series with the 1999 Le Mans Fuji 1000km, created the 1000 km of Le Mans as an experimental event to gauge the desire for teams to participate in a European-based endurance sportscar series under Le Mans rules.

Previously, the FIA Sportscar and FIA GT Championships had run primarily in Europe, but were not running as a combined series, one concentrating on prototypes and the other grand tourers, and featured mostly sprint or middle-distance races. Don Panoz, creator of the American Le Mans Series, had attempted to create a European series to combine the two types of sportscars with the European Le Mans Series, but had failed to gain enough entrants. The ACO, weary of the same occurrence, decided to hold a single race to see how much participation there would actually be.

Although officially run under the Le Mans Endurance Series name, this did not count towards any championship. In order to help bolster the number of entrants, the ACO promised winners in each of the four race classes automatic invitations to the 2004 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Unlike the usual 24 Hours of Le Mans run in June at the 13 km Circuit de la Sarthe, the 1000 km of Le Mans ran on the 4.3 km Bugatti Circuit which did not use closed public roads.

Official resultsEdit

Class winners in bold. Cars failing to complete 75% of winner's distance marked as Not Classified (NC).

Pos Class No Team Drivers Chassis Tyre Laps
Engine
1 LMP900 5   Audi Sport Japan Team Goh   Tom Kristensen
  Seiji Ara
Audi R8 M 208
Audi 3.6L Turbo V8
2 LMP900 2   Pescarolo Sport   Stéphane Sarrazin
  Franck Lagorce
  Sébastien Bourdais
Courage C60 Evo M 205
Peugeot A32 3.2L Turbo V6
3 LMP900 8   Racing for Holland   Jan Lammers
  Andy Wallace
Dome S101 D 204
Judd GV4 4.0L V10
4 LMP675 13   Courage Compétition   Wim Eyckmans
  Roman Rusinov
  Enrico Muscioni
Courage C65 M 197
JPX 3.4L V6
5 GTS 88   Care Racing   Jamie Davies
  Darren Turner
Ferrari 550-GTS Maranello M 195
Ferrari F133 5.9L V12
6 GTS 80   Care Racing   Peter Kox
  Tim Sugden
Ferrari 550-GTS Maranello M 194
Ferrari F133 5.9L V12
7 LMP675 18   Intersport Racing   Jon Field
  Duncan Dayton
  Larry Connor
Lola B01/60 G 191
Judd KV675 3.4L V8
8 GTS 86   Larbre Compétition   Christophe Bouchut
  Vincent Vosse
  Sébastian Dumez
Chrysler Viper GTS-R M 190
Chrysler 356-T6 8.0L V10
9 LMP900 9   Taurus Racing   Phil Andrews
  Justin Keen
  Giovanni Lavaggi
Lola B2K/10 D 190
Judd GV4 4.0L V10
10 GT 47   Cirtek Motorsport   Philipp Peter
  Klaus Engelhorn
  Andrea Montermini
Ferrari 360 Modena GTC P 189
Ferrari F131 3.6L V8
11 GT 39   Freisinger Motorsport   Stéphane Ortelli
  Stéphane Daoudi
  Alexey Vasilyev
Porsche 996 GT3-RS D 189
Porsche 3.6L Flat-6
12 GT 38   PK Sport Ltd.   Robin Liddell
  Jean-Philippe Belloc
Porsche 996 GT3-RS P 188
Porsche 3.6L Flat-6
13 GT 36   Sebah QM Automotive   Xavier Pompidou
  Emmanuel Collard
Porsche 996 GT3-R D 186
Porsche 3.6L Flat-6
14 GT 33   Bernard Jubin   Sylvain Noël
  Christophe Tinseau
Porsche 996 GT3-RS P 186
Porsche 3.6L Flat-6
15 LMP675 24   Rachel Welter   Olivier Porta
  Richard Balandras
  Yojiro Terada
WR LMP01 M 185
Peugeot 2.0L Turbo I4
16 GT 30   Scuderia Ecosse   Tim Mullen
  Marino Franchitti
  Chris Niarchos
Ferrari 360 Modena GTC P 185
Ferrari F133 3.6L V8
17 GT 46   DeWALT-Racesports Salisbury   Michael Caine
  Richard Stanton
  Bob Berridge
TVR Tuscan T400R D 182
TVR Speed Six 4.0L I6
18 GT 49   Morgan Motor Company   Adam Sharpe
  Neil Cunningham
Morgan Aero 8R D 178
BMW (Mader) 4.5L V8
19 GT 45   DeWALT-Racesports Salisbury   Amanda Stretton
  Fanny Duchateau
  Liz Halliday
TVR Tuscan T400R D 175
TVR Speed Six 4.0L I6
20 LMP675 12   PiR   Pierre Bruneau
  Marc Rostan
Pilbeam MP84 D 173
Nissan (AER) VQL 3.0L V6
21 GT 40   Seikel Motorsport   Johnny Mowlem
  Alex Caffi
  Gabrio Rosa
Porsche 996 GT3-RS Y 173
Porsche 3.6L Flat-6
22 LMP900 7   Fred Goddard   Earl Goddard
  Martin Short
  Warren Carway
Reynard 01Q D 172
Ford (Nicholson-McLaren) 4.0L V8
23 GTS 66   Konrad Motorsport   Wolfgang Kaufmann
  Toni Seiler
  Franz Konrad
Saleen S7-R D 170
Ford 7.0L V8
24 GT 32   System Force Motorsport   Peter van Merksteijn Sr.
  Frans Munsterhuis
Porsche 996 GT3-RS P 169
Porsche 3.6L Flat-6
25 GT 42   Spyker Automobilien   Patrick van Schoote
  Norman Simon
Spyker C8 Double-12R D 169
Audi 4.0L V8
26 GT 41   T2M Motorsport   Georges Forgeois
  Paul Daniels
  Wim Coekelberghs
Porsche 996 GT3-RS M 165
Porsche 3.6L Flat-6
27 LMP675 25   Gerard Welter   Jean-René de Fournoux
  Bastien Brière
  William David
WR LMP02 M 163
Peugeot 3.4L V6
28 GT 34   Noël del Bello   Jean-Luc Maury-Laribière
  Patrick Caternet
  Philip Collin
Porsche 996 GT3-RS M 161
Porsche 3.6L Flat-6
29 LMP900 4   Lister Racing   Jamie Campbell-Walter
  Nathan Kinch
  Tom Coronel
Lister Storm LMP D 144
Chevrolet LS1 6.0L V8
30
NC
GT 48   Olivier Baron   Bruno Houzelot
  Denis Cohignac
  André-Alain Corbel
Porsche 996 GT3-R P 125
Porsche 3.6L Flat-6
31
DNF
LMP675 15   Didier Bonnet Racing   Renaud Denoit
  Roland Bossy
Debora LMP200 M 141
BMW (Mader) 3.4L I6
32
DNF
LMGTP 10   JML Team Panoz   Olivier Beretta
  David Saelens
Panoz Esperante GTR-1 M 126
Ford (Élan) 6L8 6.0L V8
33
DNF
GT 35   XL Racing   Gilles Vannelet
  Bernard Rousselot
  Gaël Lesoudier
Ferrari 550 Maranello P 84
Ferrari F133 5.5L V12
34
DNF
LMP675 14   RML   Thomas Erdos
  Mike Newton
  Chris Goodwin
MG-Lola EX257 D 65
MG (AER) XP20 2.0L Turbo I4
35
DNF
LMP900 6   Intersport Racing   Clint Field
  Rick Sutherland
  John Graham
Riley & Scott Mk III C D 23
Ford (Roush) 6.0L V8
DNS GT 31   RJ Cole
  Xero Competition
  Ricky Cole
  Peter Le Bas
  Paula Cook
Chevrolet Corvette LM-GT D -
Chevrolet LS1 5.7L V8
DNS LMP900 3   Team Nasamax   Robbie Sterling
  Werner Lupberger
  Romain Dumas
Reynard 01Q D -
Cosworth XD 2.7L Turbo V8
(Bio-Ethanol)

StatisticsEdit

  • Pole Position - #5 Audi Sport Japan Team Goh - 1:27.775
  • Distance - 869.44 km
  • Average Speed - 144.952 km/h

Post-RaceEdit

Following a successful turn out from a large number of European teams, as well as a handful of American and Japanese teams, the event was considered a success. With this, the ACO pushed forward with their development of the Le Mans Endurance Series, debuting in 2004. This move would also lead to the demise of the FIA Sportscar Championship, as prototype teams chose instead to participate in LMES.

Since this event, the LMES has not returned to Le Mans as part of their regular schedule, although many LMES participants race in the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

External linksEdit