- Not canceled, just pushed back. A bit.

H​ere's why you need to watch the 24 Hour of Le Mans

I​f you've never watched, this year is your year!

5w ago

12.4K

T​he 24 Hours of Le Mans is nothing shy of the word amazing. Ever since the first race in 1923, it has been the ultimate test of the cars, the manufactures, the teams, and of course, the drivers. The course itself incorporates a perfect balance between speed and handling. It tires you out, it tires the brakes out, the engine out, and just about anything used to make that car travel as fast as it can go for 24 hours straight.

A​nyway, here are a few reasons as to why you don't just want to, but need to watch the greatest race in history.

I​t's pretty important...

As much as I would like to spend hours and hours displaying my complete nerdiness towards this event, it's a lot more relevant to talk about it's importance. And just about every head of every team or manufacture would tell you just how much it means to win this race. Carroll Shelby, you know, that guy that helped fabricate this little 40 inch-tall car we know as the Ford GT40, reflects "My proudest moments are beating Ferrari for the World Championship in 1965, and working with Ford to win Le Mans in 1966 and 1967." And he's had a lot to be proud of.

T​he GT40s finishing 1-2-3, admittedly a few laps apart from each other...

T​he GT40s finishing 1-2-3, admittedly a few laps apart from each other...

I​t's important to note as well that when Porsche designed the 917 to race at Le Mans, they were facing near bankruptcy. Without their win in 1970 with the 917 KH, who knows if we would have ever actually been able to see what they were really capable of. And of course, since they are the winningest (if that's a word) manufacture ever to compete with a total 19 overall wins, it would have been a shame to see them break down so early with so much potential.

D​on't know where the dominance started, well, here it is!

D​on't know where the dominance started, well, here it is!

W​ith all of this in mind, it is important to note that the bragging right that come with just one win at this infamous racetrack are bigger than those you get when you land a night with the hottest person in school. Well, maybe not quite as good in the real world, but in our world, the car world, you are quite simply a driving god.

O​verall, even if you don't even make a podium or worse, can't finish the race, Le Mans serves, more often than not, as a learning experience in order to make things better. A driver makes a mistake; they know not to do it again. A car breaks down; the company knows what went wrong for the next race. Finish tenth in class, the team reflects how their strategy worked, and how they can fix it for next year. Unlike in Middle School, when you couldn't stand learning, here, your whole race depends on it. And of course, so does your image.

H​ey, it happens. And you know what, it never happened again.

H​ey, it happens. And you know what, it never happened again.

B​ut enough about importance and amazingness and all these -ances and -ness's, because those are only a couple reasons why you should watch. And the aren't even the most important or amazing...

Y​ou can get out of doing yard work...

Y​es, probably one of the best reasons to watch this race is that you have an excuse not to do anything around the house. You were supposed to install a sink faucet, but of course, there's always next weekend. In all seriousness though, don't let your parents or your siblings or your spouses get in the way of missing even just one minute, as that one minute could be the most exciting minute of the race.

I​t's more fun than a Disney-themed carousel...

S​imilar to what I said above, you won't want to miss a minute of this race. It sucks you in faster than an elephant trunk and instantly glues your eyes to your television. Because let's not forget, yes it's not NASCAR, but it's sports car racing, and there is very little that's more entertaining to an avid race fan.

Y​ou have your fair-share of crashes here and there littered throughout the day, and your god-like executions of skill as well. In addition to this, it is also very entertaining to watch the strategy at play, as the race is over when it's over. Every car and team that get's to victory lane or wins even just in their class is a clear designation that their strategy worked. And of course, it's always fun to look at the oddballs that play a completely different strategy, whether it works for them or not.

T​he reigning champion, the Toyota TS050 would never see it's two consecutive wins had it not been for the strategy they used...

T​he reigning champion, the Toyota TS050 would never see it's two consecutive wins had it not been for the strategy they used...

Probably the most entertaining element to the race however is the element that things go wrong all the time. Whether it be a crash on lap three or a spin in hour 9 or fog in hour 15 or one car breaking down on one lap, then it's sister car breaking down in a matter of minutes with the same failure, it is typically when things go wrong when things get exciting.

P​ersonally, I love watching the end of the race. Not because the leading car is 4 laps ahead of P2 or because you get to see who was victorious in all the chaos that was the 24 Heures du Le Mans, but it's the feeling that you, like the drivers, teams, and cars, made it through. It is common to end up just as exhausted as Jan Lammers or Phil Hill, only you were on a couch and they were either in a sardine can or on the floor behind the pit box.

Y​es, drivers have just about fallen asleep behind the wheel once or twice. Part of the entertainment...

Y​es, drivers have just about fallen asleep behind the wheel once or twice. Part of the entertainment...

Y​ou will always learn something, even if you don't use it everyday...

F​or your personal sake, watching Le Mans is a good thing. If someone asks years from now in a pub quiz who won the 2020 Le Mans 24, you can answer confidently and feel good about yourself for doing so. You can impress those who don't know, and surprise those who did.

L​ikewise, you will learn as you listen along about the current state of the series and championship, and give yourself someone to shout for in the virtual stands. You should easily be able to catch up as; after all, the announcers have to talk for 24 hours as well.

I​f you are looking for history however, you won't find it as easily as just looking it up. Even still, you will hear references being made all throughout the race, and may surprise yourself with what you already know. Unless of course, you know everything already.

L​astly, you will learn about the drivers. Most of the drivers will be regulars in the series, but nevertheless, you will still see some pretty unique names pop up here and there. Whether it comes in the form of a Formula 1 driver or any driver from any other series, you will be able to learn more about them and, who knows, maybe see them win.

A​nd finally, the end!

A​t the end of the day, there are many reasons as to why you need to watch this race this upcoming weekend. If you ever get bored, which you probably won't, just know that when you come out in 24 hours from your little motorsport hole, you watched history being made. And best of all, you had fun doing it.

W​ho are you rooting for in the 88th anual 24 Hours of Le Mans?

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Comments (40)

  • I am also watching the Porsche Carrera Cup that is happening right before Le Mans. Porsche Carrera Cup Deutschland is live streaming the event for free: www.facebook.com/watch/live/?v=3294199874009339&ref=notif&notif_id=1600498460118474&notif_t=live_video

      1 month ago
  • Loved the article, thank you for writing it. This 2020 will be my first Le Mans I hope to watch. What is the best way to watch Le Mans if you are in the United States? What about those without a cable TV subscription? I don't mind paying. Currently, I subscribe to Motor Trend on Demand with their promotional $24 for a year subscription, and they are supposedly live streaming Le Mans. Are there alternatives?

      1 month ago
    • Thanks! As far as I know, it looks like Motor Trend has the full 24 Hours from 7:30 this morning to tomorrow around 8:00. Therefore, if you already have the subscription, you should be all set. As for alternatives, I would check out the WEC...

      Read more
        1 month ago
  • May I suggest a #teamnosleep for this year's Le Mans? Hahaha

      1 month ago
    • Haha yes, I’ll be up until they red flag it for fog!

        1 month ago
  • "T​he reigning champion, the Toyota TS050 would never see it's two consecutive wins had it not been for the strategy they used..." You need to pull into the pits and have that apostrophe removed. The "it's" have hit the fan!

      1 month ago
    • Never have I been so happy to correct a grammar mistake! Make that three consecutive wins now

        1 month ago
  • I always check in every few hours during the race to keep up, but this year, it’s Toyota vs...themselves, again and no Corvettes.

      1 month ago
    • Corvettes are an unfortunate loss, as they were supposed to be there. As for Toyota, the competition looked promising, but are kinda idle atm. Who knows, it ain’t over till it’s over

        1 month ago
    • Nothing like 24 hours of Toyota parade laps.

        1 month ago

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