Formula One driver Nico Hulkenberg may not have had a podium finish for Force India but he was victorious yesterday when he became the first active Formula One driver to win the world’s most famous endurance race-24 Hours of Le Mans, since Johnny Herbert and Bertrand Gachot for Mazda in 1991.
Hulkenberg is also the first rookie to take overall honours in the race as Porsche’s last win was in 1998, courtesy of Scot Allan McNish, Stephane Ortelli and Laurent Aiello.
The German signed up with Porsche LMP1 team during the beginning of the year and took the No.19 Porsche 919 Hybrid past the chequered flag after 395 laps of the Circuit de la Sarthe with partners Earl Bamber and Nick Tandy. The trio earned Porsche’s 17th win in the race.
Porsche ended up taking home a one-two victory when Mark Webber and his partners, Brendon Hartley and Timo Bernhard, finished second with the no.17 Porsche 919 Hybrid whereas last year’s winners, Audi came in third place with their Audi R18 e-tron quattro.
On the talks of the victory, Hulkenberg said “I’m speechless right now, to be honest.”
“It’s difficult to find the right words, it’s probably the best day of my career, maybe even my life.”
“It’s been a fantastic week, I won with two great drivers, who are good guys. I’m happy to have written a chapter into the history books of Le Mans, I hope to return next year,” added the 27-year-old.
Photo credits: Reuters