On 22nd & 23rd of August, 1966 riders set off on the Le Mans circuit for the Shimano 24 Hours Cycling 7th edition.
Succeeding Sylvain Chavanel, the “Le Mans Style” start has been given by the former skier and car driver Luc Alphand, who finished 94th of the general ranking with 857km (532,5 miles) for the friendly Team Lucho (team of 8 riders). As the guest of honour, Luc Alphand concluded the event in the best way, saying that he will return.
“A successful edition, but tormented. I congratulate all the contestants, because the elements were unchained: we have known the heat wave at the beginning, the smoke of a forest fire just nearby, the storm around 4 a.m. and the rain just after,” said Romain Gasnal for the organization at the end of this marathon race.
It was an epic race that we will remember and confirm that the Le Mans race track is not more slippery under water than our roads. The Sunday’s humidity even relieved the bodies maltreated by the temperature of the day before.
The suspense has held the visitors spellbound from the beginning to the end. At the head of the general ranking, teams such as Payname, S1NEO Team Connect, Les 4 Roues Motrices or Planète Vélo Avranches assured the show since the first’s hours.
The former professional, Kilian Patour of S1NEO Team Connect, finally made the difference during the night in the tough conditions he likes. Victorious in 2014, the Payname team of Max Massat constantly chased to finish 1’48’’ after the winner.
Even so, the Sablé Sarthe Cyslime team remains the distance record holder, which was obtained last year, with more than 1004 km (623,8 miles). The fate of the 3rd, 4th and 5th was only settled during the final sprint and it is finally Planète Vélo Avranches who completes the podium. Sébastien Bertholet, winner in Man Solo in 2009 and 2014, repeated the feat as a soloist with 832 km (517 miles) in 199 laps, and a 124th place in the general ranking.
In the women category, the Ukrainian Olena Novikova imposed herself with 669 km (415,7 miles) in 160 laps. She ended 322nd of the general ranking. The first 100% female team, Cofely Endel Gazelles, finished at the 126th place of the general ranking with 828 km (514,5 miles) in 198 laps. By the way, this team made the women best lap in 5’52’’.
2016 Le Mans Shimano 24 Hours Cycling will take place the 20th and 21st of August and the registrations will open in December.
2015 Le Mans Shimano 24 Hours Cycling:
- 24 Hours Cycling: General ranking on www.24heuresvelo.fr
- 1966 riders registered (441 teams)
- Teams by categories: 70 Solos (7 Women), 42 Duos (11 Mixes), 119 teams of 4 riders, 169 of 6 (21 Mixes and 5 Women) et 40 teams of 8 (2 Women and 11 Mixes), that to say 134 women.
- 39 foreign teams (176 riders) : Germany, Belgium, Denmark, Great-Britain, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Netherlands, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine and Venezuela
- Bugatti circuit: 4185 meters – Uphill: 600 meters from 3.5 % to 7 % – Downhill: 1000 meters at 2 %
- Grand Prix Bugatti: Ranking on www.24heuresvelo.fr – Duration: 2 hours (9H45 to 11H45)
- French Cycling Journalist Championship: Ranking on www.24heuresvelo.fr
For more info, visit the website here.