6th at Le Mans

June 14, 2011

American Patrick Long endured a trying weekend at Le Circuit de la Sarthe, for his 8th attempt at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, finishing 6th in the GTE Pro class in the #80 Flying Lizard Porsche 911 GT3 RSR. Flying Lizard Motorsport made quite an impression on the rabid fans of Le Mans by unveiling a Troy Lee-designed livery for the endurance classic, a paint scheme which paid tribute to the 28 past overall winners of Le Mans. Long, teamed with Jörg Bergmeister and Lucas Luhr, qualified in 12th position in GTE Pro, and struggled to maximize the setup of the car prior to final practice for the race. The trio were in a favorable position past the halfway point, Sunday morning, when they lost two laps to replace an injector wire. As problems befell several of their primary competition, the #80 car looked set for a podium finish, but he and his teammates were left playing catch-up after losing time in the pits.

Long said, “It was a tough beginning to the week as we struggled to come to grips with the setup on the car, but we were pretty confident heading into the race. We were down a bit on lap time to the Corvettes and BMWs, but two lengthy caution periods helped us stay in touch with them. It was a huge relief to see both Alan McNish and Mike Rockenfeller come away major injury-free from their crashes – we’re a tight-knit fraternity and while we all want to win, the last thing anyone wants is to see someone injured. As has become their standard, the Lizard boys did a great job preparing and executing at Le Mans, and I’m grateful to them for putting in so much work. I get to go home and have a few days off before coming back to Europe to race at the Nürburgring, so I’ll be happy to rest.”

Patrick next races at the 24 Hours of Nürburgring, June 25-26. He will be driving the innovative Porsche 911 GT3 R Hybrid 2.0, with which he has claimed both the Hybrid’s first competition victory (ILMC 1000kms of Zhuhai, China, 2010) and its first overall victory (VLN Endurance Championship, 2011.)