Are you looking for a guide on how to legally watch the Le Mans 24 hours in New Zealand? If so, you’ve come to the right place. Today we’ll show you how to watch this iconic race within minutes.
What is Le Mans 24 Hours?
The 24 Hours of Le Mans is an annual sports car race held near the town of Le Mans, France.
It is an endurance race and is the oldest in the world for races of its type that remain active today, the first race taking place in 1923.
One third of the Triple Crown of Motorsport (alongside the Monaco Grand Prix and Indianapolis 500), the event is one of the most reputable and prestigious in the world.
As the name suggests, it is a 24-hour race that tests the mental and physical endurance of the drivers, as well as the mechanical abilities of the cars being driven and efficient use of consumables by the participating teams (fuel, tyres, braking materials, etc.)
Le Mans 24 Hours Event
The race is held in June of each year, beginning in mid afternoon and ending at the same time the following day.
The distances covered by drivers equates to ~5,000 km, with the 2010 claiming the longest record at 5410km.
Each vehicle must have three drivers sharing it, as drivers typically go for upwards of two hours without breaks.
The event is split into categories, or ‘classes’, distinguished by the type of car being driven, however, all classes still compete to be the outright victor. As such, there are class victors and an overall victor, which is typically achieved by drivers of the highest class of car.
At present, there are four classes split between roughly 60 vehicles. These classes are the LMP1, LMP2, LMGTE Pro and LMGTE Am, which are differentiated by vehicle components such as the engine type, the weight of the cars and the size of the fuel tanks, amongst others.
The event takes place on the Circuit de la Sarthe, which after extensive modification throughout its history, is now 13.626km in length. The winner of the event is the car that ran the most laps on the track, or in the event of two cars on the same place, whoever covered the most distance from its starting point over the course of the event’s 24 hours.
The top speeds reached on the track are usually around 330 km/h, given the short lengths of the track’s straights, which are done primarily to protect spectators.
The event has had some catastrophes in the past in relation to spectator security, particularly the notorious 1955 Le Mans Disaster, where over 83 spectators were killed by debris following a massive crash by driver Pierre Levegh (who also perished in the accident), leading to much stricter regulations surrounding the race.
The most successful marque in the event’s history is Porsche, totaling 19 victories, 7 of which came consecutively between 1981 and 1987.
Danish driver Tom Kristensen is the most successful, with 9 wins, the last being in in 2013.
The winner of the 2019 event were Toyota Gazoo Racing of the LMP1 class, whose drivers Sebastian Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Fernando Alonso took home a comfortable victory after 385 laps, second only to another entrant vehicle by the Toyota marque 17km behind them.
Watch Le Mans 24 Hours NZ
The 2020 race will begin on Saturday 13th June and conclude Sunday 13th June exactly 24 hours later.
Currently the NZ rights are held by Sky Sports so a subscription is required to watch using their platform.
Globally the best platform for watching Le Mans live is Eurosport Player which costs $12.99 per month (billed in UK Pounds or AUD).
A premium VPN service such as PureVPN.com and their UK or AU servers can unlock Eurosport from anywhere in the world including New Zealand. You can then watch full coverage for the entire race.
We’ll show you how to use a VPN to get access within minutes. Our recommendation also gives you the best provider to use for secure browsing, fast streaming and superior support.
Follow our quick guide below and you’ll be watching in no time at all.
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