Ok, I am now happy that the results are correct, and consider them final. However they will remain provisional for the next few days, just incase something has been missed or misprinted. Event Report - 2014 GTPlanet 24 Heures du Mans First of all Thank You to everyone who took part, and to those behind the scenes, you all helped make this event a success; @aboe @andp132 @HEMIata @FastDuck @jammyozzy @jonnyb1990 @memto89 @Jakedog23 @joetruckv8 @full89metal @cmbeal317 @GGGMotorsport @dangerzone641 @soundtiger95 @BionicDerp @Masterhec @micantony @Duleins @GreenHouseFx @LordZ1978 @Romigo @Heathenpride @TDZdave @WIDFO @attrapp @the_proffs @Phouchg @i-was-ere @gtpcaine @merlinrichards @Pluxtheduck @Dowlin39 @J Daniels @theewar @weescotman @euclid58 @Nail-27 @miata13B @gtp_Tenderly @GTP_ADE @Wardez @Jordan The Teams CONCRETE CLIMAX RACING These guys came in with the title of favourites and lived up to expectations. Practice Qualifying almost saw an early setback for the team, with @jammyozzy cracking under the pressure and making mistakes on his 2nd and 3rd hot laps, having already set a banker. His team mates were able to retrieve the situation and took pole by just 0.002. Come race day they were robed of their pole position by a red flag on the parade lap, but by the 3rd hour of the race they were back in the lead, on that they did not relinquish for the rest of the race. They were never pushed hard by competition, but they knew that as a Local Team, once DC that could not be quickly restored could wipe out their lead. Congratulations on a great run at Le Mans, and your 2nd 24 hour race win of the year. Unfortunately CCR will not be included in the individual classifications. Their pictures are of too low a quality, and the required data for anything other than confirming completed laps cannot be extracted. OLD ROSIE RACING As winners of the 2014 GTPlanet Bathurst 12 Hour, this guys were well up to speed on how to run a network endurance race. Due to availability issues they fraught in 2 drivers very late in the day, who earned the title of Super Subs, and I am sure will become fixtures in the ORR stable of driving talent after their Le Mans performance. Whilst never being on top through the whole event, they kept CCR honest and showed great consistency. A solid 2nd place and another GTP Endurance podium. TURTLE RACING LEAGUE Just over 24 hours before the start of the race, the team expressed their intention to withdraw from the event, with much effort, lead by @micantony, they made it to the Parade Lap, and then on to the top step of the podium. Missing Practice Qualifying meant that they came into the race as a bit of an unknown, despite winning the 6 Heures du Spa-Francochamps at the end of June. A consistent performance across the entire team, despite picking up a before dawn which almost tripped them up, was the secret to their success. FANG-IT RACING TEAM This team came into the event looking for a class win and an overall podium, and came so so close. Pole in qualifying by 4.416 reenforced their expectations, but TRL had not showed their hand yet. The charge by the Honda from Down-Unda, was undeniably lead by @TDZdave who recorded the 2nd highest number of laps overall, and took the LM GT-P class best lap time by over 0.500 after a battle for the honers with @BionicDerp. RESTOLHO TEAM The award for 'most improved team' can go nowhere else. After erratic performances in the build up races they pulled out all the stops for the big race and claim a well deserved 3rd place. These guys are not a good advert against drink-driving! REST's complete photo set was only received today and this post will be updated once they have been gone through and the individual results updated. TEAM S.N.A.I.L. (LM GT-P) A disappointing result for a big team was bound to happen in this event, and this time it was S.N.A.I.L.'s turn. Despite their fastest lap time being just 0.270 off the best in class, their average across all drivers increased to nearly 5 seconds. In addition to this, 2 penalties cost them a spot on the podium. I doubt that a organisation of the stature of S.N.A.I.L. will be happy with either of their two team's results. I am sure that their drivers gained a huge amount of invaluable experience from the event, but will be like Sand People. Back soon, and in greater numbers. MADE 4 RACING The only way this team could have made a later entry to the event was if they turned up 2 hours into the race! Despite their lack of preparation for themselves or their car, they hurled themselves at the event with full force and left their mark. The GT-S class was incredibly tight, with less than 4 seconds separating the top 8 drivers in fastest lap time, 3 laps the podium, and 18.5 seconds 2nd and 3rd. M4R suffered a DC at the worst possible time, but held on to the win thanks to lap compensation. A great 1st 24 hour race for the new team, and I am sure they will be fighting for the win every time they turn up. GOTHIC RACING EMPIRE After an underwhelming qualifying performance, it looked like the LM GT-S class was going to be a dead duck, with the team spread so far apart. However GORE know endurance racing and raised their game come race day. Another round of applause is earned by @attrapp & @Phouchg , who put in a combined seat time of 19h 42m, an iron man effort from the Scandinavians! 2nd place is well deserved and the Swedish Racing Green Merc is becoming a welcome requirement of GTP endurance events. LOTUS CLUB GT If you had to sum up the Lotus Club GT team in one word it would be...professionalism. ORR set the bar at Bathurst on how a Network Team should be run, but the Lotus drivers raised it with a jetpack. Their battle with GORE was as close as it can get, and all four drivers proved themselves fierce competitors. However they would not have been able to achieve what they did without their fearless leader @GTP_ADE, who was a model Team Manager before, during, and after the event. TEAM S.N.A.I.L. (LM P1-L) S.N.A.I.L.'s prototype team struggled through qualifying, but with a less than ideal set up it was hope that they would improve come race day, sadly this was not the case. The team looked to be out of their depth and early crashes lost the team chunks of time that they could not recover. By the 6 hour mark they were falling back into the LM GT-P field, 4 laps behind the sister 908 of ORR. At the halfway mark, the bleed had been slowed, 5 laps down. By dawn though, any chance of a comeback was over. During the first half of the race the team clocked up 179 laps, whilst in the 2nd just 150. For comparison ORR recorded 183 and 190. Their effort need to be put into perspective though. Originally a team of 4, half the team went AWOL during race week, and @joetruckv8 was brought in. Joe had been the perennial reserve driver during the build up, and was set to drive at least 4 different cars at different times. IOUW RACING Before the race the other LM GT-S Team Managers agreed to allow a 20BHP break to the BMW, this decision was motivated by the BMW's relatively slow speed through the Speed Trap during Practice Qualifying. This was partly due to the nature of how the car makes it lap time, and partly due to a conservative set up on the cars. Whilst not particularly in the running for a class victory, the guys were aiming for a smooth, consistent run over the 24 hours. Sadly they didn't get that run, losing 3h 14m to DCs. On the positive side, all the teams drivers improved their performance throughout the race, and have established themselves as sim endurance racers. Things can only get better for this squad in the future. The Race The Start No one was more heartbroken over the aborted Parade Lap than me. Having investigated the cause, the problem was not on my end, it looks like we encountered a PSN issue at the worst possible time, or perhaps the best, as we encountered no further critical issues for the rest of the event. The Restart As mentioned in the pre race Q&A, the plan for a mass disconnect was go get going as zoo as you joined the new lobby. I decided to stick to this plan for the restart. Going through the Parade Lap procedure could have taken another 20 minutes, as as the event had got off the the worst possible start, the risk of a repeat was too embarrassing. It was not ideal, but got the job done, this time... The First 6 hours When setting up the new lobby I turned down the race quality to 1 or 2 stars to see if that would help keep the lobby up. As attendance to the practice races was poor, we really were treading new ground. Personally I didn't experience much lag during the next few hours, but during a quick break I notice that some of the people in the Skype chat, were. If someone has posted something in the race chat, I would have seen it, and we could have dealt with it earlier. Nevertheless the 6h 1/4 distance point seemed a good marker for a Red Flag. The Final Three Quarters Increasing the Race Quality to 4 stars has the desired effect, the lag was gone, and the broadcast quality improved. I was extremely impressed by the race craft from most of the drivers, most of the time. Everyone worked together for the benefit of the event. A particular shout out to those who notified the rest of the field when they had crashed or were slow on track. It (doesn't) always rain at Le Mans The chance of rain was very slim, but not impossible. I flirted with the idea of throwing a red flag with 2 hours to go, and playing god, but eventually decided against it, as I don't think the most fatigued amongst us would have appreciated it, and it could have turned to carnage! Post Race Lap Compensation & Penalties I think that enough has been said and written on this subject already, so I will just say that I think now we have a clear and fair system that can be applied to future events. Conclusions and Future Plans Although I was delighted by the quality of the racing and respect on track, and impressed by the resilience of the server (despite its pre race hiccup), the event did not live up to my own high expectations, and I blame no one but myself. During the latter stages of the race I decided that my own enjoyment from taking part in the racing came at the cost of that of the other competitors', and the quality of the event overall. The plane was left on autopilot, it was blinkered, and when it needed to react quickly it was slow and rigid. it wash't good enough and I apologise. For these reasons I have decided to hang up my virtual helmet and take on the full time role of Race Director & Timekeeper for future events. This method of running endurance races, which I am going to christen, Network Endurance Racing System (NERS), is still in its infancy after 2 events, and I think will require one more to perfect and become ready to bring out of 'beta'. Using the data created from Le Mans, I have written some timing & scoring software that will allow (almost) Live Timing for future events. This was the missing piece of the puzzle at Le Mans, and this new addition to NERS, which now becomes Network Endurance Race Direction System (NERDS), will allow competitors to keep track of exactly where they are and how they are performing against their competitors during the event. It will also provide the broadcast and commentary teams the data they need to call and analyse the race as it unfolds. Next time out the rules will be clearer, but tighter. Most people got it spot on right off the bat, and I think grasped it over the course of the race. Next time I think the teams will run like clockwork. There were many more lessons learnt, but I believe that actions are more significant than words, and therefore there is no need to list them all here. London 12 Hour from Brans Hatch This event will offer teams the chance to take part in a shorter event, perhaps fielding 2 cars. It will also provide an opportunity to get to grips with NERDS, for myself, the teams, and the commentators. We want to iron out the kinks before we jump into another 24. It will be held in September with a final data TBD, and will be open to two classes, GT4 and Touring Cars GT3 and GT4. Invites will be sent out soon, however you may regretter your early interest via PM. 24 Heures du Spa-Francochamps Using NERDS version 1.0, this race will be the realisation of almost a year's work and promise. It will be held in October with a final data TBD, and be open to two classes, GT3 and GT4. Invites will be sent out soon, however you may regretter your early interest via PM.