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The 24 Hours of Le Mans is set to get underway from the 8.47-mile Circuit de la Sarthe on Saturday. There are 10 cars and seven teams in the premiere LMP1 field. The Toyota Gazoo Racing No. 8 car — driven by the trio of Sebastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Fernando Alonso — has pole position ahead of the Toyota Gazoo Racing No. 7 car, driven by Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez.
Saturday’s race will begin at 9 a.m. ET, and will be broadcast in its entirety, non-stop, on the Velocity network. If you’re not sure what that is, check your listings and you might just have it. Live streaming of the race, at least in the United States, is relegated to any streaming service that carries Velocity, like Playstation Vue and others.
A subscription to the Motor Trend app will allow on-board cameras of the various teams throughout the race, but will not include the Velocity broadcast.
There are four classes contested in the 24 Hours of Le Mans: LMP1, LMP2, LMGTE Pro and LMGTE Am.
Of particular note in the field this year are two Formula 1 veterans in Alonso and Jenson Button. The duo also served as former teammates when racing in F1. Alonso, in particular, is the big name as he is widely recognized as one of the top drivers in any motorsport in the entire world. He’s trying to prove that with his first appearance at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
Last year’s iteration of the popular endurance race was dramatic and entertaining in a number of ways. The race, which includes multiple classifications of cars, had just six LMP1 (the top classification) cars in the field. Normally those six would fight for all three spots on the podium, but multiple issues led to two non-LMP1 cars making it.
The favored No. 1 Porsche car led for much of the race but suffered a loss of oil pressure in the 21st hour, leading to a retirement from the race. The No. 2 Porsche lost over an hour in the garage during an MGU change, which put it at the back of the field. But excellent driving and superb work from the team in the garage positioned the No. 2 Porsche so well that it cut through the LMP2 field to retake the lead in the 23rd hour of the race.
These are vehicles on the cutting edge of motorsports, and while some would look at 2017’s race and potentially refer to it as a mess, it was a beautiful mess.
How to watch the 24 Hours of Le Mans
Location: Circuit de la Sarthe, Le Mans, France
Time: 9:00 a.m. ET Saturday, June 16 – 9 a.m. ET Sunday, June 17
Online Streaming: Motor Trend (Onboard Cameras), Streaming Services That Carry Velocity