Mercedes-Benz CLR

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Mercedes-Benz CLR
Mercedes-Benz CLR front 2009 Nurburgring.jpg
Category Le Mans Grand Tourer Prototype (LMGTP)
Constructor Mercedes-Benz (HWA GmbH)
Designer(s) Gerhard Ungar
Technical specifications[1][2]
Chassis Carbon fiber and aluminium honeycomb monocoque
Suspension (front) Double wishbone suspension with pushrod-activated dampers
Suspension (rear) Same as front
Length 4,893 mm (192.6 in)
Width 1,999 mm (78.7 in)
Height 1,012 mm (39.8 in)
Wheelbase 2,670 mm (105 in)
Engine Mercedes-Benz GT108C 5,721 cc (349.1 cu in) V8, naturally-aspirated, mid-mounted
Transmission Xtrac 6-speed sequential manual
Weight Appr. 900 kg (2,000 lb)
Fuel Mobil 1
Tyres Bridgestone
Competition history
Notable entrants Germany AMG-Mercedes
Notable drivers Germany Bernd Schneider
Germany Nick Heidfeld
Germany Marcel Tiemann
France Franck Lagorce
France Jean-Marc Gounon
France Christophe Bouchut
Australia Mark Webber
Portugal Pedro Lamy
United Kingdom Peter Dumbreck
Debut 1999 24 Hours of Le Mans
Races Wins Poles F.Laps
1 0 0 0

The Mercedes-Benz CLR was a set of racing cars developed for Mercedes-Benz through a collaboration with in-house tuning division Mercedes-AMG and motorsports specialists HWA GmbH.[3] Designed for the Le Mans Grand Touring Prototype (LMGTP) regulations, the CLRs were intended to compete in numerous sports car events during 1999, most notably at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. It was the third in a series of sport cars campaigned by Mercedes, following the CLK GTRs and CLK LMs that had débuted in 1997 and 1998 respectively, and intended as Mercedes' largest effort to win Le Mans overall for the first time since 1989. Three CLRs were entered for Le Mans after performing nearly 22,000 mi (35,000 km) of testing.[3]

At Le Mans the CLRs suffered aerodynamic instabilities along the circuit's long straight sections. The car of Australian Mark Webber became airborne and crashed heavily in qualifying, requiring a lengthy rebuild. Webber and the repaired CLR returned to the track in a final practice session on the morning of the race where the car once again became airborne, crashed, and was withdrawn. During the race, Scotsman Peter Dumbreck's CLR suffered the same problems and also became airborne, this time vaulting the circuit's safety barriers and crashing in an open field. These incidents led Mercedes to not only withdraw their remaining car from the event, but also to cancel the entire CLR program and move the company out of sports car racing.[4]

Background[edit]

A CLK GTR competing in the FIA GT Championship

In 1996 Mercedes-Benz's motorsports programs included backing and engine supply for the McLaren Formula One team, an engine supply program for various teams in the American IndyCar series, and support for cars in the International Touring Car Championship built by racing partner AMG. Following the collapse of the ITCC at the end of the 1996 season, Mercedes' third program shifted to a new international series, the FIA GT Championship.[5] AMG were tasked with developing a design to meet the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile's GT1 regulations for the new FIA GT Championship. The new cars, known as the CLK GTR, were designed for use both as a racing car and a street legal production car available to the public as part of the series' regulations. The CLK GTRs were successful in their début season, winning seven of eleven races and earning both the drivers[6] and teams championships.[7]

For the 1998 season AMG refined the CLK GTR platform with the launch of the evolved CLK LM. A major change for the new cars were the replacement of the CLK GTR's V12 engine with a smaller V8, thought by Mercedes to be more adept to take on longer endurance events such as the 24 Hours of Le Mans, a race not part of the FIA GT calendar.[8] Despite earning pole position for Le Mans, the new cars were unreliable and both lasted less than three hours before retiring from mechanical failures.[9][10] The race was won by the Mercedes' FIA GT rivals Porsche.[11] Mercedes did go on to win their second straight FIA GT Championships later that year after winning all ten races.[12][13]

After the dominance of Mercedes most of the GT1 class competitors chose to not return to the FIA GT Championship for 1999, leading the FIA to eliminate the category from the series. The Automobile Club de l'Ouest (ACO), organizers of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, chose to follow the FIA's lead and no longer allow GT1 category cars to enter Le Mans. While FIA GT concentrated solely on their lower GT2 category in 1999, the ACO created a new category of race car known as a Le Mans Grand Touring Prototype (LMGTP). The LMGTP regulations for closed-cockpit cars were similar to the former GT1 regulations, but shared many elements with the ACO's existing open-cockpit Le Mans Prototype (LMP) category. Mercedes, no longer able to compete in the FIA GT Championship with their existing cars, chose to concentrate their efforts on the ACO's new LMGTP category.[14]

Development[edit]

The low profile of the CLR

Work on the CLR began in September 1998 as Mercedes was closing out their second FIA GT Championship season. Development of the new car was led by HWA GmbH, which in 1998 was created as a motorsports division of AMG before becoming divested when AMG was merged into Mercedes-Benz's parent company DaimlerChrysler in 1999.[3][15] The new LMGTP rule set did not require road legal versions of the cars to be built so Gerhard Unger, chief designer for HWA,[2] was free to develop a racing car without concern for road legality issues or the inclusion of driver comforts. The transition from GT1 to LMGTP also allowed a decrease in the minimum allowed weight, from 950 kg (2,090 lb) to 900 kg (2,000 lb).[16][a] The new design had a much smaller cockpit monocoque made from carbon fiber and aluminium honeycomb. The monocoque shared its lower half from the CLK LM's combination of carbon fiber and steel tube frame, but required a full carbon and aluminium upper half due to new load tests mandatory for LMGTP cockpits.[16] The bodywork of the CLR was also much lower, 10 cm (4 in) shorter in overall height compared to the CLK LM,[3] while the nose was substantially lower and flatter than its predecessor due to a shorter wheelbase allowing longer overhangs.[16] Aerodynamic development on the design was carried out at the University of Stuttgart's wind tunnel and assisted by the Italian specialists Fondmetal Technologies.[19] Aerodynamic emphasis was placed on low drag for maximum top speed.[8] Mercedes-Benz's brand image was also retained with the reuse of CLK-Class tail lights from the CLK LM and a front grill and headlights based on the then-new CL-Class.[3]

The powerplant for the CLR was also a variant of the design used on the CLK LM. The GT108C 32 valve[19] V8 engine was loosely based on the M119 engine used in Mercedes-Benz road cars at that time. A previous variant of the M119 had won Le Mans for Mercedes in 1989. Displacement was increased from 5.0 L (310 cu in) to 5.7 L (350 cu in) to compensate for the new air restrictor limitations in the LMGTP category,[3] and allowed the motor to produce approximately 600 bhp (450 kW; 610 PS). The first engine was completed and began testing in December 1998. The Xtrac 6-speed sequential gearbox came directly from the CLK LM,[3] while Bridgestone continued as the team's tyre supplier.[2] The suspension setup from the CLK LM was largely carried over to the CLR, although a central spring was added to the rear suspension.[20]

Mercedes announced their CLR program to the world in February 1999[21] just days before the first car began private testing at California Speedway in the United States.[3] Testing continued into March at California as well as Homestead-Miami Speedway in Florida[19] before the team moved to the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours in France. At Magny-Cours three CLRs completed a 30 hour test session covering 8,073 mi (12,992 km).[3] On 20 April the CLR was shown to the press for the first time during a test session at the Hockenheimring in Germany. By that point in the development process 21,735 mi (34,979 km) had been covered by CLRs in testing without any major failures.[3]

1999 season[edit]

The initial schedule for the CLRs consisted of participation in the May pre-qualifying and testing session at Le Mans in preparation for the race in June. At the April début the team also announced plans to enter several races after Le Mans. The first, scheduled for July, was to be an exhibition event consisting of two 60 mi (97 km) sprint races at the Norisring street circuit in Nuremberg, Germany. Mercedes planned to enter four CLRs in the event. The team would then end their season with the final three races of the American Le Mans Series: the 10-hour Petit Le Mans at Road Atlanta and sprint races at Laguna Seca Raceway and Las Vegas Motor Speedway.[22] Personnel from HWA formed the crew for the three cars[3] although the team was entered under the AMG-Mercedes title.[17]

As part of their launch announcement in February 1999, Mercedes named nine drivers to the team. Retained from the FIA GT program were Christophe Bouchut, Jean-Marc Gounon, Bernd Schneider, Marcel Tiemann, and Mark Webber. Nick Heidfeld, then a test driver for the McLaren Mercedes Formula One team, was added to the team for his first experience with sports cars. 1998 Macau Grand Prix winner and All-Japan Formula Three champion Peter Dumbreck also came from an open wheel racing background.[23] 1998 FIA GT2 Champion Pedro Lamy was drafted from the Oreca Chrysler team, while Franck Lagorce transferred from Nissan's Le Mans squad.[21] Darren Turner, also a test driver for McLaren, served as the team's reserve driver for Le Mans.[24]

Le Mans[edit]

Practice and qualifying[edit]

Mercedes had earned a guaranteed entry for Le Mans by winning the 1998 FIA GT Championship, but their two remaining cars were required to pass through pre-qualifying to be allowed to enter the race proper. Gounon, Tiemann, and Webber were assigned to the No. 4 CLR which utilized the automatic entry while Bouchut, Dumbreck, and Heidfeld in the No. 5 and Lagorce, Lamy, and Schneider in the No. 6 entries would have to qualify for the race on their lap times.[3] The pre-qualifying session, held in May, took the 62 entries received by the ACO down to 48 for the race proper based on their lap times within their respective classes; the prototype category, combining LMP and LMGTP cars, only allowed the fastest 28 cars from 31 entries. Competitors in the prototype category in 1999 included factory-supported LMGTP efforts from Toyota and Audi, and LMP programs from Nissan, BMW, Audi, and Panoz. Toyota set the fastest pre-qualifying time overall, followed by Panoz and BMW. Mercedes No. 6 was the sixth fastest car, while No. 4 and No. 5 were 14th and 15th respectively. Although the cars succeeded in passing pre-qualifying, one CLR suffered a setback when a suspension linkage was torn from the front of the monocoque. The suspension failure was the first major fault suffered by the CLRs since their testing début in February.[19]

Following pre-qualifying, Mercedes' three cars were allowed to participate in two days of practice and qualifying in the week leading up to the race in June. The sessions would set the starting grid for the race based on the fastest overall lap time by each car. At the end of the first day Mercedes' entries were fifth, sixth, and eighth on the provisional grid. Toyota led the session, over four seconds ahead of the fastest Mercedes.[25] Early in the second day of sessions, CLR No. 4 driven by Webber was following the Audi R8R of Frank Biela through the portion of the circuit connecting Mulsanne Corner and the Indianapolis complex when he moved out of the Audi's slipstream to prepare a pass.[26][27] The CLR suddenly lifted its nose and front wheels off the circuit and became airborne, flipping upwards and somersaulting backwards before rotating onto its side. The car impacted the tarmac with its right side while perpendicular to the circuit then flipped back onto its wheels before skidding 300 m (980 ft) into the safety barriers on the side of the circuit.[19][26] Webber was extracted from the car by track marshals and taken to a nearby hospital suffering from a sore neck, chest, and back.[24] The accident occurred in an area not generally accessible to the public and was not seen by television cameras further up the circuit.[28]

The locations of the CLR accidents on the Circuit de la Sarthe:
Red: Webber's qualifying accident
Green: Webber's warm-up accident
Blue: Dumbreck's race accident

Due to the accident the No. 4 car was unable to improve its qualifying time from the previous day, relegating the car to tenth on the starting grid as competitors improved their times; Mercedes No. 5 also did not improve its lap time and finished the session seventh. Bernd Schneider was able to go quicker than his time from the previous day with a 3:31.541 lap for the No. 6 car. Toyota took pole position with a 3:29.930 lap, while Schneider's car was placed fourth on the final starting grid.[29] The wreckage of the No. 4 CLR was returned to Mercedes at the end of the qualifying session and the team issued a press release confirming that they could repair the car before the start of the race two days later.[27] A spare CLR monocoque, taken from their test car, was used to rebuild the No. 4.[b] Webber was able to recover from his injuries by spending the following day in physical training and was cleared on Saturday morning to participate in the race.[26]

Warm-up[edit]

On the morning of the race a warm-up session lasting half an hour was held as a final preparation for the teams. The No. 4 Mercedes, repaired after its Thursday accident, joined its two teammates on the circuit as the session began. Webber was once again driving the No. 4 car as the trio made their way down the Mulsanne Straight. Approaching Mulsanne Corner Webber trailed his two teammates but was approximately 15 m (50 ft) behind a Chrysler Viper GTS-R entered by Team Oreca.[26] Cresting a hill at the approach to the corner, Webber's car lifted its nose into the air once again and rose to nearly 9.1 m (30 ft) above the track, somersaulting backwards before twisting towards its right and impacting the tarmac with the right rear of the car while inverted, shedding its engine cover, rear wing, and nose. The car skidded on its roof into a run-off area just short of the roundabout next to the Mulsanne Corner before coming to a halt. The CLR was swarmed by marshals who were eventually able to right the Mercedes and extract Webber, who sustained no major injuries. Television cameras located at Mulsannes Corner captured the aftermath of the accident and broadcast pictures of the CLR on its roof to the worldwide audience.[30] Photographers in the same location also captured the car as it flipped. The ACO later published these photographs in their 1999 yearbook.[1][28]

Mercedes immediately withdrew CLR No. 4 from the event as the race was only a few hours from beginning.[31] Norbert Haug, head of Mercedes-Benz's motorsport activities, contacted Adrian Newey, chief aerodynamicist of the McLaren Formula One team, for consultation on modifying the remaining CLRs to prevent further accidents. The drivers were also consulted on whether they believed the cars were too dangerous to race. Backed by their drivers, Mercedes opted to make modifications to the front bodywork of the two remaining cars by adding dive planes to the fenders for increased downforce and a sacrifice of overall top speed.[26] The drivers were also instructed to not follow other cars too closely.[32]

Race[edit]

With only two CLRs remaining, Mercedes took the race start from their fourth and seventh place grid positions. Schneider was able to move into third place behind the two Toyotas in the opening laps while Bouchut followed in fourth. As the Toyotas made their first pit stops, Schneider took over second place before making his first pit stop and relinquishing the position to the pair of BMWs.[33] The No. 1 Toyota eventually suffered transmission issues which dropped it down the order, leaving the top six positions to be swapped amongst the two remaining Toyotas, two Mercedes, and two BMWs as they made pit stops on different schedules.[34] Driver changes during later pit stops had Lagorce getting in the No. 6 to replace Schneider, while Dumbreck replaced Bouchut in the No. 5. Schneider reported that, despite some problems dealing with the car's new aerodynamics in the beginning of the race, they had been dealt with by the end of his stint and that the CLR was running well.[35]

Towards the close of the fourth hour of the race, Dumbreck's Mercedes had contact with the GTS-class Porsche 911 GT2 of the Estoril Racing team at the Ford Chicanes, but continued on unhindered.[36][37] On the 76th lap of the race, Dumbreck was in third place and catching the No. 2 Toyota of Thierry Boutsen in second place. The Mercedes and Toyota were nose to tail on the run from Mulsannes Corner to Indianapolis at nearly 200 mph (320 km/h) with both drivers partially blinded by the setting sun ahead of them. At a slight right kink in the straight, Dumbreck's CLR ran over the small apex kerbing and suddenly lifted its front wheels from the ground before somersaulting backwards as the entire car became airborne.[32] The Mercedes rotated three times as it flew in the air, reaching a height of nearly 15 m (50 ft). The car continued its trajectory as the circuit curved to the right, clearing a marshals post and the safety barrier on the left side of the track and missing a large advertising billboard bridging the track just ahead of it. Television cameras broadcasting the live world feed captured the CLR's aerobatics before it went out of view behind trees. The car impacted the ground in an area of woods alongside the circuit that had been cut and cleared only two weeks prior and was inaccessible to spectators.[36] The car dug a rut in the dirt as it continued to tumble in the clearing. The impact forced a tree limb to penetrate the monocoque between the driver's seat and fuel tank.[28] The CLR came to rest right side up and track marshals rushed to the stopped car. Track officials quickly slowed the race with caution flags and safety cars in order to dispatch recovery vehicles.[38] Dumbreck was knocked unconscious after the initial impact[32] but awoke and climbed from the car where he was found by the marshals and local Gendarmerie officers in the area.[36] Dumbreck was later given a breathalyser test by the officers due to Le Mans' use of public roads[26][32] before being transported by ambulance to a local hospital for examinations before being released.[39] At the end of the 76th lap Lagorce was ordered by the team to bring the remaining CLR directly to its garage; upon the car's arrival AMG-Mercedes shut the last of their three garage doors signifying their official retirement from the event.[28][37] National rivals BMW went on to win the race the following day.[28]

Aftermath[edit]

CLR No. 6 appeared at a track day event held at the Nürburgring in 2009. The dive planes added to the car prior to the start of Le Mans are still on the front fenders of the car.

Following the race the ACO and the Fédération Française du Sport Automobile (FFSA) national motorsport body investigated the incidents. The FFSA questioned the ACO's decision to allow Mercedes to continue to compete after the two accidents prior to the race start, but the ACO argued that there were no indications that the problems that befell the No. 4 CLR were shared by the other Mercedes entries. The ACO argued that the design of the CLR, with the longest front and rear overhang amongst the prototype field,[19] was the cause of the problem. A Porsche 911 GT1, similar in design to the CLR, suffered a nearly identical accident the year before at Road Atlanta in the United States. The ACO changed the regulations for the LMGTP category in 2000, decreasing the allowable length of overhang.[40] The FIA also instructed its Advisory Expert Group to develop new regulations to prevent similar airborne accidents in other racing cars.[36] The LMGTP class itself was abandoned by the teams in 2000 as Toyota cancelled their program[41] and Audi concentrated on open-cockpit LMP cars; the class reappeared in 2001.[42]

Peter Dumbreck, in response to his accident, initially blamed the height of the kerbs he had run on when his car became airborne, but Mercedes-Benz responded by stating that blame did not lay with the circuit. The kerbs, as well as the entire Le Mans circuit, were all approved by the FIA.[40] After the 2000 race the ACO and the French government did make modifications to the Route nationale 138 which forms the Mulsanne Straight by decreasing the height of a hill by 7.9 m (26 ft) on the approach to the Mulsanne Corner where Webber had his warm-up accident.[26][43]

Mercedes-Benz immediately addressed criticism from other drivers and teams of their decisions before the race had concluded.[44][45] Haug believed that the team's data from Webber's practice incident had been adequately analyzed and that none of their drivers felt there were problems with their cars in traffic, prompting his decision to continue. He also stated his belief that contact between the No. 5 CLR and the Estoril Porsche may have damaged the front diffuser and led to the aerodynamic instabilities.[46] Shortly after Le Mans Mercedes conducted their own examination of the accidents by running their remaining CLR on an airfield to verify wind tunnel data. Although no conclusion was made by Mercedes the company canceled the rest of their 1999 program, withdrawing from the Norisring exhibition event and the final three rounds of the American Le Mans Series.[4] The team's change in plans at the Norisring eventually led to the entire event being cancelled due to a lack of manufacturer participants.[22] Mercedes returned to touring car racing from 2000 onward,[8] and has not participated at Le Mans in any capacity since 1999.[28]

Following the damage to three CLRs during the Le Mans week,[22] the remaining car has rarely been seen, but has begun to make reappearances in recent years. As part of a 2008 event celebrating the retirement of Bernd Schneider CLR No. 6 was publicly displayed in Sankt Ingbert, Germany.[47] The car appeared once again in 2009 as part of the Modena Track Days at the Nürburgring in the hands of a private owner and was driven on the circuit.[48]

The failures of the CLRs have become lore for Le Mans and motorsport in general. Speed Channel, as part of their tenth anniversary, named their broadcast of Dumbreck's accident as fourth most memorable moment in the network's history.[26] Road & Track magazine's list of the ten most infamous crashes at Le Mans named Webber's warm-up accident as seventh and Dumbreck's crash as second.[30]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Although the LMGTP rules allowed a 900 kg minimum weight, the CLRs were officially measured by the ACO with a weight between 914 kg and 925 kg.[17][18]
  2. ^ There is discrepancy on whether or not CLR No. 4 used a spare chassis to be repaired. Spurring states that the monocoque was not damaged and reused on the rebuilt car.[19] Norbert Haug was however interviewed by Autosport and stated that the team left Le Mans with one intact CLR and three damaged monocoques.[22]

References[edit]

Citations
  1. ^ a b Fuller, Michael J. (2011). "1999 Mercedes-Benz CLR". Mulsanne's Corner. Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  2. ^ a b c "Fiche Voiture/Car's File - Mercedes CLR N°: 4". lemans.org. Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Archived from the original on 1 November 2000. Retrieved 23 April 2012. 
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l "Mercedes-Benz CLR for Le Mans Presented". DaimlerChrysler. 1999. Archived from the original on 8 May 1999. Retrieved 19 October 2014. 
  4. ^ a b "Mercedes prepares to quit CLR project". Autosport. Haymarket Press. 21 July 1999. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  5. ^ Deimel.
  6. ^ "Points Chart: FIA GT1 Drivers Championship". FIA GT Championship. Archived from the original on 3 January 2010. Retrieved 13 March 2009. 
  7. ^ "Points Chart: FIA GT1 Teams Championship". FIA GT Championship. Archived from the original on 3 January 2010. Retrieved 13 March 2009. 
  8. ^ a b c "120 years of Mercedes-Benz motor sport history". Daimler AG. 10 March 2014. Retrieved 14 October 2014. 
  9. ^ "Mercedes CLK LM N°35". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Retrieved 13 March 2009. 
  10. ^ "Mercedes CLK LM N°36". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Retrieved 13 March 2009. 
  11. ^ Brooks, John (26 April 2010). "Retrospective>>Porsche 911 GT1-98". Speedhunters. Retrieved 9 November 2014. 
  12. ^ "Points Chart: FIA GT1 Drivers Championship". FIA GT Championship. Archived from the original on 3 January 2010. Retrieved 13 March 2009. 
  13. ^ "Points Chart: FIA GT1 Teams Championship". FIA GT Championship. Archived from the original on 3 January 2010. Retrieved 13 March 2009. 
  14. ^ Jones, Mark Alan. "The Mercedes Century Photo Album". Atlas F1. Retrieved 9 March 2011. 
  15. ^ "The AMG Story". Mercedes-AMG. Retrieved 8 October 2014. 
  16. ^ a b c Spurring 2014, p. 344.
  17. ^ a b "Mercedes CLR N°6". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Retrieved 12 October 2014. 
  18. ^ "Mercedes CLR N°4". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Retrieved 12 October 2014. 
  19. ^ a b c d e f g Spurring 2014, p. 345.
  20. ^ Humbert, Remi. "Mercedes CLR 1999". Gurney Flap. Retrieved 3 October 2014. 
  21. ^ a b "AMG Mercedes-Benz have announced their driver line-up!". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. 15 February 1999. Archived from the original on 23 February 2000. Retrieved 16 March 2009. 
  22. ^ a b c d "Mercedes withdraws from Norisring". Autosport. Haymarket Press. 22 June 1999. Retrieved 11 September 2009. 
  23. ^ "Peter Dumbreck". Dumbreck Family. Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  24. ^ a b "Webber hospitalized after massive shunt". Autosport. Haymarket Press. 12 June 1999. Retrieved 11 September 2009. 
  25. ^ "Qualifying 1 Official Timing". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Archived from the original on 9 January 2001. Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  26. ^ a b c d e f g h Jensen, Tom (7 March 2006). "SPEED Top 10 Moments #4: Mercedes Le Mans Flip". Speed Channel. Archived from the original on 21 August 2014. Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  27. ^ a b "BMW and Mercedes in full action". lemans.org. Automobile Club de l'Ouest. 10 June 1999. Archived from the original on 24 February 2001. Retrieved 23 April 2012. 
  28. ^ a b c d e f Melissen, Wouter (21 October 2009). "VINTAGE: Bizarre Crash Doomed Benz at Le Mans". Speed Channel. Archived from the original on 24 October 2009. Retrieved 14 August 2012. 
  29. ^ "Qualifying 2 Official Timing". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Archived from the original on 17 November 2000. Retrieved 4 October 2014. 
  30. ^ a b Pruett, Marshall (22 June 2012). "10 Most Infamous Crashes in Le Mans History". Road & Track. Hearst Corporation. Retrieved 8 October 2014. 
  31. ^ "Mercedes run two cars at Le Mans". Autosport. Haymarket Press. 12 June 1999. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  32. ^ a b c d "Peter Dumbreck remembers 1999". lemans.org. Automobile Club de l'Ouest. 25 May 2012. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  33. ^ "Toyota's quick start". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Archived from the original on 22 June 2001. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  34. ^ "19 to 20pm Report". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Archived from the original on 30 October 2000. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  35. ^ Speedvision 1999.
  36. ^ a b c d Spurring 2014, p. 346.
  37. ^ a b "Hour by hour race highlights: 20 h to 20 h 59". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Archived from the original on 26 October 2000. Retrieved 5 October 2014. 
  38. ^ "8 pm to 9 pm". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Archived from the original on 20 May 2000. Retrieved 15 October 2014. 
  39. ^ "Mercedes Withdraws from Le Mans 24 Hours". DaimlerChrysler. 1999. Archived from the original on 29 February 2000. Retrieved 19 October 2014. 
  40. ^ a b "Press Release: The Case Mercedes". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. 18 February 2000. Archived from the original on 23 February 2000. Retrieved 5 October 2014. 
  41. ^ Brooks, John (19 April 2010). "Retrospective>>Toyota GT One – Unfinished Business 2". Speedhunters. Retrieved 14 October 2014. 
  42. ^ Fuller, Michael J. (2011). "1999 Audi R8C". Mulsanne's Corner. Retrieved 14 October 2014. 
  43. ^ "1923-2005 – The Development of the Circuit". Automobile Club de l'Ouest. Archived from the original on 8 January 2009. Retrieved 15 March 2009. 
  44. ^ "Mercedes' race call questioned". Autosport. Haymarket Press. 15 June 1999. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  45. ^ "Mercedes defends decision". Autosport. Haymarket Press. 13 June 1999. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  46. ^ "Mercedes denies flaw in race car". Autosport. Haymarket Press. 15 June 1999. Retrieved 2 October 2014. 
  47. ^ "Rennen und feiern" (in German). Motorsport Aktuell. 9 October 2008. Archived from the original on 5 February 2014. Retrieved 13 March 2009. 
  48. ^ Melissen, Wouter (2 July 2009). "VINTAGE: Modena Brings Out Racing’s Best". Speed Channel. Archived from the original on 16 July 2011. Retrieved 11 September 2009. 
Book
  • Spurring, Quentin (2014). "1999: High fives in Germany". Le Mans 1990-99: The official history of the world's greatest motor race. Sherborne, Dorset: Evro Publishing. p. 384. ISBN 978-0-9928209-1-6. 
Video
  • 24 Hours of Le Mans (Television). Speedvision. 1999. We had to do some changes, and at the beginning we had a little bit problem with that but now the car is running quite well. 
  • Deimel, Helmut. A Star is Born (Video). Mercedes-Benz. 

External links[edit]