What more will FISA do to draw the teeth of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest? Le Mans as we all know is the real jewel in the sports-car crown, with its history of endurance racing. Must we let FISA go on eroding the principles this great race has stood for since 1923?
Once more laying down the laws of conformity, and introducing sprint races, will only serve to either dilute or even destroy the ACO’s control. Asking the teams to detune and build 3.5-litre blocks will destroy the individuality and innovation by which differing approaches to engine configuration have given us such superbly balanced competition, as we had in last year’s racing.
With this uniformity, FISA is heading towards the “Formula One sports-car” and its inherent lack of endurance. What hope has the ACO got but to compromise or break away? Running Le Mans as the complete endurance race, without the benefit of even a 1000km race either side of it in the calendar, should make the ACO more determined to guard the rights of the individual — for example the WM-Peugeot, the rotary Mazda, and the big V12 Jaguar.
How does sports-car technology progress if uniformity rules, and prototypes or Gran Turismo are excluded from endurance? Whither goes the F40 or the Porsche 959, both tailor-made for the Sarthe? “Two squirts and you’re finished” sprint racing is maybe all FISA can control, so leave the prestige, sportsmanship and the kudos of the Vingt-Quatre Heures in the capable hands of the gentlemen of the ACO.
Martin Payne Owslebury, Hampshire
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