The Belgian driver, Jacky Ickx, in a Porsche Turbo beat the lap record for the 8.5 mile (13.64 kilometre) Le Mans circuit on Wednesday (7 June) during a preliminary practice for the 24-Hours motor race.
EXT GV PAN: Cars and mechanics working in pits at the Le Mans circuit.
MV: Martini Porsche in pits.
MV: Car no.43(Porsche) in pits.
MV PAN: Car no.71 (Inaltera) being pushed through pit.
MV: Woman with mechanics.
MV: Car no.86 (Ferrari) pushed by mechanics.
GV: Car around track.
GV PAN: Car through bends and around straights.
GV PAN: Car down straight.
TRAVELLING SHOTS ON: Renault Elf around course. (3 SHOTS)
NIGHT EXT: Car through bends and away past pit.
HIGH ANGLE: Cars in pits.
HIGH ANGLE PAN: Cars through bends and down straight.
SPORT: MOTOR RACING
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Background: The Belgian driver, Jacky Ickx, in a Porsche Turbo beat the lap record for the 8.5 mile (13.64 kilometre) Le Mans circuit on Wednesday (7 June) during a preliminary practice for the 24-Hours motor race.
SYNOPSIS: Sixty-four cars took part in the preliminary event, and it is already clear that the big race in the weekend will be a duel between Porsche and renault entries.
Porsche driver Rolf Stommelen of West Germany clocked the second best time in the practice, reaching a top speed of just under 222 miles an hour on the straight.
Ferrari is represented by five entries, but all the interest will be on the battle between Porsche and renault. Porsche won for the third time in a row last year. It was also the fourth win for Jacky Ickx, and he starts firm favourite again this year.
Much of the circuit at Le Mans is in fact on roads used every day by local traffic. The only purpose-built section is the main straight where the pits are situated. The circuit is just over 8 miles (13.4 kms), and the cars lap it in three and a half minutes.
The event is considered the world's greatest motor endurance race. The night section comes early, as its been a tradition since the race began in 1923 to start at four o'clock in the afternoon. Though practice times are not really significant -- the cars have to be driven at less than their maximum so as to last the punishing 24-hours-- they are important as a morale booster, in an event that represents a massive investment by motor manufacturers.