Rebellion LMP2 squad stripped of overall Le Mans podium
The Rebellion LMP2 squad has been stripped of its overall Le Mans 24 Hours podium, after video evidence found the Swiss squad guilty of a bodywork infringement used to restart its engine after pitstops.
Nelson Piquet Jr, David Heinemeier Hansson and Mathias Beche had taken Rebellion's #13 Oreca 07-Gibson to the team's first outright podium finish at La Sarthe last Sunday, taking advantage of only two LMP1 cars finishing the race and none without significant mechanical trouble.
The #13 trio ended up three laps behind the winning Porsche LMP1 in third overall, and two laps down on the winning LMP2 car, the #38 DC Racing Oreca of Oliver Jarvis, Thomas Laurent and Ho-Pin Tung.
However, Rebellion was found to be guilty post-race of "modifying a homologated part and using it partly during the race," and has been disqualified from the results.
The offence relates to a "hole that [had] been fashioned by the competitor in the right-hand side of the engine cover," which had been done to grant the Rebellion crew access to the starter motor – to tap a malfunctioning solenoid to reset it – without having to remove the engine cover and rear bodywork.
This in effect meant the #13 car ran the final part of the event with non-homologated bodywork, without any "crash damage or other cause which may be in mitigation".
Stewards were informed of this fact by a video taken by the technical delegate's staff during a pitstop, which was then shown to Rebellion.
The disqualification promotes the second DC Racing LMP2 car, the #37 machine shared by Alex Brundle, Tristan Gommendy and David Cheng, to second in class and third overall.
Signatech Alpine's #35 entry moves up to fourth, while the United Autosports Ligier inherits fifth. Toyota's only finisher, the #8 TS050 Hybrid, is promoted to eighth overall.
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