Ten years for Panoz at Le Mans

TEN YEARS AND COUNTING FOR PANOZ AT LE MANS Le Mans, France - When Dr. Don Panoz has a hunch about a new venture, it always seems to turn out right. That was the case in 1997 when he first entered his namesake marque in the prestigious 24 Hours...

TEN YEARS AND COUNTING FOR PANOZ AT LE MANS

Le Mans, France - When Dr. Don Panoz has a hunch about a new venture, it always seems to turn out right. That was the case in 1997 when he first entered his namesake marque in the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Dr. Panoz, founder of the American Le Mans Series, had a feeling the fans at Le Mans would fall in love with the front-engined, closed-top Panoz GTR1. And as his custom, he was right. Since then, the Panoz brand has continued to capture the hearts of those at the 24 Hours and around the world. In addition to the GTR1, entries have included the Q9 electric hybrid (Panoz was the first manufacturer to send an electric car to compete at Le Mans), followed by the LMP-1 Roadster S, the LMP07 and now the Panoz Esperante GTLM.

"To me, Le Mans is a spectacle that honors everything about motorsports. It stands on its own," Dr. Panoz said Thursday, surrounded by many of the drivers who have driven Panoz entries at the 24 Hours. "I was so blown away by my first year here. To see what was going on was phenomenal."

On the 10th occasion of a Panoz entry at Le Mans, there are two Panoz Esperante GTLMs entered in the GT2 class - the Sebring-winning car from Multimatic Motorsports Team Panoz and one from Team LNT. Given the strong performances by both cars already this year, why shouldn't the Esperante GTLMs be considered favorites?

"Every person who comes here with a car thinks they can win," Dr. Panoz said. "We have very good cars here. Sebring proved that our car is reliable, but Le Mans is always a unique challenge. You learn something new every year."

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About this article
Series ALMS , Le Mans
Drivers Don Panoz
Teams Multimatic Motorsports , Team LNT