This weekend the 2 Tours d’Horloge, the only competition in the world reserved for Historic Racing Cars run over a period of 24 hours without interruption, took place on the Paul Ricard circuit. The 17th edition confirmed the race’s success as proved by the growing number of crews taking part. Victory went to the Tiga SC 83 entered by the British Team Rosbif Hyett for the father/sons crew Charlie, Ross and Nick Hyett.

After qualifying on a dry track in which the Lola T70 MK3B driven by the British crew Steven Brooks/Jamie Constable/Michael Cantillon took pole position, much less clement weather awaited the competitors the next day for the Le Mans type start. Heavy showers and thick fog descended on the Provençal circuit forcing Race Control to start the race at 15:00 behind the safety car. The drivers on the track had to wait for 17 laps, or 1 hour 9 minutes for the conditions to improve and for the green flag to be waved to finally unleash the field!

Battle was quickly joined at the front between the Porsche 930 Turbo of Pascal Duhamel/Sébastien Crubile and the Lola T70 MK3B which started on pole position. As the laps unfolded, the Lionspeed GP Porsche 964 Cup entrusted to Jose Garcia/ Timmo Mol/Patrick Kolb /Patric Niederhauser, the Tiga SC 84 of the title holders, Britons Chris Snowdon/David Houghton/Mike Fry/ Joshua Law, the Tiga SC 83 of Charlie, Ross and Nick Hyett , the Rover SD 1 (ex René Metge ) in the hands of Nick Sleep /Alex Montgomery/Alex Taylor and the Porsche 911 3.0 RS in the hands of Serge Libens /Marc and Christine de Siebenthal /Henrique Gemperle all joined in the fight!

As the hours passed, technical problems and racing incidents brought the progress of certain front-running cars to a halt starting with the Lola T70 MK3B of Steven Brooks/Jamie Constable/Michael Cantillon, victim of its accelerator cable, which fell below 30th spot in the overall classification. Then the Tiga SC 84 of the 2022 winners was involved in a collision and was forced to return to its pit to change a broken wishbone, which relegated the car below 20th place.

At the end of the 5th hour of the race, the Porsche 964 Cup of Jose Garcia/ Timmo Mol/Patrick Kolb /Patric Niederhauser led the general classification with two laps in hand over the Tiga SC 83 of Charlie, Ross and Nick Hyett and three laps ahead of the Porsche 930 Turbo crewed by Pascal Duhamel/Sébastien Crubile. These positions remained stable until the start of the 8th hour of the race when the leading car pitted. The Porsche 964 Cup encountered a crankshaft pulley problem which required an engine change and definitively compromised its chances of victory. The team had no choice but to retire the car. Charlie, Ross and Nick Hyett’s Tiga SC 83 inherited the lead of the race ahead of the Porsche 930 Turbo of Pascal Duhamel/Sébastien Crubile and the Chevron B16 in the hands of Matthieu and Paul Chateaux /Alexandre Faucher/Franck Morel who had clawed their way back up the time sheets.

The return of thick fog then disrupted the smooth running of the event forcing Race Control to bring out the red flag and interrupt the race for an hour for obvious safety reasons. The night also produced its fair share of unexpected twists and turns in particular affecting the Porsche 930 Turbo of Pascal Duhamel/Sébastien Crubile (2nd in the overall classification), which tagged the Porsche 911 3.0 RS of Serge Libens /Marc and Christine de Siebenthal /Henrique Gemperle forcing it to return to the pits with the front drive train and one wheel damaged. Repairs relegated the German GT to 11 laps behind the Tiga SC 83 of Charlie, Ross and Nick Hyett who remained in the lead.

There was disappointment for Trajectus, the team of three-time winner of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Benoît Tréluyer, entered with his son Jules, Christophe Billot and Nicolas Beloou, whose Porsche 944 Turbo, leader of the GT category, was just outside the Top 10 before being the victim of engine cutouts and fell back to 30th place. After the rain and the fog, a radiant sunrise in a completely clear sky greeted the competitors still in the running. The Tiga SC 83 of the British Team Rosbif Hyett continued to monopolise the lead in the overall classification, while the Porsche 930 Turbo prepared by Crubile Sport for the Pascalou Racing team was fighting for 2nd place with the March 81S of the Palmyr team driven by “Nelson”/François Belle/Augustin Sanjuan. The Team Rosbif Snowdon’s Tiga SC 84, the defending champion, began a spectacular comeback. Running below 20th place at the start of the race, it clawed its way back up to sixth place where it finished.

After 24 hours racing and 469 laps completed, the Tiga SC 83 run by the British Team Rosbif Hyett for the father/sons crew of Charlie, Ross and Nick Hyett won the 17th edition of the 2 Tours d’Horloge in the overall classification, as well as the SP 2000 category. The Porsche 930 Turbo driven by the 2-man crew of Pascal Duhamel/Sébastien Crubile, who shared the wheel for the duration of the race, came home 2nd in the overall classification and 1st in the GTS category ahead of the March 81S of “Nelson” /François Belle/Augustin Sanjuan (2nd in the SP 2000 category).

Fourth in the overall classification, the Chevron B16 entered by the Chateaux Sport Auto team for the driver lineup of Matthieu and Paul Chateaux /Alexandre Faucher/Franck Morel won the SP category ahead of its sister car in the hands of Didier and Julien Gruau/José Beltramelli /Pierre-Alain France and the twin-rotor engined Chevron of Romain Belleteste /Christophe Gadais /Daniel Roustan/Jose Oliveira.

Cinquième de la hiérarchie générale, la Porsche 911 3.0 RS de Serge Libens/Marc et Christine de Siebenthal/Henrique Gemperle décroche également la 2e position de la catégorie GTS.

The Saloon Car category saw the victory of the TVR Griffith 200 of Eric Van de Vyver /Léo Mothe /Patrick Brossard/Thierry Mathez ahead of the Porsche 911 SC 3.0 of Christophe Gaultier/Stéphane Deshayes /Mickael Bossuet/Alexandre Scher and the BMW 323i of Eric Wassermann/Charles Veillard /Bert Smeets /Eric Baumard, which led the category for a long time before being forced to change the gearbox in the closing hours of the race.

Armand Mille/Guillaume Mahé/Erwin France drove their BMW 635 Group A (ex-Thierry Boutsen) to first place in the Touring category ahead of the Rover SD 1 (ex-René Metge) of Nick Sleep /Alex Montgomery/Alex Taylor and the BMW M3 E30 piloted by Philippe Truffier/Pedro Fernandes/Alexandre Boutin.

Philippe Raffin /Louis Ortion /Claudio Sirianni /Jean-Marie Duysens’ Porsche 944 S2 won the GT category ahead of the Alpine V6 GT of Jean-Jacques and Cyril Mancel/Alexander Thiel /Gaël Le Cleac’h and the Porsche 944 S2 run by the Cudini Racing Team and driven by Arnold Noret /Philippe Vigneron/Jacques Colibet /Cyril Raymond. Entered by the same squad, the 944 Turbo of Christian Noret /Nicolas Rossignol/Cyril Raymond and Grégory Galiffi, the presenter of the Direct Auto show on C8, were among the front-runners in the GT category for a long time before suffering engine problems, which forced them to throw in the towel.

Jean-Pierre Gagick, the host of Auto Moto on TF1, associated with Pierre Novikoff (Artcurial Motorcars) and Nicolas Siebenschuh in a Ford Escort MK1, also had to retire early on in the morning due to engine failure.

It’s also worth underlining the performance of Team Bersi Immobilier with Damien Kohler /Jean-Jacques Renault/Jean-Michel Villot /José Da Rocha in a 911 3.0 RS, which ran in the Top 5 for a long time before retiring due to gearbox failure with five hours to go to the chequered flag. In the Historic Pre-70 classification, victory went to the BMW 2002 TI in the hands of Jérémy and Alexandre Ferrer/Quentin Jouanny /Samuel Macarty ahead of the Ford Mustang of Stéphane, Baptiste and Mathieu Guyot-Sionnest/Marc Berger-Grimaud, the Austin Mini 1300 driven by Thierry, Enzo and Frédéric Thiefain /Hyppolite Collard and the Lotus Elan of the 100% women’s crew, Michaela Etcheverry/Charlotte Lacoste/Cathy Briffa.


n°16 (Porsche 911 3.0 RS)(Team Bersi): Damien Kohler/Jean-Jacques Renault/Jean-Michel Villot/José Da Rocha (gearbox)

n°59 (Lola T70 MK3B)(OC Racing): Steven Brooks/Jamie Constable/Michael Cantillon (oil leak)

n°99 (Porsche 911 3.2 SC)(JH Racing Team): Julien Hardonnière/Franck Hardonnière/Sébastien Hardonnière/Mégane Hardonnière (engine)

n°75 (Porsche 964 Cup)(Lionspeed GP): Jose Garcia/Timmo Mol/Patrick Kolb/Patric Niederhauser (engine)

n°7 (Ford Escort MK1)(RSO): Nicolas Siebenschuh/Pierre Novikoff/Jean-Pierre Gagick (engine)

n°69 (Chevron B8 GT)(John of B/Crubile Sport): « Mister John of B »/« Son of B »/« Looping »/« Le Commandeur » (cylinder-head gasket)

n°169 (Shelby Cobra Daytona)(Hyracing): Olivier Muytjens/Brice Pineau/Gilles Vannelet/Olivier Bougrat (gearbox and hub carrier)

n°37 (Alpine A310 Gr.4)(Le circuit français/Quarkus): Renaldo Da Cunha/Damien Alfano/Miguel Santos/José Soler (fuel system)


Déjà vainqueur de la course de Roadster Pro Cup disputée vendredi, Olivier Martin a récidivé samedi matin en s’imposant pour la seconde fois du week-end. Il est rejoint sur le podium par les équipages Martin/Martin et Visentin/Durville.

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Crédits photos : Tchaul31 Photographies