Photo : D.R. - Archives ACO
The 917 is undoubtedly one of the most legendary race cars in the history of Porsche and the 24 Hours of Le Mans. After a difficult start in 1969, it finally scored a victory in La Sarthe for the Stuttgart manufacturer 1970. In 1971 the 917 prototype was a record breaker. During preliminary testing in April, Jackie Oliver reached 386 km/h the Mulsanne Straight, (without chicanes at that time), and set the fastest lap in the history of circuit (3:13.6), crossing the threshold of 250 km/h average speed. In qualifying, Pedro Rodriguez set the fastest ever pole position time of the 24 Hours 3:13.9 Race winners Helmut Marko and Gijs van Lennep set a record for the distance (5335 kilometers to 222 km/h average), which stood until 2010.
Year : 39th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans (12th & 13th June 1971)
Number of cars entered : six
Technical Information :
4.9 litre flat 12 atmospheric
Jo Siffert-Derek Bell (n°17)
Pedro Rodriguez-Jackie Oliver (n°18)
Herbert Müller-Richard Attwood (n°19)
Gérard Larrousse-Vic Elford (n°21)
Helmut Marko-Gijs van Lennep (n°22)
Reinhold Joest-Willy Kauhsen (n°23)
1st (Helmut Marko-Gijs van Lennep)
2nd (Herbert Müller-Richard Attwood)
Retirement (Jo Siffert-Derek Bell, Pedro Rodriguez-Jackie Oliver, Gérard Larrousse-Vic Elford, Reinhold Joest-Willy Kauhsen)
Notable facts : tThree versions of the Porsche 917 bodywork raced at the 24 Hours of Le Mans 1971 : long tail (n°17, 18 et 21), short tail (n°19 et 22) wide body (n°23).