Aysedasi's Le Mans

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Le Mans 2022

Le Mans 2023

Le Mans 2023 Ayse's Story

Page 6 - Wednesday 7th June - Allon and Qualifying....



We had an easy getaway from Expo and we were only held up on the way back by the 'roundabout of doom' (as christened by James) just a couple of miles from the hotel.  After a quick turnaround we were heading back to the circuit having replaced Lauren with Allon (as Lauren decided to stay at the hotel and skip the trip out for qualifying in favour of getting some rest) and we headed back to the circuit at 5.30 pm.  We agreed that we would go and watch qualifying at Indianapolis and Arnage and it was an easy journey back as far as Arnage village but then the traffic bogged down (as it usually does) up to the point of the last roundabout on the outskirts.  We made decent progress though until we reached the roundabout which takes traffic by what one might term the 'traditional' route out to Arnage.  We initially followed the masses but it was a nose-to-tail crawl which I suspected would be all the way to the Arnage enclosure.  We had seen some signage back on the roundabout indicating a 'Violet' route - without saying what the violet route was actually for....  So before we found ourselves well and truly locked into this queue we boldly made the decision to turn around and head back to the roundabout and investigate all things 'violet'...  Having put my car park stickers in the windscreen it hadn't escaped my notice that my Arnage/Mulsanne parking sticker was in a fetching shade of violet so it seemed logical to follow that route - and hope!  

Well the decision was an inspired one.  The violet signage appeared at every junction, there were no queues at all and I doubt that we saw more than a dozen cars in either direction along the route.  In effect, we made a loop around the 'traditional' route, avoiding all of the traffic that had ignored the signage - it was brilliant!  The final part of the journey was actually quite amusing - eventually.  We drove past the entrance to what we had always known as the overflow car park (which was completely empty) and drove on down to the car park entrance we had regularly used in the past.  Well, it had always been the entrance in the past...  The lady standing there point blank refused to let us in, directing us back down the road to the overflow.  No amount of pointing at the ticket/sticker on my windscreen was about to make any difference.  So we gave up and resigned ourselves to a long and rather unfair trudge back from the overflow car park.  When we got there however, the penny finally dropped and I realised what the lady up the road had been trying to tell me - we had tried to get into the exit of the car park and had been directed down the road to the new entrance!  Doh!  So we drove in through clouds of dust where the ground was so dry, went around the back of the car park and lo and behold, we were soon parking up in the normal car park...  Obviously it made made sense now and we could see how this additional 'traffic management' for the car park was actually a very good idea.  So full marks to the ACO not only for the magnificent violet diversion and signage but also for the car park arrangements...  

By 6.40 pm we were walking into the circuit with our camping chairs marveling at what seemed to be an almost empty campsite there and we made our way up onto the bank at Indianapolis where we found a spot big enough for our three chairs.  The weather was still glorious, still very much t-shirt and shorts weather - and we watched the qualifying session and then the hour of Road to Le Mans free practice from there.  This was split  by a dinner of slightly unusual merguez baguettes and frites.  The merguez didn't have that oh so familiar burnt red and black texture and colour and was very mild in flavour but enjoyable nonetheless.   
























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