Connect with us

24H Le Mans

Soccer Legend Zidane Named Honorary Le Mans Starter

Zinedine Zidane to wave French Tricolore at the start of 92nd edition of 24H Le Mans…

Photo: Real Madrid FB

The Automobile Club de l’Ouest has named legendary former soccer player Zinedine Zidane as the honorary starter for this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Zidane will wave the French Tricolore on June 15 to release the 62-car field for the 92nd edition of the French endurance classic.

‘Zizou’ is widely regarded as one of the greatest soccer players in French history, winning the World Cup on home soil in 1998.

In his club career, he notably captured back-to-back UEFA Champions League titles with Real Madrid in 2000 and 2001 before guiding the Spanish club to three consecutive wins in the tournament as a manager between 2016 and 2018.

“The 24 Hours of Le Mans is beyond compare,” said Zidane.

“It’s an iconic race for anyone who loves motorsport, for people all around the world. It’s a source of immense pride for France.

“My head is full of images of the race, the legendary drivers, the amazing stories, … although these are images from TV or movie scenes!

“To actually be there will be a first for me and needless to say, I’m extremely honoured to take on the role of starter. I can’t wait to be at the start of the 24 Hours of Le Mans on 15 June!”

Zidane is not the first notable sports figure to be appointed honorary starter for the event. Basketball superstar LeBron James took up the role for last year’s Centenary edition while tennis great Rafael Nadal did so in 2018.

“I would like to thank Zinédine Zidane most sincerely for accepting the role of Starter,” said ACO president Pierre Fillon.

“The 24 Hours of Le Mans is a world-renowned event that, throughout its history, has welcomed some great names from many different horizons.

“Zinedine Zidane is an icon, a sportsman whose talent has inspired generations of fans.

“With a sporting line-up of unprecedented proportions, promising another historic 24 Hours of Le Mans, we couldn’t have hoped for a more prestigious Starter.”

Davey Euwema is Sportscar365's European Editor. Based in The Netherlands, Euwema covers the FIA World Endurance Championship, European Le Mans Series and Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS, among other series.

Click to comment

More in 24H Le Mans