“The thrill of victory! And the agony of defeat.”
These are the famous words that Jim McKay uttered at the beginning of every episode of Wide World of Sports. I can still picture the ski jumper crashing at the end of the ramp and tumbling to the ground. (Never seen it before? I’ll give you a second to Google it.)
This phrase has probably become one of the greatest sports clichés. But there really are no other words to describe what happened at the end of this year’s 24 Hours of LeMans.
The thrill of victory! Porsche scores its 18th overall victory at LeMans. Neel Jani, Marc Lieb, and Romain Dumas take the top step of the podium.
The agony of defeat. Toyota loses its lead to the Porsche with only minutes to go in the 24-hour endurance race when its LMP1 loses power.
The thrill of victory! The Porsche team members cheer and hug as their car takes the lead. Hand out the victory t-shirts!
The agony of defeat. The looks on the Toyota team members’ faces vary from shock to utter sadness. And of course, there are tears.
So if anyone ever decides to revive Wide World of Sports, I’d recommend footage from the last five minutes of this year’s 24 Hours of LeMans. It sums it all up perfectly.