City of Le Mans names a street after the Bentley Boys

Bentley on Thursday received a high honor in the city of Le Mans, France, where the famed endurance race takes place. One street was renamed “Rue des Bentley Boys” in a ceremony presided over by the mayor of Le Mans.

Translated to English, the sign reads “Street of Bentley Boys.” Previously, the road was known as “Rue de Laigne.”

For those not up to speed on Bentley motorsport history, the “Bentley Boys” were a group of wealthy men who raced some of W.O. Bentley’s first race cars at the 24 Hours of Le Mans between 1924 and 1930. They posted their first victory in 1924 working with Bentley Boy John Duff and claimed four more consecutive victories between 1927 and 1930. Not only did the Bentley Boys win races, they broke speed records in the British race cars.

Le Mans renames street 'Bentley Boys' to honor Bentley

Le Mans renames street ‘Bentley Boys’ to honor Bentley

After a 73-year dormancy, Bentley returned to Le Mans in 2001 and won the endurance race in 2003.

The honor comes as the luxury marque celebrates its 100th anniversary, and aside from the street-naming ceremony, Bentley has more planned for this weekend’s 24 Hours of Le Mans. To kick off the race on Saturday, Bentley will run a 25-car-strong parade of various cars from its history around the racetrack. Among the cars will be the 2003 Le Mans race-winning EXP Speed 8, the 1925 3 Litre “Speed,” the 4 ½ Blower, a Brooklands, and a Continental GT3-R. The cars will be paced by the recently revealed 2020 Flying Spur sedan as it makes its dynamic debut.

Le Mans renames street 'Bentley Boys' to honor Bentley

Le Mans renames street ‘Bentley Boys’ to honor Bentley

On Friday, noteworthy historic cars are also taking part in the celebrations at a trackside display outside of Dunlop Curve called “Bentley Through The Decades.” They include the 1927 3-Litre No 2 Team Car from the 1930 race, a Team Blower, an R-Type Continental, a Series 1 FS Continental, and the 1926 3-Litre Team Car No 8 EXP 2. The latter is the oldest surviving Bentley and although it never raced at Le Mans, it racked up 11 first-place finishes elsewhere.

July 10 officially marks Bentley’s 100th birthday. Other celebrations are scheduled around the world throughout the year.

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