2015 24 Hours of Le Mans: Hour 15 Update – Porsche and Audi battle heats up as KCMG dominates LMP2


The hour started with the fallout from the collision between the #99 Aston Martin Vantage V8 and the #46 Thiriet by TDS Racing Oreca, while the Aston Martin made it back to the garage, the LMP2 machine would have to wait another 10 minutes to be recovered.

The LM GTE Pro class was getting a shake up, with the #99 Aston Martin falling down the times and the #64 Corvette Racing – GM Chevrolet Corvette C7R in the pits changing brakes.

At the front Earl Bamber was still leading in the #19 Porsche 919 Hybrid but Benoit Treluyer was setting his sights on the number 1 position in his #7 Audi R18 e-tron Quattro.

In LMP2 the TDS car was still in the pits, this meant the #47 KCMG Oreca 05 – Nissan was able to stretch its legs and increase the lead to 2 laps over the #26 G-Drive Ligier JS P2 -Nissan. The #48 Murphy Prototypes car was now sitting in third place with 2014 winners Jota in fourth.

Back at the front Bamber had found his pace, setting the fastest lap for the #19 Porsche with a 3m18.596s, shortly before a scheduled pitstop turned in to a nightmare. A Ferrari in the garage next to Porsche was in the pits as Bamber came in, meaning the New Zealander couldn’t pull in to his pit box correctly, the team would lose time as they straightened the 919 Hybrid and Treluyer would move in to the lead.

Credit: Ferrari
Credit: Ferrari

It the GTE Pro class Giammaria Bruni would bring the #51 lead Ferrari in to hand over to Giancarlo Fisichella, as a result the lead would be handed over to the #64 Corvette. In the Am class Pedro Lamy remained in the lead in the #98 Aston Martin.

A clockwork pitstop from the Audi team would see Treluyer complete his pitstop 5 seconds quicker than the earlier Porsche stop by Bamber. Further stops from Jota (LMP2 Fourth place) and Strakka (LMP2 Sixth place) would be completed with no issues as news filtered through that the TDS car would most likely be joining the list of retired cars due to the damage caused by the earlier accident. Matt Howson would complete a comfortable stop for the KCMG team to remain in a dominant first place for the LMP2 class.

The battle of the Porsche and Audi at the front had seen the gap between the two cars reach 53 seconds, amazing to think how close these two cars were after 15 hours of racing!

As the hour closed out Fisichella set the fastest lap for the #51 AF Corse Ferrari as he looked to chase down the lead Corvette. Romain Dumas brought the #18 Porsche in for a scheduled stop as Bamber started to extend his lead.

Top 3 positions in each class after Hour 15 of the 83rd 24 Hours of Le Mans

LMP1

  • #19 Porsche 919 Hybrid – Hulkenberg/Bamber/Tandy
  • #7 Audi R18  e-tron quattro – Fassler/Treluyer/Lotterer
  • #9 Audi R18 e-tron quattro – Albuquerque/Bonanomi/Rast

LMP2

  • #47 KCMG Oreca 05 – Howson/Lapierre/Bradley
  • #26 G-Drive Racing Ligier JS P2 –Bird/Rusinov/Canal
  • #48 Murphy Prototypes Oreca 03R – Nissan – Chandhok/Patterson/Berthon

LM GTE Pro

  • #51 AF Corse – Vilander/Bruni/Fisichella
  • #64 Corvette Racing – Milner/Gavin/Taylor
  • #91 Porsche Team Manthey Porsche 911 RSR – Lietz/Christensen/Bergmeister

LM GTE Am

  • #98 Aston Martin Racing V8 – Dalla Lana/Lauda/Lamy
  • #72 SMP Racing Ferrari 458 Italia – Shaytar/Bertolini/Basov
  • #77 Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR – Dempsey/Long/Seefried

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