2015 24 Hours of Le Mans: Hour 16 Update – Porsche back in control as problems hit Audi


With the sun rising the story at the front of the race was pretty much the same, the #19 Porsche 919 Hybrid was being chased down by the #7 Audi R18 e-tron quattro.

In LMP2 the #26 G-Drive Racing Ligier JS P2, #48 Murphy Prototypes Oreca 03R and the #34 OAK Racing Ligier JS P2 all took their pitstops without incident as the attention turned to the weather and if it would remain dry.

With the battle at the front between Porsche and Audi you could be forgiven to think that there was only 2 manufacturers in the class, but with the exception of one Nissan there was stil seven other LMP1 cars running as Earl Bamber extended his lead at the front before pitting to hand over to F1 driver Nico Hulkenberg; With the #19 Porsche in the pits, the #7 Audi would take the lead.

The #99 Aston Martin would finally make its return to track after the earlier collision with the TDS LMP2 car, eleven laps down but still running.

It wouldn’t be long before Treluyer would pit to hand over the #7 Audi over to Marcel Fassler; With the pit stop out of the way the gap between the lead Porsche and the #7 Audi was back to 67 seconds.

Credit: Drew Gibson
2015 World Endurance Championship.
Round 3, Le Mans 24 Hours.
Le Mans, France.
7th – 15th June 2015
Photo: Drew Gibson

The #12 Rebellion driven by Nicolas Prost would head straight on at Indianapolis in to the gravel trap, bringing out a slow zone while he was recovered.

The lead in the GTE Am class would be handde over to the SMP Ferrari when Pedro Lamy pitted the leading Aston Martin, while in the GTE Pro class the #51 AF Corse Ferrari kept their lead over the #64 Corvette following a pitstop.

Back at the front and Hulkenberg was extending his lead, now up to 82.928 seconds while Lucas Di Grassi pitted the #8 Audi to hand over driving duties to Oliver Jarvis. Fassler would try to push the Audi to close in on the lead Porsche but the pace was too much, the lead extended to 90.577 seconds.

As the hour ended there were problems for the #7 Audi as part of the rear bodywork flew off through Porsche Curves. A lengthly stop would see the hard work undone as the car tumbled down the times to fifth place.

Top 3 positions in each class after Hour 16 of the 83rd 24 Hours of Le Mans

LMP1

  • #19 Porsche 919 Hybrid – Hulkenberg/Bamber/Tandy
  • #9 Audi R18 e-tron quattro – Albuquerque/Bonanomi/Rast
  • #17 Porsche 919 Hybrid – Bernhard/Webber/Hartley

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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