LIVE: 2016 24 Hours of Le Mans – Part 2


For the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans, The Checkered Flag will have both hourly reports and a liveblog, keeping you updated for the entire 24 hours.

This page will automatically update with all of the latest news and images from Circuit de la Sarthe. If you want to read about the first 12 hours click here.

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:03

Hello and welcome to the second part of The Checkered Flag’s coverage of the 84th 24 Hours of Le Mans! We have less than 12 hours to go!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:04

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:05

As the second lap round the clock face begins, the leaders are –

LMP1: #6 Toyota Gazoo Racing, Kamui Kobayashi
LMP2: #36 Signatech Alpine, Gustavo Menezes
GTE Pro: #82 Risi Competizione, Matteo Malucelli
GTE Am: #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing, Khaled Al Qubaisi
Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:07

A more detailed class leader list thanks to Paul Hensby:

LMP1
1) #6 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Kobayashi
2) #2 Porsche Team – Dumas
3) #5 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Davidson

LMP2
1) #36 Signatech Alpine – Menezes
2) #46 Thiriet by TDS Racing – Hirakawa
3) #26 G-Drive Racing – Stevens

LMGTE PRO
1) #82 Risi Competizione – Malucelli
2) #69 Ford Chip Ganassi – Briscoe
3) #68 Ford Chip Ganassi – Hand

LMGTE AM
1) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing – Al Qubaisi
2) #62 Scuderia Corsa – Bell
3) #61 Clearwater Racing – Sawa

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:10

#82 Risi and the #68 and #69 Ford GTs have all pitted and come out near enough on top of each other after their scheduled stops

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:14

#2 Porsche is squeezing the lead down a touch to the #6 Toyota as the Ford GT almost has a Larbre Corvette released right into its path on pitlane

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:16

Jonny Adam is on a charge, he’s in sixth in the Aston Martin and is on the back of the #64 Corvette Racing C7.R of Jordan Taylor.

He’s not sixth much longer though as Adam goes down the inside at Indianapolis
Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:17

Also hearing that the #92 has the garage door down and that car has now retired

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:23

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:26

The #5 Toyota pits now, Davidson was third before that, time will tell as to whether he loses a place or not

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:27

It would appear he hasn’t, he’s got a decent gap to the car behind

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:28

The #26 G-Drive Oreca has been given a 1min stop/go penalty for speeding in a slow zone. Will Stevens is in that at the moment in second place

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:32

Townsend Bell leads the GTE Am class in the Scuderia Corsa Ferrari, he has 13 seconds over the #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing Porsche. Bell has even done two more pitstops as well goodshow

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:34

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:38

#6 makes its 14th pitstop so that means the Dumas #2 Porsche has inherited the lead, but not for long as that car also pits for its 15th stop

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:42

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:46

Decent battle for 15th in LMP2 as Sir Chris of Hoy loses a place to Filipe Albuquerque in the RGR By Morand Ligier-Nissan

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:49

Oliver Jarvis pits from fourth in the #8 Audi he’s extending his run to a triple stint

Joe Hudson June 19, 201602:50

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:00

We’re at the end of another hour! Your leaders are –

LMP1
#6 Toyota (Kobayashi)
#2 Porsche (Lieb) +42.099
#5 Toyota (Davidson) +1:16.035
LMP2
#36 Signatech Alpine – Menezes
#46 Thiriet by TDS Racing – Hirakawa

#26 G-Drive Racing – Stevens


GTE Pro

#82 Risi Competizione – Malucelli
#69 Ford Chip Ganassi – Briscoe
#68 Ford Chip Ganassi – Hand

GTE Am

#62 Scuderia Corsa – Bell
#88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing – Al Qubaisi
#61 Clearwater Racing – Sawa
Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:03

The #63 Corvette is in the garage at the moment, looks like they’re going for brake change

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:05

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:14

The #1 Porsche pits now and Mark Webber is folding himself into the 919 Hybrid

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:21

Lead Toyota is in the pits now, looks like there has been a tyre rub against the front left bodywork

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:26

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:28

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:30

The #2 Porsche has taken the lead, Lieb leads with Kobayashi relegated down to 2nd

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:32

Rebellion has stopped out on track, it’s #13 that has stopped on the entrance to the second chicane on the Mulsanne

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:35

The Rebellion has still not got going again, that was in sixth before it stopped. They have three laps over the car behind, which is the LMP2 leader.

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:37

Marshals are pushing the Rebellion into a gap in the barriers now

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:39

The #69 is in from second in GTE Pro, looks like a brake disc/rotor change for that car

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:40

Talking about the GTE classes, the #82 Risi Competizione still leads in GTE Pro and Townsend Bell’s Scuderia Corsa Ferrari 458 Italia leads in GTE Am

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:41

In LMP2, Nicolas Lapierre leads in the Signatech Alpine with Ryo Hirakawa’s Thiriet by TDS Racing Oreca in second.

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:41

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:45

Bloody hell Marc Lieb almost gets knocked out by Fisichella’s Ferrari. Lieb was very unsure whether he wanted to rejoin the circuit or not

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:46

Aston Martin is up to third in GTE Pro, Darren Turner the man pedalling that beast

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:46

There’s also a yellow flag at Mulsanne Corner, not sure what for though…

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:47

It was for the #12! That spun and continued at that corner

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:48

An out of schedule pitstop for Lieb, a lap or two ago, has meant that it is currently a Toyota 1-2 with Kobayashi leading Davidson

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:53

The #12 Rebellion is back in the pits now, mechanics are swarming the car looking for what the issue is

Joe Hudson June 19, 201603:54

Treluyer overshoots the final corner, he makes a trip through the gravel and just avoids the wall. Good job that man

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:03

The double-figure hours have become single figures as we have less than 10 hours to go! Your leaders at the end of hour 14 are –

LMP1
1) #6 Toyota (Kobayashi)
2) #5 Toyota (Davidson) +14.036
3) #2 Porsche (Lieb) +58.563
LMP2
1) #36 Signatech Alpine (Lapierre)
2) #46 Thiriet By TDS Racing (Hirakawa) +1 Lap
3) #26 G-Drive Racing (Stevens) +1:55.872
GTE Pro
1) #82 Risi Competizione (Fisichella)
2) #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (Hand) +1:15.963
3) #69 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (Dixon) +1 Lap
GTE Am
1) #62 Scuderia Corsa
2) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing
3) #61 Clearwater Racing
Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:04

Nelson Piquet sounds rejected on Radio Le Mans, the clutch on the #12 Rebellion needs to be changed

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:05

The #5 Toyota is in the pits now, Anthony Davidson gets out from 2nd place and Kazuki Nakajima gets in.

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:09

The #67 of Marino Franchitti gets tagged by the #40 Krohn Racing Ligier of Niclas Jonsson who tries to dive down the inside at the Forest Esses

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:12

The leading #6 Toyota has come into the pits now and Kamui Kobayashi hands the car over to Stephane Sarrazin

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:16

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:23

The #8 Audi has come in and out of the pits, he’s sitting all by himself in fourth places, two laps behind third and 12 laps clear of fifth

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:30

Porsche #2 has come into the pits from the lead and Lapierre pits from the lead of LMP2 in the Signatech Alpine

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:40

GTE Pro still sees the Risi Ferrari lead from the two Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA Ford GTs with Jeff Segal just pitting from the lead of GTE Am with #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Porsche in 2nd place

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:50

Marc Lieb is closing in on Kazuki Nakajima for 2nd in class, but at the moment he seems to be slowing his closing rate a touch

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:50

Joe Hudson June 19, 201604:54

The night is definitely lifting now, that sky is looking more blue than black now.

As I type that, the #5 has come into the pits and is back out again
Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:03

Another hour is done – your leaders are:

LMP1
1) #6 Toyota (Sarrazin)
2) #2 Porsche (Lieb)
3) #5 Toyota (Nakajima)
LMP2
1) #36 Signatech Alpine (Lapierre)
2) #46 Thiriet By TDS Racing (Thiriet)
3) #26 G-Drive Racing (Rusinov)
GTE Pro
1) #82 Risi Competizione (Fisichella)
2) #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (Bourdais)
3) #69 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (Dixon)
GTE Am
1) #62 Scuderia Corsa
2) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing
3) #83 AF Corse
Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:03

While I was typing all this, Leo Roussel has found himself in the gravel at Mulsanne Corner in the Pegasus Morgan-Nissan

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:08

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:10

Marc Lieb also takes over the lead now in the #2 Porsche but I think he owes a pitstop compared to the #6 Toyota of Sarrazin

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:13

The #36 Alpine has come in for the lead of LMP2, Lapierre has got out and Richelmi has jumped in

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:20

The #38 Gibson of G-Drive Racing hit the wall relatively hard at the Ford Chicane. The front left bodywork is definitely knackered and there is quite a bit of suspension damage

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:29

The #98 GTE Am Aston Martin of Paul Dalla Lana stopped off line in the middle of the Mulsanne Corner, he’s managed to get it going again though

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:43

The Signatech Alpine still leads in LMP2 with the Thiriet Oreca behind

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:47

Massve shunt for the #64 Corvette up at the Dunlop Curves, he seems to lose it under braking and he’s really hit the tyre barriers, they’ve gone everywhere

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:48

It was Tommy Milner in that car, I wonder how the officials will deal with this? It seems too severe just for slow zones

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:51

It’s being covered under slow zones for now, good work by the marshals to deal with that

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:52

The #6 Toyota and the #2 Porsche have both pitted now, using those slow zones so they don’t lose as much time

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:53

Neel Jani has jumped in that Porsche as well, a relatively short stint for Romain Dumas

Joe Hudson June 19, 201605:57

It’s still a Toyota 1-2 as it has been on and off for many hours now, the Porsches must roll the dice here surely to get decisively ahead of them?

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:01

We’re closing in on a WEC distance race now, with less than eight hours to go. Leaders are:

LMP1
1) #6 Toyota (Sarrazin)
2) #5 Toyota (Nakajima)
3) #2 Porsche (Jani)
LMP2
1) #36 Signatech Alpine (Richelmi)
2) #46 Thiriet By TDS Racing (Thiriet)
3) #26 G-Drive Racing (Rusinov)
GTE Pro
1) #82 Risi Competizione (Vilander)
2) #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (Bourdais)
3) #69 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (Dixon)
GTE Am
1) #62 Scuderia Corsa (Segal)
2) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing (Heinemeier Hansson)
3) #83 AF Corse (Collard)
Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:06

Marshals and ACO officials doing a great job getting the tyres back together

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:07

There’s been a crash for the #35 Baxi DC Racing Alpine! He straight lines the first chicane and can’t get the car turned to avoid the concrete barrier

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:08

It’s Nelson Panciatici in the wall there

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:15

The slow zone has been lifted for the #35 at the Forza Chicane, its been lifted behind the wall and Panciatici is trying to get back but the marshals aren’t letting him depart at the moment

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:16

As I type that, Panciatici has got out the car, he’s not gone more than 100m away though so technically hasn’t retired the car yet

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:17

The ByKolles car is also on fire – who ordered an LMP1 BBQ?

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:18

Marshals are on the scene with extinguishers. The fire seems to be coming from behind the rear-right wheel

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:25

Oh bother, the Thiriet by TDS Oreca has become stranded in the gravel at Mulsanne Corner, he came through the corner backwards but managed to avoid the wall

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:26

Oh bother Pt2. Ed Brown has parked the ESM Ligier in the gravel at Tertre Rouge.

That all means SAFETY CAR INTERVENTION!
Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:29

Class leading #36 Signatech Alpine is in the pits now as well its being pushed back into the garage!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:30

The Thiriet car is driving back to the pits now, it seems undamaged apart from bodywork damage

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:34

The Murphy Prototypes car has even managed to spin under the safety car, what have they been feeding these LMP2s?

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:43

The Thiriet car had a new nose stuck on it and went to leave but has ground to a halt just near pit exit. Mechanics have now pushed that back down pit road

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:48

SAFETY CAR IS IN NOW!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:53

Connor Jackson June 19, 201606:58

After 17 Hours of Racing the Top 3 are split by 4 seconds

Joe Hudson June 19, 201606:59

Your leaders with only 7 hours left of the race:

LMP1
1) #5 Toyota (Buemi)
2) #6 Toyota (Conway)
3) #2 Porsche (Jani)
LMP2
1) #36 Signatech Alpine (Richelmi)
2) #26 G-Drive Racing (Rast)
3) #37 SMP Racing (Ladygin)
GTE Pro
1) #82 Risi Competizione (Vilander)
2) #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (Bourdais)
3) #69 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA (Westbrook)
GTE Am
1) #62 Scuderia Corsa (Sweedler)
2) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing (Heinemeier Hansson)
3) #83 AF Corse (Collard)
Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:01

The two Toyota’s #5 and then #6 are running nose to tail as they scythe through the traffic with the #2 Porsche chasing

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:02

It’s a Dry and Clear morning in Le Mans as the Sun is breaking through the clouds

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:03

The Toyota Duo has caught the #1 Porsche who is giving them a hard time to the displeasure of the racing director

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:07

In GT Pro the #68 Ford Chip Ganassi is now only 7 seconds behind the #82 Risi Competizione as they both pit from the lead

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:10

#82 Ferrari 488 kept the lead as a driver change sees Matteo Malucelli enter the car

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:11

While the #68 Ford GT sees Dirk Muller jump into the car

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:14

Sebastien Buemi in the #5 Toyota TS050 cannot afford to relax as the #2 Porsche driven by Neel Jani is still only 5 seconds behind. The gap is opening slightly.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:18

The #62 Scuderia Corsa now has a 3 minute gap to the #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing in GT Am

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:21

The #46 Thiriet by TDS Racing looks to be officially retired now

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:27

The LMP2 leader was quickly in and out with just fuel being taken on. The #36 Signatech Alpine maintains its 1 lap gap.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:29

While the gap between the #2 and the #6 ahead remains consistent at 3 seconds. The #5 meanwhile runs off in front

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:32

In LMP1, the #6 Toyota TS050 pits from second as the #5 sets a Personal Best

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:37

Drive Through Penalty for the #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA car for keeping the engine running during refuelling

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:38

The #68 was second in GT Pro and will severely hinder their battle for the win

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:42

There’s a Ferrari leading both GT Pro and Am as the #82 Risi Competizione and #82 Scuderia Corsa lead their classes respectively

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:44

The #2 Porsche finally makes its pitstop gifting the lead back to the Toyota’s. Sadly the gap has now grown to the #6 in second place, Marc Leib emerges in third.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:49

With the car getting lighter the #8 Audi Sport Team Joest set a personal best lap before pitting. They remain fourth

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:52

Bill Sweedler stays in the #62 Scuderia Corsa after a splash and dash pit stop from the GT Am lead.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:54

After closing up earlier, the #2 Porsche has fallen back to 53 seconds behind the second place #6 Toyota GAZOO Racing

Connor Jackson June 19, 201607:57

In LMP2, the #42 Strakka Racing is now only 20 seconds behind the #37 SMP Racing in third

Connor Jackson June 19, 201608:04

With 3/4 of the Race complete, Toyota still dominate to the surprise of many

LMP1;
1) #5 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Buemi
2) #6 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Conway
3) #2 Porsche Team – Leib

LMP2;
1) #36 Signatech Alpine – Richelmi
2) #26 G-Drive Racing – Rast
3) #37 SMP Racing – Shaytar

GT Pro;
1) #82 Risi Competizione – Malucelli
2) #68 Ford Chip Ganassi – Muller
3) #69 Ford Chip Ganassi – Westbrook

GT Am;
1) #62 Scuderia Corsa – Sweedler
2) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton – Al Qubaisi
3) #83 AF Corse – Perrodo

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:05

18 hours in, and we have three cars still in with a genuine chance of outright victory, with the #5 Toyota ahead of the sister #6, with the #2 Porsche still in with a shout!

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:07

The LMP2 class leading Signatech Alpine is in the pit lane. Monegasque driver Stephane Richelmi is currently behind the wheel.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:08

The #42 Strakka Racing machine is on a charge as it hunts down third position, Jonny Kane was four seconds faster on that last lap than Victor Shaytar and SMP Racing, the gap now below ten seconds.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:10

There is a spin for the #31 Extreme Speed Motorsports entry at the Porsche Curves after being forced wide by an Audi who was lapping them. Chris Cumming is currently behind the wheel.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:11

Incidentally Gustavo Menezes took over the Signatech Alpine from Richelmi in that last pit stop.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:17

The race long battle between Ferrari and Ford in LMGTE Pro is continuing, with the #51 Risi Competizione leading the #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing by around half a minute.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:18

The #7 Audi is back in the pits and has been wheeled into the garage for more work to be done on the car. This car is already twelve laps behind the leaders and this latest pit visit will see them lose even more time.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:22

The #42 Strakka has caught and passed the #37 SMP Racing car for third in LMP2

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:23

Both the #42 and the #37 are now in the pits for a pit stop. As is the race leading #5 Toyota.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:27

The #2 Porsche of Marc Lieb is in the pits from the lead, having taken over the lead when the #5 Toyota had pitted.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:29

The #50 Larbre Competition Corvette is in the gravel at the Porsche Curves after Yutaka Yamagishi lost control and hit the wall.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:30

And we have a slow zone now as they look to recover the #50.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:31

The battle for second in LMP1 is on again, the #6 Toyota is just a handful of seconds ahead of the #2 Porsche.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:36

Whether it’s traffic or just being compromised more by the slow zone, or its genuinely on pace, the #6 Toyota has just pulled the gap out to the #2 Porsche by two seconds on that past lap.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:40

The LMGTE Pro lead battle now separated by under 16 seconds, the #82 Risi Competizione ahead of the #68 Ford GT.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:46

The #49 Michael Shank Racing has hit the #40 Krohn Racing entry at the chicane, with both continuing.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:48

Still just over four seconds separate the second placed #6 Toyota and the third placed #2 Porsche.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:49

Dirk Muller and his #68 Ford GT is still closing the gap in LMGTE Pro to the Matteo Malucelli #82 Risi Competizione. The gap is now under ten seconds.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:51

The LMGTE AM class leading #62 Scuderia Corsa has just pitted, Townsend Bell is currently behind the wheel of the Ferrari 458 Italia.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:53

But what a disappointing day for Porsche in the LMGTE Pro class. The #77 Dempsey-Proton Racing car is the only remaining Pro car on track with the retirements for the #92 and #91, but is eighth in class and eleven laps off the pace of the #82 Risi Competizione class leaders.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:56

We are close to seeing the conclusion of the eighteenth hour of running, just the five and a bit to go!

Paul Hensby June 19, 201608:59

Porsche enjoying the battle with Toyota…

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:04

We’ve completed another hour… here are the top three in each class!

LMP1
1) #5 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Buemi – 300 Laps
2) #6 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Conway
3) #2 Porsche Team – Lieb

LMP2
1) #36 Signatech Alpine – Menezes – 279 Laps
2) #26 G-Drive Racing – Rast
3) #42 Strakka Racing – Kane

LMGTE Pro
1) #82 Risi Competizione – Malucelli – 266 Laps
2) #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing – Hand
3) #69 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing – Briscoe

LMGTE Am
1) #62 Scuderia Corsa – Bell – 259 Laps
2) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing – Al Qubaisi
3) #83 AF Corse – Perrodo

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:05

As you can see Joey Hand has taken over from Dirk Muller in the #68 Ford GT as they battle for LMGTE Pro class honours.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:06

The #6 Toyota and the #2 Audi are almost nose to tail as they continue their battle for second place.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:11

The #6 Toyota is in pit lane for a service and a driver change. Kamui Kobayashi has taken over and has fresh tyres to push with.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:13

The #5 Toyota is also heading pit lane, with Anthony Davidson set to take over from Sebastien Buemi.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:19

We have a lead change! Marc Lieb pitted just for fuel in the #2 Porsche and jumped ahead of the #5 Toyota by six seconds.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:20

Just 21 seconds cover the #2 Porsche from the third placed #6 Toyota, with a grandstand finish in prospect!

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:22

The battle for LMGTE Pro is on as well, the #82 Risi Competizione and the #68 Ford GT less than four seconds apart with the latter only a few tenths of a second faster on that last lap.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:23

Correction – the Ford gained 2.7 seconds on that last lap! The Ferrari is under attack!

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:27

The gap now down to 1.991 seconds between the #82 and #68.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:29

Less than four seconds covers the #2 Porsche at the front of the field from the #6 Toyota, with Anthony Davidson six-tenths faster on that last lap with his fresher tyres.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:29

The two LMGTE Pro leaders are now together on track, the battle has been joined!

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:30

The LMP1 and GTE Pro battles look set to go on and on until the chequered flag, the two having gone too-and-fro all race long so far.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:31

The Signatech Alpine seems to have it all their own way at the head of LMP2, there is now more than a lap between them and the #26 G-Drive Racing in second.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:32

Likewise, the #62 Scuderia Corsa is comfortably leading GTE AM from the #88 Porsche.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:33

The #68 of Joey Hand now leads the LMGTE Pro class after out-dragging the #82 Risi Competizione.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:33

Anthony Davidson is on a charge, with the Brit again three-tenths faster than Marc Lieb on that last lap.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:36

The two race leaders now in the same shot down the Mulsanne Straight. Anthony Davidson again three-tenths faster on that last lap, but both him and Marc Lieb are pushing extremely hard.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:39

Just two-tenths faster for Davidson this time around, the lead around 3.2 seconds in favour of the #2 Porsche.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:42

The #8 Audi is slow on track, crawling back to the pits. It is now falling a further lap behind the race leaders as they flash passed them once more

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:43

The #8 has made it back to the pits and has been pulled into the garage. More problems for the Audi team that fall further out of contention for the race win.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:44

Six tenths faster for the #5 Toyota this time around, the gap now only 2.5 seconds to the #2 Porsche at the front. Anthony Davidson is on a charge!

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:45

The #26 G-Drive Racing Oreca now back on the same lap as the LMP2 class leaders in the #36 Signatech Alpine, albeit almost three minutes separate Gustavo Menezes from Will Stevens.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:47

Despite having closed the gap and passed the #82 Risi Competizione for the lead of LMGTE Pro, the #68 Ford GT of Joey Hand cannot pull away from the Ferrari, just one second now separate the two cars.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:50

The lead gap in LMP1 is back over three seconds… Davidson lost eight-tenths of a second that time around

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:51

Saying that… the gap has just closed dramatically… less than 1.3 seconds now between the #2 Porsche and the #5 Toyota.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:52

It is so good to see two manufacturers having a great fight for overall honours. If only Audi had been reliable…

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:53

It’s a glorious day for racing at Le Mans, the sun is shining and the on-track battles are thrilling! Can anything beat this?!

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:54

There is a change for the lead! Anthony Davidson has just passed Marc Lieb down towards the end of the Mulsanne Straight. The #5 Toyota LEADS!

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:57

The #8 Audi is still in the pits, they are now six laps down and dropping away.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:58

Mark Patterson has hit the barriers at the first chicane down the Mulsanne Straight in the #57 Team AAI Corvette.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201609:59

The #2 Porsche hits pit lane for its 25th pit stop of the race. Marc Lieb looking like he’s staying in the car, and just fuel for the German.

Paul Hensby June 19, 201610:02

That’s another hour in the books, and here is the run down on the top three in each class with four hours to go!

LMP1
1) #5 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Davidson – 317 Laps
2) #2 Porsche Team – Lieb
3) #6 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Kobayashi

LMP2
1) #36 Signatech Alpine – Menezes – 295 Laps
2) #26 G-Drive Racing – Stevens
3) #37 SMP Racing – Petrov

LMGTE Pro
1) #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing – Hand – 281 Laps
2) #82 Risi Competizione – Vilander
3) #69 Ford Chip Ganassi Racing – Briscoe

LMGTE Am
1) #62 Scuderia Corsa – Bell – 273 Laps
2) #83 AF Corse – Aguas
3) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing – Long

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:02

There’s a slow zone along the Mulsanne Straight to clear up the #57 Corvette

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:05

The top three are once again split by only a few seconds as the #5 Toyota of Davidson pits. Coming back out in the lead

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:06

Leib looks like he’s preparing for a quadruple stint

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:09

The eternal Ford vs Ferrari battle isn’t going away as #68 Joey Hand holds a 7 second lead over Toni Vilander in the #82 Risi Competizione

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:10

The #49 Michael Shank Racing outfit has a drive through penalty.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:12

The #8 Audi has now been in the pits for 30 minutes with no sign of it getting back on track any time soon.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:15

Meanwhile in LMP2; the leader; Stephane Richelmi in the #36 Signatech Alpine makes its 28th pit stop, one less than the G-Drive behind it

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:18

The Signatech built a large lead thanks to an incredible overnight stint from Gustavo Menezes

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:20

The #6 driven by Kobayashi spun at the Porsche curves. He was lucky not to beach it in the gravel and continues

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:25

The #55 AF Corse appears to have had a misfire

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:27

As for the CDNT entry, the #84 SRT41 is back out the pits in 43rd overall

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:28

Big Crash for the #44 Manor Oreca-05 Entry

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:30

They went off at Indianapolis, recovered but had the body work ripped off on the way towards the Porsche curves

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:31

With no steering, Matt Rao plowed into the wall. A slow zone has been implemented

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:37

From third in GT Pro; Ryan Briscoe pits his #69 Ford GT with team mate #67 also in.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:39

Back in GT Am, Ferrari cars now cover three of the top four places with Towsend Bell’s #62 Scuderia Corsa leading by a lap over the #88 Porsche 911 RSR

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:40

The #44 Manor is now being towed back to the pits.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:41

A lot of damage has now been spotted on the side of Kobayashi’s #6 Toyota after his spin earlier.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:42

It could involve him pitting for a number of laps, losing any chance of victory

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:44

With the Risi Competizione of Munemann now under 3 seconds behind the leader, Ford look to counter

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:46

#95 Aston Martin Racing has tyre issues. It’s limping back to the pits

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:48

Disaster for the #82 Risi Competizione. It’s spun at Karting flicking gravel onto the racing line. They’re forced to pit

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:50

The #7 Audi finally looks ready to come back out of the pits. Treluyer will take over

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:53

The #6 Toyota and the #2 Porsche are both in. The former needs significant body work repair

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:55

Neel Jani takes over the #2 Porsche Team car as the #5 Toyota pits.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201610:57

Back in GT Pro, Joey Hand pits the #68 Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA as he stays in the car for a triple stint

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:00

The #6 Toyota TS050 has still got the tape flapping on the side of the car. Fortunately, the floor has been reattachted

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:01

The #98 Aston Martin has stopped just after the pit lane exit. It’s not going anywhere

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:08

LMP1;
1) #5 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Davidson
2) #2 Porsche Team – Jani
3) #6 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Sarrazin

LMP2;
1) #36 Signatech Alpine – Richelmi
2) #26 G-Drive Racing – Stevens
3) #37 SMP Racing – Shaytar

GT Pro
1) #68 Chip Ganassi Racing – Hand
2) #82 Risi Competizione – Vilander
3) #69 Chip Ganassi Racing – Briscoe

GT Am
1) #62 Scuderia Corsa – Bell
2) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton – Long
3) #83 AF Corse – Aguas

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:09

The #98 Aston Martin Racing car that was stopped at the Dunlop curves caused a slow zone. It moved 20ft before failing once again

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:10

With the #82 Risi damaged, it looks like Ford might take an easy victory in GT Pro, but there’s still 3 hours to go

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:12

Davidson is shouting down the radio after his team failed to give him enough warning about an impending slow zone

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:13

Meanwhile his #6 Toyota GAZOO Racing team mate is in the Garage. Losing it’s chance of victory

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:15

With the Audi’s a number of laps down, the Toyota team take a thorough look at the damage

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:17

LMP2 has calmed down with the #36 Signatech Alpine an entire lap in front, looking comfortable for the win

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:20

The #1 Porsche with Mark Webber has now passed all the GT Pro cars as he attempts to salvage a top 10 finish. Currently 17th

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:22

Despite their off, #82 Risi Competizione is still only 40 seconds behind the #68 Ford GT driven by the consistent Joey Hand

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:24

Jani’s last lap in the #2 Porsche was 2 seconds slower than the #5 Toyota. Can the German line up fight back

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:32

While they may be running second in GT Am the #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton has not been able to race on the same level as the Ferrari’s around him, Aguas is gradually dropping back

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:34

The #6 Toyota is continuing to have problems after they exited the pits. They’re still third, but four laps down.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:39

Despite their issues earlier the #95 and #97 Aston Martin Racing will be on for a strong result with the WEC seasonal Ferrari’s behind them

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:41

The #2 Porsche is remaining a minute behind the #5 Toyota, but is the first to pit

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:42

A quick splash and dash keeps the #2 within contention

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:43

Christina Nielsen in the #60 Formula Racing car has been beset with more bad luck as they are foced to serve another drive through

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:46

The #5 Toyota spent 20 seconds longer in the pits, giving the advantage back to the #2 Porsche. He’s about 35 seconds behind

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:48

That extra time was because of a driver change. Nakajima is now in the car

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:53

The #83 AF Corse has finally made its way back to second after the #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing car was forced to pit

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:55

Meanwhile, the leading GT Am of #62 Scuderia Corse swap drivers with Jeffrey Segal now on track to take it to the finish

Connor Jackson June 19, 201611:59

The LMP1 Porsche engineer is rumoured to have met with the steward.

Connor Jackson June 19, 201612:00

In LMP2; the second place G-Drive has unlapped himself from Richelmi, the leader

Connor Jackson June 19, 201612:04

LMP1
1) #5 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Nakajima

2) #2 Porsche Team – Jani
3) #6 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Sarrazin

LMP2
1) #36 Signatech Alpine – Richelmi
2) #26 G-Drive Racing – Rusinov
3) #37 SMP Racing – Petrov

GT Pro
1) #68 Chip Ganassi Racing – Muller
2) #82 Risi Competizione – Fisichella
3) #69 Chip Ganassi Racing – Dixon

GT Am
1) #62 Scuderia Corse – Segal
2) #83 AF Corse – Collard
3) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton – Heinemeier Hansen

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:06

We’re closing in on the end of the race now, will we see any gambles as people look to position themselves as the minutes take down – after all there are less than 120 now!

Connor Jackson June 19, 201612:06

Petrov has taken over in the #37 SMP Racing after Shaytar’s marathon stint

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:10

The lead at the top of the LMP1 class is down to less than 30 seconds now as Neel Jani look to close in on Kazuki Nakajima’s Toyota

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:14

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:17

The LMP2 leader is into the pits now, with Stephane Richelmi continuing in the Signatech Alpine

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:18

Tell a lie, Nicolas Lapierre is in the #36 Signatech Alpine now

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:22

A note on the Garage 56 entry – Christophe Tinseau is in the SRT41 by Oak Racing Morgan-Nissan now, they’re 39th overall!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:27

Dirk Muller still leads in GTE Pro and he’s got an LMP2 car between himself and Giancarlo Fisichella in the Risi Ferrari

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:27

The Pegasus Racing machine has been given a drive-through penalty for speeding in the pitlane

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:36

We have a yellow flag out on circuit! The slow zones will be coming into play shortly at the Mulsanne Corner

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:38

The pit lane is becoming very active now with those slow zones. RLM’s Shea Adam reports that Rene Rast has been shoved into the car a bit before he expected!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:42

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:43

Oh dear, the Pegasus car is now on fire. Fair to say they’ve had a challenging race.

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:46

Eurosport are now showing a replay of every time the Pegasus car has been in the gravel. It’s been a lot of times.

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:51

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:54

The lead at the head of LMP1 is still 30 secondsish. The Signatech Alpine has a lap in hand over the G-Drive Oreca

Joe Hudson June 19, 201612:59

We’re closing in on the final hour so for the penultimate time, here are your class leaders –

LMP1
1) #5 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Nakajima

2) #2 Porsche Team – Jani

3) #6 Toyota GAZOO Racing – Sarrazin

LMP2

1) #36 Signatech Alpine – Richelmi

2) #26 G-Drive Racing – Rusinov

3) #37 SMP Racing – Petrov

GTE Pro

1) #68 Chip Ganassi Racing – Muller

2) #82 Risi Competizione – Fisichella

3) #69 Chip Ganassi Racing – Dixon

GTE Am

1) #62 Scuderia Corse – Segal

2) #83 AF Corse – Collard

3) #88 Abu Dhabi-Proton – Heinemeier Hansen

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:02

As I’ve posted that, slow zones have been confirmed as the Murphy Prototypes LMP2 beached itself in the gravel

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:08

Frederic Sausset is out of his overalls and in the garage watching his car continuing to lap. A team whose main driver has no arms or legs is currently running 39th overall – absolute top respect!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:12

2nd place in GTE Pro, the Risi Competizione Ferrari, has come in for fuel and new tyres as has Scott Dixon’s #69 Ford GT

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:17

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:19

GTE Pro leader pits for fuel only, Dirk Muller is driving that still

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:20

Neel Jani has pitted now, this stop is for fuel only!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:22

The Toyota of Kazuki Nakajima has been called in to the pits now! They need to make this one a clean one!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:23

Frederic Sausset is also going back in the CDNT class Morgan-Nissan! This will be a great finish for him!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:24

Nakajima is in and out no issue!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:25

Neel Jani is absolutely on it, not seen him go faster the whole race!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:26

Battle for GTE Am is heating up as well, David Heinemeier Hansson could be losing his second place as Emmanuel Collard is closing in on the Abu Dhabi-Proton Racing Porsche

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:27

The Ferrari has got through now! He’s in second place and with a 2 minute gap to Jeff Segal to make up for the class lead!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:35

Nicolas Lapierre comes in and out for fuel and a visor tear-off before he goes back into the lead of LMP2

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:39

Fisichella has been called into the pits, he’s been flagged for an issue with the leader lights on the side of his car. Bloody unfair if you ask me, he’s in 2nd at the moment and would no doubt lose that if he went into the pits

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:40

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:43

The people hovering around the Toyota pits are very nervous as we approach the final 15 minutes of the race

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:48

Emmanuel Collard pits the GTE Am AF Corse machine from 2nd place, just a splash of fuel to get to the end maybe?

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:50

The #2 is coming in for new tyres! That Porsche must have an issue?

David Heinemeier Hansson has also pitted for more fuel from third in GTE Am
Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:54

Risi Competizione have told RLM that they will be staying out and not bringing the car in for their penalty/told to come in for leader light issues

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:54

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:55

The #5 is slowing on the way to Indianapolis! What’s he doing? Neel Jani is absolutely flying

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:58

The #5 has stopped!!! It was going so well and they’ve had an issue! They only needed one more lap and now the Porsche only needs to complete one more lap to claim another Le Mans victory!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201613:58

The car has been restarted now but it hasn’t got going again!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201614:00

Hugues de Chaunac doesn’t believe his eyes in the Toyota Gazoo Racing pit

Joe Hudson June 19, 201614:00

The car is finally going again, Nakajima has reported that he has no power!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201614:01

PORSCHE WIN LE MANS!!!! NEEL JANI DOES THE BUSINESS ON THE LAST LAP AS TOYOTA HIT POWER ISSUES!!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201614:04

Signatech Alpine have won in LMP2! Niclas Lapierre has won 2 races in a row in the LMP2 class! Joey Hand crosses the line first for Ford Chip Ganassi Team USA and Scuderia Corsa has won in GTE Am after a brilliant display in that class!

Joe Hudson June 19, 201614:12

Poor Nakajima looks broken coming out of that car