American Le Mans Series

2013 12 Hours Of Sebring: Hour 7 Update

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Benoit Treluyer retook the lead for the #1 Audi R18 e-tron quattro team after Tom Kristensen pitted from the lead in the sister #2 car.

However, while Treluyer continued on apparently unaffected the undertray of the #1 car was visibly flapping – the sound audible in the car – with a member of the Audi Sport Team Joest team tasked with assessing the situation on Treluyer’s stop by lying on the floor. Despite this Treluyer kept the lead after his own stop, actually pulling away from Kristensen once he returned to the track.

Elsewhere in P1 Klaus Graf was the latest driver to receive a one minute stop-go penalty for avoidable contact, Graf rear-ending David Cheng out of the PC lead in the PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports under braking. Both cars were able to continue with only minor damage, though Cheng did lose the lead to Kyle Marcelli of BAR1 Motorsports.

In P2 the situation remained stable, the five cars in the class separated by incident and accident throughout the race allowing the two Level 5 Motorsports cars to maintain first and second in class. Similarly, habing led at the end of the previous hour the JDX Racing #11 continues to lead in GTC.

It was all change in GT because of the sequence of pitstops towards the end of the hour. Corvette Racing’s helped Richard Westbrook to pass John Edwards of BMW Team RLL for what was then second place in class behing Olivier Beretta in the Risi Competizione Ferrari.

Beretta pitted on the following lap, emerging back on track between Westbrook and Edwards, meaning the Corvette team had entirely recovered from the electrical dashboard gremlins that caused them to lose a lap earlier in the race. Matteo Malucelli, having taken over the Ferrari from Beretta lost two further places to Edwards and Marc Goossens in the #91 SRT Viper in the first laps of his stint, though he gained one spot back when Edwards returned to the pits to serve out a penalty after the team had worked on his Z4 GTE while refuelling was taking place. The penalty dropped Edwards back to fifth in GT, Jorg Muller in the other BMW taking fourth place.

2013 12 Hours of Sebring class standings after 7 hours

#1 Audi – Fassler/Jarvis/Treluyer
#2 Audi – di Grassi/McNish/Kristensen
#12 Lola – Heidfeld/Jani/Prost

#551 HPD – Briscoe/Franchitti/Tucker
#552 HPD – Hunter-Reay/Pagenaud/Tucker
#41 Zytek – Kimber-Smith/Lux/Zugel

#8 ORECA – Cumming/Johansson/Marcelli
#52 ORECA – Cheng/Guasch/Ostella
#500 ORECA – Heinemeier-Hansson/Nunez/Shears

#4 Corvette – Gavin/Milner/Westbrook
#91 SRT – Dalziel/Farnbacher/Goossens
#62 Ferrari – Beretta/Bruni/Malucelli

#11 Porsche – Hedlund/Heylen/Fogarty
#66 Porsche – Faulkner/Keating/Stanton
#44 Porsche  – Ehret/Imperatori/Sandberg

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James is our Diet-Coke fuelled writer and has been with TCF pretty much since day 1, he can be found frequenting twitter at @_JBroomhead
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