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Maserati lead into the night

No.1 Vitaphone MaseratiMaserati have taken over at the front of the 24 Hours of Spa and are in a dominant position as the race goes into the night.

The two Vitaphone cars are three laps clear of their closest opposition, with the No.1 car nearly a lap ahead of the No.2. The Gigawave Aston Martin currently holds third with Spartak Racing's Lamborghini Murcielago fourth.

There had been a close battle at the head of the field throughout most of the evening with the two Vitaphone Maseratis, the two Phoenix Corvettes, and the Jetalliance and Gigawave Astons all in the hunt.

But several of the contenders dropped by the wayside during the night. Two were removed in one go when Karl Wendlinger crashed the Jetalliance Aston at Les Combes. He struck the barrier and bounced back across the track, collecting Mike Hezemans in the No.6 Phoenix Corvette.

Wendlinger was eliminated on the spot and the No.6 car is now seven laps down after touring back to the pits for repairs.

The sister Phoenix Corvette retired completely soon after when Alex Margaritis spun into the barrier. He tried to recover the car to the pits but it caught fire on the way and he was forced to park it.

Stephane Sarrazin currently leads in the No.1 car, during a Safety Car period, with Alessandro Pier Guidi aboard the No.2 Maserati in second place. Darren Turner is aboard the Gigawave Aston, but three laps behind the leaders, with Peter Kox fourth in the Lamborghini.

Marco Malucelli is leading the GT2 class in the BMW Scuderia Italia Ferrari, but Richard Westbrook is less than a minute behind in the No.61 Prospeed Porsche. Jaime Melo is two laps down on the pair in the first of the AF Corse Ferraris.

Pos Drivers                                   Car                 Gap
 1. Bertolini/Bartels/Sarrazin/van der Poele  Maserati       240 laps
 2. Negrao/Ramos/Pier Guidi/Lemeret           Maserati      +2:57.320
 3. Simonsen/Peter/Turner/Thompson            Aston Martin    +3 laps
 4. Kox/Rusinov/Lammers/Enge                  Lamborghini     +5 laps
 5. Fassler/Hezemans/Gollin/Deletraz          Corvette        +7 laps
 6. Kumpen/Longin/Mollekens/Bouvy             Saleen          +9 laps
 7. Aucott/Ferte/Daoudi                       Maserati        +9 laps
 8. Malucelli/Ruberti/Camathias/Rigon         Ferrari        +10 laps
 9. Collard/Westbrook/Lieb                    Porsche        +10 laps
10. Bruni/Vilander/Melo/Salo                  Ferrari        +12 laps
11. Biagi/Montanari/Farnbacher/Russo          Ferrari        +14 laps
12. Mullen/Piccini/Niarchos/Shedden           Ferrari        +15 laps
13. Moser/del Monte/Vannelet/Palma            Ferrari        +17 laps
14. Bermes/Thomas/Basseng/Hemroulle           Porsche        +21 laps
15. Juniper/Twigg/Baird/Forbes                Porsche        +21 laps
16. Plati/Basso/Tenchini/Baguette             Ferrari        +21 laps
17. Jakubowski/Campbell/Barde/Zangarelli      Ferrari        +22 laps
18. Heylen/Loix/Dermont/Lamot                 Porsche        +22 laps
19. Babini/Davies/Monfardini                  Ferrari        +23 laps
20. Bell/Kirkaldy/Muller/Sutton               Ferrari        +24 laps
21. Williams/Sugden/Pompidou/Ashburn          Porsche        +24 laps
22. Jordan/Jones/Jones                        Ascari         +25 laps
23. Duval/Kelders/Greisch/Kerkhove            Porsche        +25 laps
24. Duez/Sougnez/Wauters/Muytjens             Porsche        +26 laps
31. Huisman/Voerman/Khan/van Splunteren       Porsche        +29 laps
33. Chaillet/Geofroy/Galand/Rosoux            Dodge          +29 laps
29. Coens/Fumal/Schroyen/Faggionato           Ferrari        +35 laps
 9. Lietz/Long/Narac                          Porsche        +43 laps
37. Ballay/Scheier                            Ferrari        +52 laps
35. Brouard/Noziere/Stepec/Samon              Porsche        +53 laps
13. Forsten/Palttala/Henzler/Horion           Porsche        +57 laps
39. Kuzminykh/Knauss/Kraihamer/Rich           Lamborghini    +75 laps
38. Lesoudier/Brandela/Peyroles/Lester        Ferrari        +88 laps
 2. Wendlinger/Sharp/Muller/Litchner-Hoyer    Aston Martin   +89 laps
27. Leinders/Kuppens/Martin                   Gillet         +95 laps
 5. Margaritis/Alzen/Menten/Schlunssen        Corvette      +100 laps
32. Kaufmann/Talkanitsa/Ullmann/Heyer         Porsche       +113 laps
36. Renard/Hissom/Wasover/Thirion             Ferrari       +118 laps
34. Baron/Fournet/Corbel/Ferreira             Porsche       +148 laps
40. Helary/Radermecker/Desbrueres/Desbrueres  Ferrari       +209 laps
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