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Le Mans 24 Hours of Le Mans

Jota Porsche suffers spectacular crash while leading Le Mans

Jota's customer Porsche LMDh suffered a major crash while leading the Le Mans 24 Hours in the fifth hour, putting the Ferraris 1-2 at the head of the order.

#38 Hertz Team Jota Porsche 963 of Antonio Felix Da Costa, Will Stevens, Yifei Ye

The #38 Jota Porsche 963 was comfortably leading the race when Yifei Ye went too wide at the Porsche Curves, hitting the tyre barriers side-on.

While the impact was relatively small, it stripped off the entire rear bodywork of the Porsche, exposing its entire V8 twin-turbo engine.

Yifei was able to bring the car he shares with Antonio Felix da Costa and Will Stevens back into the pits for repairs, but it handed the lead of the race to the #51 Ferrari of Antonio Giovinazzi, with Miguel Molina running second in the sister #50 499P entry.

The #38 Jota spent a total of 20 minutes in the garage, before rejoining the race in 14th place in the Hypercar class.

 

Speaking on TV, Jota team boss Dieter Gass revealed that Yifei was due to pit at the end of the lap to hand over the car to Stevens.

Explaining the crash, Gass said: "He said he lost it under the braking in the Porsche corners and then obviously hit the tyre barrier and that made some quite damage on the car.

"We obviously have seen the front-end and rear wing, and the engine cover going off as well. And from what we have seen the 'elephant foot' - the part behind the front wheel and the forward part of the floor.

"That's the extent of damage we can see so far. Suspension seems to be okay, we hope. We are trying to repair the bodywork and then we go again."

The #5 Porsche of Dane Cameron that had earlier got up to back of the Jota lost positions to the two Ferraris in separate off-track excurcions, before being hit with a drive-through penalty for overtaking the Walkenhorst Ferrari GTE under the safety car.

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