#2 Porsche snatches lead from #38 LMP2 ORECA ahead of final hour

Porsche reclaimed the lead of the Le Mans 24 Hours with one hour to go after the #2 car of Timo Bernhard passed Ho-Pin Tung late in the penultimate hour

#2 Porsche snatches lead from #38 LMP2 ORECA ahead of final hour

The #2 Porsche 919 Hybrid has spent the last couple of hours chasing down the leading LMP2 cars - having suffered a motor generator unit issue early in the race - after the sister #1 car retired with four hours to go.

Bernhard caught Tung in the #38 DC-Racing-run Jackie Chan ORECA at a rate of around 10 seconds per lap and eventually made the move on the run out of the second Mulsanne chicane.

He now leads by over a minute after Tung pitted.

Tung is comfortable in second overall and heads the LMP2 class by two laps from the #35 Signatech ORECA of Andre Negrao.

Negrao in turn leads the #13 Rebellion ORECA of Nelson Piquet Jr by 25 seconds after Piquet was handed a 10-second time penalty at his recent stop for causing a collision with the #49 Bratislava Ligier.

A lengthy pitstop added to Piquet's woes and dropped him well behind Negrao, having run much closer previously.

THREE MAKES IN THE MIX FOR GTE WIN

Porsche, Chevrolet and Aston Martin were still vying for the GTE Pro class lead in the penultimate hour, during which Porsche had to service Frederic Makowiecki's #91 car twice, 15 minutes apart.

That left Jan Magnussen leading in the #63 Corvette going into the final hour, and brought the #97 Aston Martin back into the frame as a contender.

Makowiecki was looking to triple-stint his final set of tyres and looked odds-on to move back into the lead during the final hour once Magnussen and Aston's Jonny Adam had pitted.

But a front-left puncture forced him back into the pits shortly after making a routine fuel stop.

Adam pitted the #97 Aston from the lead at the turn of the hour, raising the prospect that it might have to splash-and-dash before the chequered flag.

This handed the advantage to Magnussen, who has one more routine stop to make and leads Adam by 18s.

Makowiecki will now have to make his way past the third-placed Ford GT of Harry Tincknell to get back on the podium.

The Vanthoor/Smith/Stevens #84 Ferrari is on course for a one-lap victory over the similar #55 entry in GTE Am.

POSITIONS AFTER 23 HOURS

Pos Class Car Drivers Laps Gap
1 LMP1 #2 Porsche Bernhard, Bamber, Hartley 349
2 LMP2 #38 Oreca Tung, Laurent, Jarvis 349 + 23.055s
3 LMP2 #35 Alpine Panciatici, Ragues, Negrao 346 + 3 Laps
4 LMP2 #13 Oreca Piquet Jr, H. Hansson, Beche 346 + 27.443s
5 LMP2 #37 Oreca Cheng, Gommendy, Brundle 346 + 1m12.521s
6 LMP2 #32 Ligier Owen, De Sadeleer, Albuquerque 344 + 5 Laps
7 LMP2 #24 Oreca Graves, Hirschi, Vergne 343 + 6 Laps
8 LMP2 #40 Oreca Allen, Matelli, Bradley 343 + 56.658s
9 LMP1 #8 Toyota Buemi, Davidson, Nakajima 340 + 9 Laps
10 LMP2 #47 Dallara Lacorte, Sernagiotto, Belicchi 337 + 12 Laps
11 LMP2 #34 Ligier Moore, Hanson, Chandhok 334 + 15 Laps
12 LMP2 #36 Alpine Dumas, Menezes, Rao 333 + 16 Laps
13 LMP2 #17 Ligier Lafargue, Lafargue, Zollinger 328 + 21 Laps
14 LMP2 #29 Dallara Lammers, Van Eerd, Barrichello 327 + 22 Laps
15 LMP2 #21 Oreca Hedman, Hanley, Rosenqvist 327 + 35.166s
16 LMP2 #33 Ligier Nicolet, Nicolet, Maris 325 + 24 Laps
17 GTE Pro #63 Chevrolet Magnussen, Garcia, Taylor 324 + 25 Laps
18 GTE Pro #97 Aston Turner, Adam, Serra 323 + 26 Laps
19 GTE Pro #67 Ford Priaulx, Tincknell, Derani 323 + 1m54.142s
20 GTE Pro #91 Porsche Lietz, Makowiecki, Pilet 323 + 2m34.601s
21 GTE Pro #71 Ferrari Rigon, Bird, Molina 323 + 3m41.064s
22 LMP2 #31 Oreca Prost, Canal, Senna 322 + 27 Laps
23 GTE Pro #68 Ford Hand, Muller, Kanaan 322 + 3.198s
24 GTE Pro #69 Ford Briscoe, Westbrook, Dixon 321 + 28 Laps
25 GTE Pro #64 Chevrolet Gavin, Milner, Fassler 318 + 31 Laps
26 GTE Pro #95 Aston Thiim, Sorensen, Stanaway 317 + 32 Laps
27 GTE Am #84 Ferrari Smith, Stevens, Vanthoor 317 + 2m59.440s
28 GTE Am #55 Ferrari Cameron, Scott, Cioci 316 + 33 Laps
29 GTE Pro #66 Ford Mucke, Pla, Johnson 316 + 57.768s
30 GTE Am #62 Ferrari Macneil, Sweedler, Bell 315 + 34 Laps
31 GTE Am #99 Aston Howard, Gunn, Bryant 314 + 35 Laps
32 GTE Am #61 Ferrari Mok, Sawa, Griffin 314 + 11.543s
33 GTE Am #77 Porsche Ried, Cairoli, Dienst 314 + 3m08.523s
34 LMP2 #45 Ligier Patterson, Mcmurry, Capillaire 313 + 36 Laps
35 GTE Am #90 Aston Yoluc, Hankey, Bell 313 + 1.795s
36 GTE Am #98 Aston Dalla Lana, Lamy, Lauda 313 + 32.481s
37 LMP2 #27 Dallara Aleshin, Sirotkin, Shaitar 313 + 1m36.658s
38 GTE Am #93 Porsche Long, Al Faisal, Hedlund 313 + 1m44.243s
39 GTE Am #86 Porsche Wainwright, Barker, Foster 312 + 37 Laps
40 GTE Am #60 Ferrari Wee, Katoh, Parente 312 + 53.678s
41 LMP2 #22 Oreca Rojas, Hirakawa, Gutierrez 311 + 38 Laps
42 GTE Am #54 Ferrari Flohr, Castellacci, Beretta 311 + 3m04.377s
43 GTE Am #65 Ferrari Nielsen, Balzan, Curtis 308 + 41 Laps
44 GTE Am #83 Ferrari Krohn, Jonsson, Bertolini 305 + 44 Laps
45 GTE Pro #51 Ferrari Calado, Pier Guidi, Rugolo 302 + 47 Laps
46 LMP2 #39 Oreca Guibbert, Trouillet, Winslow 301 + 48 Laps
47 LMP2 #49 Ligier Konopka, Calko, Breukers 297 + 52 Laps
48 LMP2 #43 Riley Keating, Bleekemolen, Taylor 296 + 53 Laps
49 GTE Am #50 Chevrolet Rees, Brandela, Philippon 293 + 56 Laps
50 LMP1 #1 Porsche Jani, Lotterer, Tandy 318 Retired
51 LMP2 #23 Ligier Barthez, Buret, Berthon 296 Retired
52 LMP2 #28 Oreca Perrodo, Vaxiviere, Collard 213 Retired
53 GTE Pro #92 Porsche Christensen, Estre, Werner 179 Retired
54 LMP1 #9 Toyota Lapierre, Kunimoto, Lopez 160 Retired
55 LMP1 #7 Toyota Conway, Kobayashi, Sarrazin 154 Retired
56 LMP2 #25 Oreca Gonzalez, Trummer, Petrov 152 Retired
57 GTE Pro #82 Ferrari Vilander, Fisichella, Kaffer 72 Retired
58 LMP2 #26 Oreca Rusinov, Thiriet, Lynn 20 Retired
59 GTE Am #88 Porsche Bachler, Lemeret, Al Qubaisi 18 Retired
60 LMP1 #4 Enso Webb, Kraihamer, Bonanomi 7 Retired
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#2 Porsche closing on race-leading #38 LMP2 ORECA in 22nd hour
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