H10: ORECA Peugeot closes on #2

Stephane Sarrazin, having taken over driving duties from Franck Montagny, ensured that the #2 Peugeot remained in the lead of the Le Mans 24 Hours as the race completed the tenth hour, though with a reduced cushion to the ORECA 908 HDi FAP

H10: ORECA Peugeot closes on #2

The factory machine now leads the race by 1m37s from Nicolas Lapierre, who produced a sequence of fast laps towards the end of the hour, which was affected by a safety car period that involved the hitherto GT1 class-leading Matech Ford.

Coming in to play also was Timo Bernhard's Audi, which was just over two minutes behind the ORECA Peugeot, with Marcel Faessler in the #9 R15 just 10 seconds further back.

Tom Kristensen took over from Audi team-mate Allan McNish in the #7 car as he swapped fifth position with the #1 Peugeot - now in the hands of Anthony Davidson - as the cars continued to battle on varied fuel strategies.

The safety car period was prompted by a shunt for the #24 Oak Racing LMP2 machine, which sheered a right-front wheel on the exit of the Porsche Curves. This may have been caused by hitting the #60 Ford of Thomas Mutsch, which reported significant rear-end damage from contact.

Having led its class for more-or-less the entire race, Mustch ended the hour fourth in class and nine laps behind the leader - Gabriele Gardel in the Saleen.

The other significant accident in the hour featured Jean-Christophe Boullion, who shunted the Rebellion Lola out of tenth place at the Ford Chicane - ending a strong run for the Swiss team, just moments after the safety car pulled in.

Danny Watts remained in the lead of LMP2 for Strakka, with Marino Franchitti now in pursuit for Highcroft.

That tremendous dice between the #64 Corvette and the Risi Ferrari seems a long time ago now as the yellow American machine is still in the lead of GT2. It is however only 10s clear of the sister GM machine in the hands of Johnny O'Connell. The #82 Risi Ferrari is completely out of the picture now having spent most of the hour in the pits.

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