Hour 13: MG has left the building...

MG finally threw the towel in after a promising, but ultimately unreliable first Le Mans for the fledgling project. But for those cynics who said the pair of cars would be lucky to finish the Le Mans 24 Minutes, never mind Hours, the speed, potential and longevity of the EX257 was an eye-opener

Hour 13: MG has left the building...

But with 13 hours gone, the garage door was closed on the second and last MG, with terminal engine problems putting paid to a run that had seen the marque as high as fourth overall.

"There's a problem in the engine somewhere," said team boss Hugh Chamberlain. "It was perfectly alright one minute and the next thing, bang it's gone. Even though it was in the garage for ages, I'm going to cheat and say it lasted half a race."

Back at the front, the Audi-Audi-Bentley status quo was maintained, with Tom Kristensen swapping for Emanuele Pirro in the lead R8; Rinaldo Capello staying onboard after a fuel stop, and Eric van de Poele stepping out of the Bentley to allow Butch Leitzinger behind the wheel.

In terms of excitement, it was the most static the race had been, but it may be the calm before the storm as daylight approaches.


The Roc Reynard continues to punch above its weight, staying in the top five into the second half of the race. It has dropped down one place since the previous hour mark to fifth overall, but it's still lapping consistently.

Ron Fellows is double stinting in the leading GTS - the No 63 Goodwrench Corvette. A perfect pit stop, without changing his tyres was the highlight of the hour. But the battle for second-placed honours has swung in favour of the Saleens. Johnny Mowlem is at the wheel of the No 62 RML Saleen is 10th overall and second in class.

In the GT category a rash of spins by the Porsches especially at the Dunlop Chicane. The No 77 Friesinger Motorsport Porsche, lying 15th overall and second in the class, and the No 76 PK Sport Porsche left the circuit briefly, but were able to continue. The 83 Rosa/Babini/Drui Seikel Motorsport Porsche still leads.


1 (900) F.Biela/T.Kristensen/E.Pirro, Audi R8, Joest Audi Sport, 168 laps
2 (900) R Capello/L Aiello/C Pescatori, Audi R8, Joest Audi Sport, + 3 laps
8 (GTP) A.Wallace/B.Leitzinger/E.Vande Poele, Bentley EXP Speed 8, Team Bentley, + 10 laps
6 (900) W.Taylor/M.Angelelli/C.Tinseau, Cadillac Northstar LMP, DAMS, + 13 laps
38 (675) J.D. Deletraz/P.Farbe/J.Gene Reynard-Lehmann 01Q ROC Competition, + 14 laps
16 (900) O.Beretta/K.Wendlinger/P.Lamy, Chrysler-Mopar LMP, Team Playstation, + 15 laps
63 (GTS) R.Fellows/J.O'Connell/S.Pruett, Chevrolet Corvette C5-R, Corvette Racing, + 16 laps
14 (900) S.Ara/N.Amorim/M.Kondo, Chrysler-Mopar LMP, ORECA Chrysler, + 17 laps
9 (900) J.Lammers/V.Hillebrand/D.Crevels, Dome-Judd S101, Racing for Holland, +18 laps
62 (GTS) I.McKellar/B.Lambert/J.Mowlem, Saleen-Ford S7R, Ray Mallock Limited, + 19 Laps

Aiello/Capello, Audi R8, Team Joest Audi Sport,
3m39.046s


38 (675) J.D. Deletraz/P.Farbe/J.Gene
Reynard-Lehmann 01Q ROC Competition, +14 laps
63 (GTS) R.Fellows/J.O'Connell/S.Pruett,
Chevrolet Corvette C5-R, Corvette Racing, +16 laps
83 (GT) G.Rosa/F.Babini/L.Drudi, Porsche 911
GT3-RS, Seikel Motorsport, + 20 laps


15 (900) Y.Dalmas/F.Montagny/S.Sarrazin, Chrysler-Mopar LMP, ORECA Chrysler
36 (675) D.de Radigues/S.Maassen/H.Matsuda, Reynard-Judd 01Q, Dick Barbour Racing
11 (900) K.Graf/J.Davies/G.Formato, Panoz LMP 07, Panoz Motorsports
12 (900) D.Brabham/J.Magnussen/F.Lagorce, Panoz LMP 07, Panoz Motorsports
3 (900) J.Herbert/R.Kelleners/D.Theys, Audi R8, Champion Racing
10 (900) J.Nielsen/H.Katoh/C.Elgaard, Dome-Judd S101, Den Bla Avis
55 (GTS) V.Vosse/C.Rosenblad/V.Ickx, Chrysler Viper GTS-R Paul Belmondo Racing
(GTP) M.Brundle/S.Ortelli/G.Smith, Bentley EXP Speed 8, Team Bentley, gearbox
(900) E.Collard/M.Goossens/E.Bernard, Cadillac Northstar LMP, DAMS, stopped
(900) S.Johansson/T.Coronel/P.Lemarie, Audi R8, Johansson Motorsport, accident damage
GT R Donovan/T Lingner/C MacAllister, Porsche 911 GT3, Racing Engineering, unknown
(675) A.Reid/W.Hughes/J.Kane, MG-Lola EX257, MG Sport, engine
(675) M.Duno/J.Graham/D.Murry, Reynard-Judd 01Q, Dick Barbour Racing, accident
(GTS) T.Seiler/W.Brun/C.Slater, Saleen-Ford S7R, Konrad Motorsport, accident
(GTS) D.Terrien/J.Cochet/J.P. Dayraut, Chrysler Viper GTS-R, Equipe de France FFSA, accident
(675) W.Carway/M.O'Connell/F.Migault, Pilbeam-Nissan MP84 Rowan Racing, accident


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