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With the rain still falling in La Sarthe, much of the fourth hour of this year's Le Man's was spent behind the safety car and, as such, the order has remained unchanged at the top with Frank Biela still comfortably in the lead for Audi, while the Bentleys are struggling in the torrential conditions.
Biela took over in the number one Joest-run R8 when the majority of the field poured into the pitlane to take on rain tyres. The sister car of Laurent Aiello, Rinaldo Capello and Christian Pescatori moved ahead of the number seven Bentley to take second place with the man who set pole position, Capello, behind the wheel.

The race went green 15 minutes before the end of the hour number four and the safety car finally let the drivers go back on the offensive after almost 45-minutes at strolling pace.

Both Bentleys are suffering in the soaking conditions with water getting into the EXP Speed 8's electrics leading to missed downshifts. As a result, Guy Smith has dropped to fourth overall and may not be able to stay there for long with the Yannick Dalmas/Frank Montagny/Stephane Sarrazin Chrysler-Mopar bearing down from fifth place.

The lucky recipient of third position was the privateer Champion Audi with Formula 1 retiree Johnny Herbert behind the wheel. The Ingolsatdt steamroller is therefore firmly back on track, albeit with Herbert a lap behind the lead pair.

Despite the extended pace-car period, the was action down the field. Before the yellows started flying the Deletraz/Fabre/Hene ROC car retook the LMP675 class lead from MG. It held the class by a mere 16 seconds by the end of the hour.

The two Chevrolet Corvettes swapped the lead in GTS as the Pilgrim/Collins/Freon car took up the cudgels and stretched out a 1 minute 28 second lead by the end of the hour after Scott Pruett took over from Johnny O'Connell in a routine stop for the sister car.

There was no change in GT as the Freisinger Porsche of Jeannette/Dumas/Haezebrouk kept itself honest - and stretched out a slender 7 second class lead, albeit five laps adrift of the race leader.


1 (900) F.Biela/T.Kristensen/E.Pirro, Audi R8, Joest Audi Sport, 50 laps
2 (900) R Capello/L Aiello/C Pescatori, Audi R8, Joest Audi Sport, +2:07.465
7 (GTP) M.Brundle/S.Ortelli/G.Smith, Bentley EXP Speed 8, Team Bentley, +1 lap
3 (900) J.Herbert/R.Kelleners/D.Theys, Audi R8, Champion Racing, +48.406
15 (900) Y.Dalmas/F.Montagny/S.Sarrazin, Chrysler-Mopar LMP, ORECA Chrysler, +58.183
17 (900) J C. Boullion/S.Bourdais/L.Redon, Courage-Peugeot C60, Pescarolo Sport, +1:19.999
8 (GTP) A.Wallace/B.Leitzinger/E.Vande Poele, Bentley EXP Speed 8, Team Bentley, +1:42.444
16 (900) O.Beretta/K.Wendlinger/P.Lamy, Chrysler-Mopar LMP, Team Playstation, +2 laps
5 (900) E.Collard/M.Goossens/E.Bernard, Cadillac Northstar LMP, DAMS, +20.477
38 (675) J.D. Deletraz/P.Farbe/J.Gene Reynard-Lehmann 01Q ROC Competition, +1 lap

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

38 (675) J.D. Deletraz/P.Farbe/J.Gene Reynard-Lehmann 01Q ROC Competition, +1 lap

64 (GTS) A.Pilgrim/K.Collins/F.Freon, Chevrolet Corvette C5-R, Corvette Racing, +3 laps

77 (GT) G.Jeannette/R.Dumas/P.Haezebrouck, Porsche 911 GT3-RS, Freisinger Motorsport, +5 laps


(Class), No, Drivers, Car, Laps, Reason
35 35 (675) W.Carway/M.O'Connell/F.Migault, Pilbeam-Nissan MP84 Rowan Racing, off
57 (GTS) D.Terrien/J.Cochet/J.P. Dayraut, Chrysler Viper GTS-R, Equipe de France FFSA, off

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