Le Mans 24 Hours: Toyota on top as Porsche slips back in hour five

Toyota regained control of the Le Mans 24 Hours, as Stephane Sarrazin jumped the Porsche of Brendon Hartley in the pits before the 919 Hybrid made an unscheduled stop

Le Mans 24 Hours: Toyota on top as Porsche slips back in hour five

Hartley and Sarrazin had been taking turns at the front between their stops, but Sarrazin crucially pulled off a 15-second swing to go from being 10 seconds behind to five ahead during a pitstop cycle.

The Toyota TS040's position at the front then became even more secure, as Hartley had to make an unscheduled stop with what he suspected was a puncture.

That allowed Benoit Treluyer up to second in the #2 Audi R18 e-tron quattro, while Hartley briefly lost third to the #1 Audi of Lucas di Grassi - which passed the Porsche with ease on the start-finish straight before pitting shortly afterwards.

However, Treluyer was unable to match Sarrazin's pace, allowing the Toyota to extend his lead to more than 50 seconds towards the end of the hour, before Treluyer made a scheduled pitstop.

Alex Brundle has opened up a lead of 16 seconds in the LMP2 class driving the #35 Oak Ligier-Nissan JSP2.

He reeled in previous leader Michel Frey's #34 Race Performance ORECA thanks to fresher rubber and passed him into the first Mulsanne chicane.

Frey took to the escape road while trying to tough it out on the outside, but retained second place in class ahead of the #36 Signatech Alpine ORECA of Pierre-Loup Chatin.

The #48 Murphy Prototypes ORECA, which crashed earlier in the race, has rejoined although a gearbox glitch then manifested itself on the car, costing it more time.

CORVETTE CONTINUES GTE CONTROL

Corvette continues to lead the GTE class after a superb stint from Tommy Milner opened up a commanding advantage for the lead C7.R.

Milner led the two Manthey Porsches by half a dozen seconds at the top of the hour but a long stop for Jorg Bergmeister handed him a gap over the other 911 RSR of Marco Holzer that was closer to half a minute.

The American then eked away lap by lap with supreme consistency to build a buffer of three-quarters of a minute over Tony Vilander, who moved his Ferrari 458 Italia into second courtesy of swift pitwork from the AF Corse crew.

He had Bruno Senna's Aston Martin Vantage closing in by the end of the hour though, after the Brazilian caught as passed the squabbling Porsches - headed by Bergmeister after a brave move into the tightening right hander before Indianapolis.

Aston Martin continues to lead in GTE Am, with Christoffer Nygaard well clear of the Ram Racing Ferrari 458 of Archie Hamilton. Patrick Dempsey is third, dropping out of second in his Proton-run Dempsey Porsche after a mandatory pitstop.

POSITIONS AFTER 5 HOURS Pos Cl Car Drivers Laps Gap 1. LMP1 #7 Toyota Wurz/Sarrazin/Nakajima 72 2. LMP1 #2 Audi Fassler/Lotterer/Treluyer 72 + 1m44.060s 3. LMP1 #20 Porsche Bernhard/Webber/Hartley 71 + 1 Lap 4. LMP1 #1 Audi Di Grassi/Gene/Kristensen 71 + 45.691s 5. LMP1 #12 Rebellion Prost/Heidfeld/Beche 69 + 3 Laps 6. LMP1 #14 Porsche Dumas/Jani/Lieb 67 + 5 Laps 7. LMP2 #35 Ligier Brundle/Mardenborough/Shulzhitskiy 66 + 6 Laps 8. LMP2 #34 Oreca Frey/Mailleux/Lancaster 66 + 15.798s 9. LMP2 #36 Alpine Chatin/Panciatici/Webb 66 + 20.462s 10. LMP2 #46 Ligier Thiriet/Badey/Gommendy 66 + 1m06.320s 11. LMP2 #26 Morgan Rusinov/Pla/Canal 66 + 3m04.783s 12. LMP2 #43 Morgan Klien/Hirsch/Brandela 65 + 7 Laps 13. LMP2 #24 Oreca Rast/Charouz/Capillaire 65 + 39.484s 14. LMP2 #47 Oreca Howson/Bradley/Imperatori 65 + 1m12.030s 15. LMP2 #38 Zytek Dolan/Tincknell/Turvey 65 + 1m49.894s 16. LMP2 #33 Ligier Cheng/Tung/Fong 65 + 2m03.613s 17. LMP1 #13 Rebellion Kraihamer/Belicchi/Leimer 64 + 8 Laps 18. LMP2 #50 Morgan Ragues/Taylor/Ihara 64 + 22.214s 19. GTEP #74 Chevrolet Gavin/Milner/Westbrook 64 + 47.887s 20. LMP1 #8 Toyota Davidson/Lapierre/Buemi 64 + 1m18.180s 21. GTEP #97 Aston Turner/Mucke/Senna 63 + 9 Laps 22. GTEP #51 Ferrari Bruni/Vilander/Fisichella 63 + 0.985s 23. GTEP #91 Porsche Pilet/Bergmeister/Tandy 63 + 8.822s 24. GTEP #92 Porsche Holzer/Makowiecki/Lietz 63 + 9.425s 25. LMP2 #42 Zytek Kimber-Smith/McMurry/Dyson 63 + 19.442s 26. GTEP #73 Chevrolet Magnussen/Garcia/Taylor 63 + 34.479s 27. GTEA #98 Aston Dalla Lana/Lamy/Nygaard 63 + 55.217s 28. GTEA #53 Ferrari Mowlem/Patterson/Hamilton 62 + 10 Laps 29. GTEA #95 Aston Poulsen/Heinemeier-Hansson/Thiim 62 + 22.979s 30. GTEA #72 Ferrari Bertolini/Shaitar/Basov 62 + 24.709s 31. GTEA #77 Porsche Dempsey/Foster/Long 62 + 1m04.130s 32. GTEA #88 Porsche Ried/Bachler/Al Qubaisi 62 + 2m44.214s 33. GTEA #61 Ferrari Perez-Companc/Cioci/Venturi 62 + 2m46.900s 34. GTEA #90 Ferrari Montecalvo/Roda/Ruberti 62 + 3m33.165s 35. GTEA #70 Ferrari Nakano/Ehret/Rich 61 + 11 Laps 36. GTEA #57 Ferrari Krohn/Jonsson/Collins 61 + 1m18.520s 37. GTEA #66 Ferrari Al Faisal/Neiman/Pumpelly 61 + 1m24.255s 38. GTEA #67 Porsche Maris/Merlin/Helary 61 + 1m26.324s 39. GTEA #75 Porsche Perrodo/Collard/Palttala 61 + 1m35.079s 40. GTEA #58 Ferrari Barthez/Pons/Ayari 61 + 2m57.759s 41. GTEA #60 Ferrari Mann/Case/Giammaria 60 + 12 Laps 42. LMP2 #29 Morgan Schell/Leutwiller/Roussel 60 + 4.825s 43. LMP2 #27 Oreca Zlobin/Salo/Ladygin 59 + 13 Laps 44. GTEP #79 Porsche MacNeil/Curtis/Bleekemolen 58 + 14 Laps 45. GTEA #76 Porsche Narac/Armindo/Hallyday 58 + 17.439s 46. GTEA #62 Ferrari Mallegol/Bachelier/Blank 57 + 15 Laps 47. GTEP #52 Ferrari Griffin/Parente/Leo 50 + 22 Laps 48. LMP2 #48 Oreca Berthon/Gonzalez/Chandhok 35 + 37 Laps 49. LMP2 #41 Zytek Munemman/Latif/Winslow 31 Retired 50. GTEP #71 Ferrari Rigon/Kaffer/Beretta 28 Retired 51. LMP1 #3 Audi Albuquerque/Bonanomi/Jarvis 25 Retired 52. GTEA #81 Ferrari Wyatt/Rugolo/Bird 22 Retired 53. LMP2 #37 Oreca Ladygin/Minassian/Mediani 9 Retired 54. CDNT #0 Nissan Ordonez/Reip/Motoyama 5 Retired 
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Le Mans 24 Hours: Porsche leads Toyota after four hours

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