Le Mans hour 11: Alonso chasing race-leading #7 Toyota

Fernando Alonso returned to the wheel of the #8 Toyota and is comfortably quicker than the #7, although it still leads the Le Mans 24 Hours by just under two minutes

Le Mans hour 11: Alonso chasing race-leading #7 Toyota

After Alonso's team-mate Sebastien Buemi was caught out by a mixture of slow zones and given a stop/go penalty for speeding under one, the Spaniard climbed aboard the #8 car halfway through the hour.

In his opening laps, he carved 8s out of Conway's to remain on target to lower his lead below the two minutes mark and he continues to lap several seconds faster than the long-running driver stint Conway has had - although times were converging as the hour ended.

Rebellion Racing's largely trouble-free run means it is comfortably the leading LMP1 privateer ranks with Mateos Beche in third and one lap ahead of Bruno Senna, who has taken over the #1 machine.

Ben Hanley has continued DragonSpeed's recovery from Renger van der Zande's Dunlop Chicane off earlier in the race and is close to clearing the GTE Pro field in 25th overall.

But the Manor-Ginettas are way down the order once again after Oliver Rowland did not return to the track having stopped at Tertre Rouge over an hour ago.

That means Leo Roussel is ahead of the sister car in 49th place.

Rowland and Manor-Ginetta's struggles mean that Vitaly Petrov is closing on them, having been solidly last while Jenson Button and Mikhail Aleshin aided the recovery drive earlier in the race.

G-Drive leads by a lap in LMP2

Roman Rusinov has put a lap on the field for the first time in the 11th hour as the #26 G-Drive ORECA continued to dominate in LMP2.

The Russian was consistently two seconds or more per lap faster than Pierre Thiriet's pursuing Signatech-Alpine and had put a lap on him by the 165th tour.

However, Thiriet was on a par with Julien Canal's third-placed Panis-Barthez Ligier, and was managing the gap at around 9.5s prior to their 17th stops as the hour mark approached.

Memo Rojas had a marginal grip on fourth in the IDEC Sport ORECA as the hour mark approached, with TDS Racing's Matthieu Vaxiviere just 7.5s behind and closing.

After losing a place to Vaxiviere's team-mate Loic Duval during the previous round of stops in the tenth hour, Jonathan Hirschi had slipped over half a minute back in sixth place in the #39 Graff-So24 ORECA.

Holding station in GTE

GTE Pro remains largely unchanged as Kevin Estre continues to hold a lead of over 90 seconds to the sister #91 car of Richard Lietz.

Joey Hand continues to lap the #68 Ford GT in third, with Antonio Giovinazzi's #51 Ferrari ahead of the #69 and #67 Fords driven by Scott Dixon and Harry Tincknell.

GTE Am is also in status quo, with the Dempsey-Proton Racing Porsche of Matt Campbell still over 90s clear of the JMW Motorsport Ferrari driven by Cooper MacNeil.

Positions after 11 hours

Pos Class Car Drivers Laps Gap
1 LMP1 #7 Toyota Conway, Kobayashi, Lopez 178
2 LMP1 #8 Toyota Buemi, Nakajima, Alonso 178 + 1m57.282s
3 LMP1 #3 Rebellion Laurent, Beche, Menezes 174 + 4 Laps
4 LMP1 #1 Rebellion Lotterer, Jani, Senna 172 + 6 Laps
5 LMP2 #26 Oreca Rusinov, Pizzitola, Vergne 170 + 8 Laps
6 LMP2 #36 Alpine Lapierre, Negrao, Thiriet 169 + 9 Laps
7 LMP2 #23 Ligier Buret, Canal, Stevens 169 + 0.436s
8 LMP2 #48 Oreca Lafargue, Chatin, Rojas 168 + 10 Laps
9 LMP2 #28 Oreca Perrodo, Vaxiviere, Duval 168 + 7.710s
10 LMP2 #39 Oreca Capillaire, Hirschi, Gommendy 168 + 40.811s
11 LMP2 #34 Ligier Taylor, Ledogar, Heinemeier-Hansson 167 + 11 Laps
12 LMP2 #40 Oreca Allen, Gutierrez, Guibbert 167 + 14.858s
13 LMP2 #22 Ligier Hanson, Albuquerque, Di Resta 167 + 33.872s
14 LMP2 #32 Ligier De Sadeleer, Owen, Montoya 166 + 12 Laps
15 LMP2 #31 Oreca Gonzalez, Maldonado, Berthon 165 + 13 Laps
16 LMP2 #29 Dallara Van Eerd, Van Der Garde, Lammers 165 + 18.107s
17 LMP2 #35 Dallara Shaitar, Newey, Nato 165 + 1m15.490s
18 LMP2 #37 Oreca Jaafar, Jeffri, Tan 163 + 15 Laps
19 LMP2 #44 Ligier Bertolini, Jonsson, Krohn 162 + 16 Laps
20 LMP2 #33 Ligier Cheng, Boulle, Nicolet 162 + 19.656s
21 LMP2 #47 Dallara Lacorte, Sernagiotto, Nasr 161 + 17 Laps
22 LMP2 #50 Ligier Creed, Ricci, Dagoneau 160 + 18 Laps
23 LMP1 #10 BR Hedman, Hanley, Van Der Zande 158 + 20 Laps
24 GTE Pro #92 Porsche Christensen, Estre, Vanthoor 158 + 5.320s
25 LMP2 #38 Oreca Tung, Richelmi, Aubry 158 + 40.136s
26 GTE Pro #91 Porsche Lietz, Bruni, Makowiecki 157 + 21 Laps
27 GTE Pro #68 Ford Hand, Muller, Bourdais 157 + 54.433s
28 GTE Pro #52 Ferrari Vilander, Giovinazzi, Derani 157 + 1m33.960s
29 GTE Pro #69 Ford Briscoe, Westbrook, Dixon 157 + 2m16.731s
30 GTE Pro #67 Ford Priaulx, Tincknell, Kanaan 157 + 2m19.110s
31 GTE Pro #63 Chevrolet Magnussen, Garcia, Rockenfeller 157 + 2m39.304s
32 GTE Pro #51 Ferrari Pier Guidi, Calado, Serra 156 + 22 Laps
33 GTE Pro #82 BMW Farfus, Felix Da Costa, Sims 155 + 23 Laps
34 GTE Pro #95 Aston Sorensen, Thiim, Turner 155 + 51.088s
35 GTE Pro #66 Ford Mucke, Pla, Johnson 155 + 3m01.402s
36 GTE Pro #81 BMW Tomczyk, Catsburg, Eng 154 + 24 Laps
37 GTE Am #77 Porsche Campbell, Ried, Andlauer 153 + 25 Laps
38 GTE Pro #71 Ferrari Rigon, Bird, Molina 153 + 1m29.602s
39 GTE Am #84 Ferrari Griffin, Macneil, Segal 153 + 1m44.580s
40 GTE Am #85 Ferrari Keating, Bleekemolen, Stolz 153 + 1m56.939s
41 GTE Pro #97 Aston Lynn, Martin, Adam 153 + 2m24.276s
42 GTE Am #88 Porsche Cairoli, Al Qubaisi, Roda 153 + 2m51.928s
43 GTE Am #54 Ferrari Flohr, Castellacci, Fisichella 153 + 2m52.475s
44 GTE Am #56 Porsche Bergmeister, Lindsey, Perfetti 152 + 26 Laps
45 GTE Pro #64 Chevrolet Gavin, Milner, Fassler 152 + 48.292s
46 GTE Am #99 Porsche Long, Pappas, Pumpelly 152 + 2m49.836s
47 GTE Am #80 Porsche Babini, Nielsen, Maris 152 + 3m18.766s
48 GTE Am #61 Ferrari Mok, Griffin, Sawa 152 + 4m50.503s
49 LMP1 #5 Ginetta Robertson, Simpson, Roussel 151 + 27 Laps
50 GTE Pro #93 Porsche Pilet, Tandy, Bamber 151 + 33.603s
51 GTE Am #90 Aston Yoluc, Hankey, Eastwood 149 + 29 Laps
52 GTE Am #86 Porsche Wainwright, Barker, Davison 148 + 30 Laps
53 GTE Am #70 Ferrari Ishikawa, Beretta, Cheever 145 + 33 Laps
54 LMP1 #6 Ginetta Rowland, Brundle, Turvey 137 + 41 Laps
55 LMP1 #11 BR Petrov, Aleshin, Button 127 + 51 Laps
56 LMP1 #17 BR Sarrazin, Orudzhev, Isaakyan 123 + 55 Laps
57 LMP2 #25 Ligier Patterson, De Jong, Kim 117 + 61 Laps
58 GTE Pro #94 Porsche Dumas, Bernhard, Muller 92 + 86 Laps
59 GTE Am #98 Aston Dalla Lana, Lamy, Lauda 92 + 6m08.912s
60 LMP1 #4 Enso Webb, Kraihamer, Dillmann 65 + 113 Laps
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Le Mans hour 10: Penalty setback for #8 Toyota in second

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Series WEC
Drivers Fernando Alonso
Teams Toyota Racing
Author Tom Errington
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