LM24 H13: Toyota closes back in on Audi under cautions

Toyota's two TS030 HYBRIDS moved back onto the lead lap of the 2013 Le Mans 24 Hours under a safety car that lasted for almost the duration of the 13th hour

LM24 H13: Toyota closes back in on Audi under cautions

Howard Blank was the cause, spearing off into the barriers between the Dunlop Esses and Tertre Rouge and causing significant damage to both his #54 AF Corse Ferrari and the safety fencing.

The result was a record seventh safety car, with three of this year's 13 hours now spent under caution.

The lights had been due to go out just before 0400 local time, only for heavy rain to convince organisers to extend the yellow period.

Toyota was the main beneficiary of events, with both Nicolas Lapierre and Sebastien Buemi - who took over from Anthony Davidson - moving back onto the lead lap.

They have the added benefit of wet conditions, which typically suit the TS030s in comparison to the dry, where Audi has a clear advantage.

The German marque still has a three minute gap at the head of the field through the #2 R18, now in the hands of Loic Duval following a driver change on the hour.

The lead car swapped to wet tyres at the same time, a move mirrored by the rest of the field almost immediately after.

Oliver Jarvis remains in touching distance of the Toyotas in the #3 R18, while the third Audi of Andre Lotterer is now ninth overall, albeit 10 laps off the lead.

The safety car helped preserve the LMP2 order, meaning Martin Plowman continues to lead the sister OAK Morgan-Nissan of Alex Brundle.

Lucas Luhr is third in the #38 Jota Zytek-Nissan, ahead of old GT1 team-mate Michael Krumm in the similar #42 Greaves-run machine.

The complexion of the GTE Pro victory fight changed following the #97 Aston Martin's impromptu stop, although Stefan Mucke managed to fight back past Patrick Pilet's #91 Manthey Porsche.

The sister #92 car now leads from the #99 Vantage, but Romain Dumas has made 12 stops to Makowiecki's 13.

GTE Am was also unchanged despite Piergiuseppe Perazzini stopping briefly out on track.

His #55 AF Corse Ferrari still leads the sister #61 458, although both are behind Raymond Narac in the #76 Imsa Porsche.

POSITIONS AFTER 13 HOURS Pos Cl Car Drivers Laps Gap 1. P1 #2 Audi Kristensen/McNish/Duval 188 2. P1 #8 Toyota Davidson/Sarrazin/Buemi 188 + 4m00.043s 3. P1 #7 Toyota Wurz/Lapierre/Nakajima 188 + 4m05.468s 4. P1 #3 Audi Gene/Jarvis/di Grassi 187 + 1 Lap 5. P1 #13 Lola Beche/Belicchi/Cheng 183 + 5 Laps 6. P1 #12 Lola Prost/Jani/Heidfeld 181 + 7 Laps 7. P1 #21 HPD Leventis/Kane/Watts 181 + 4m23.910s 8. P2 #35 Morgan Baguette/Plowman/Gonzalez 178 + 10 Laps 9. P1 #1 Audi Lotterer/Treluyer/Fassler 178 + 6.904s 10. P2 #24 Morgan Pla/Brundle/H Hansson 177 + 11 Laps 11. P2 #42 Zytek Krumm/Mardenborough/Ordonez 177 + 5m30.133s 12. P2 #38 Zytek Dolan/Turvey/Luhr 177 + 5m42.069s 13. P2 #46 Oreca Thiriet/Badey/Martin 176 + 12 Laps 14. P2 #49 Oreca P-Companc/Kaffer/Minassian 176 + 3m46.931s 15. P2 #26 Oreca Rusinov/Martin/Conway 175 + 13 Laps 16. P2 #43 Morgan Gachnang/Mailleux/Lombard 175 + 7m05.214s 17. P2 #47 Morgan Imperatori/Howson/Tung 173 + 15 Laps 18. P2 #32 Lotus Holzer/Kraihamer/Charouz 172 + 16 Laps 19. P2 #33 HPD Tucker/Franchitti/Briscoe 171 + 17 Laps 20. GTP #92 Porsche Lieb/Richard Lietz/Dumas 171 + 2m04.570s 21. GTP #99 Aston Makowiecki/Senna/Bell 171 + 4m04.165s 22. P2 #48 Oreca Hartley/Chandhok/Patterson 170 + 18 Laps 23. GTP #97 Aston Mucke/Turner/Dumbreck 170 + 14.877s 24. GTP #91 Porsche Bergmeister/Pilet/Bernhard 170 + 2m43.883s 25. GTP #51 Ferrari Bruni/Fisichella/Malucelli 170 + 4m10.365s 26. GTP #71 Ferrari Beretta/Kobayashi/Vilander 169 + 19 Laps 27. GTP #74 Corvette Gavin/Milner/Westbrook 169 + 1m31.948s 28. GTP #73 Corvette Garcia/Magnussen/Taylor 168 + 20 Laps 29. GTP #98 Aston Dalla Lana/Lamy/Auberlen 168 + 6.966s 30. P2 #36 Alpine Ragues/Panciatici/Gommendy 168 + 4m14.345s 31. P2 #34 Oreca Frey/Niederhauser/Bleekemolen 168 + 4m16.098s 32. P2 #45 Morgan Nicolet/Merlin/Mondolot 167 + 21 Laps 33. P2 #41 Zytek Rossi/K-Smith/Lux 167 + 8.093s 34. GTA #76 Porsche Narac/Vernay/Bourret 166 + 22 Laps 35. GTP #93 SRT Wittmer/Kendall/Bomarito 165 + 23 Laps 36. GTA #61 Ferrari Gerber/Griffin/Cioci 165 + 1.967s 37. GTA #55 Ferrari Perazzini/O'Young/Case 165 + 26.168s 38. GTA #77 Porsche Dempsey/Foster/Long 165 + 4m06.273s 39. GTP #53 SRT Farnbacher/Goossens/Dalziel 164 + 24 Laps 40. GTA #88 Porsche Ried/Roda/Ruberti 164 + 13.743s 41. P2 #40 Oreca Dagoneau/Downs/Younessi 164 + 4m04.846s 42. GTA #96 Aston Goethe/Campbell-Walter/Hall 164 + 4m15.736s 43. GTA #50 Corvette Bornhauser/Canal/Taylor 163 + 25 Laps 44. GTA #75 Porsche Collard/Perrodo/Crubile 163 + 10.143s 45. GTA #67 Porsche Gibon/Milesi/Henzler 163 + 2m35.035s 46. GTP #66 Ferrari Bertolini/Faisal/Qubaisi 161 + 27 Laps 47. GTA #81 Ferrari Potolicchio/Aguas/Bright 154 + 34 Laps 48. P2 #39 Lola Porta/Brandela/Raffin 148 + 40 Laps 49. GTA #54 Ferrari Mallegol/Bachelier/Blank 147 + 41 Laps 50. GTA #70 Corvette MacNeil/Rodrigues/Dumas 140 + 48 Laps 51. P2 #30 Lola Mowlem/Burgess/Hirschi 153 Retired 52. GTA #57 Ferrari Krohn/Jonsson/Mediani 111 Retired 53. P2 #25 Oreca Graves/Hamilton/Nakano 101 Retired 54. P2 #28 Lola Giroix/Haezebrouck/Ihara 22 Retired 55. P2 #31 Lotus Weeda/Rossiter/Bouchut 17 Retired 56. GTA #95 Aston Simonsen/Nygaard/Poulsen 2 Retired 
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LM24 H14: Lead battle remains tense as Toyota closes on Audi

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