LM24 Hour 3: Andre Lotterer maintains Audi's lead

Audi continued to stretch its advantage during the third hour of the Le Mans 24 Hours with Andre Lotterer holding a 50-second lead over Allan McNish

LM24 Hour 3: Andre Lotterer maintains Audi's lead

Despite losing the lead to Nicolas Lapierre's #7 Toyota during the overlap between pitstops, the Audis were never really troubled by the Japanese machines.

Behind Lotterer and McNish third is held by Lucas di Grassi, despite the Brazilian taking a trip through the gravel at the exit of Indianapolis and losing a handful of seconds.

Anthony Davidson is now the leading Toyota driver in fourth; Lapierre having stopped for around 30s by the side of the track with an as-yet unidentified technical problem.

The hybrid machines are the only ones left on the lead lap; Nick Heidfeld now driving the best of the normally-aspirated cars in sixth in his Rebellion Lola-Toyota.

The battle for the lead of LMP2 is ultra-close. Alex Brundle took over the leading #24 machine from Olivier Pla and Ricardo Gonzalez is now behind the wheel of the second-placed #35 car.

Ryan Briscoe's Level 5 HPD and Mike Conway's G-Drive/Delta-ADR ORECA Nissan are keeping up the chase within 90s of the leaders.

Darren Turner continues to lead GTE Pro for Aston Martin, his 10s advantage being maintained.

His team-mate Rob Bell passed Romain Dumas' Porsche for second after the second pitstops with Jorg Bergmeister holding on to fourth in the sister Manthey-run 911 RSR.

There was a nervous moment for Corvette driver Tommy Milner as the rain became more intense towards the end of the hour.

The American went off into gravel at Turn 1 - followed by Bill Auberlen's #98 Aston Martin - and was forced to deliberately spin as he tried to rejoin the track in a bid to avoid T-boning the sister car of Antonio Garcia.

A left-rear puncture for Pascal Gibon robbed the #67 Imsa Porsche of the lead in GTE Am; the Frenchman having relieved Wolf Henzler of driving duties early in the hour.

Gibon had been battling with Marco Cioci's #61 AF Corse Ferrari prior to then, but the Italian machine now holds a 26-second lead.

POSITIONS AFTER THREE HOURS Pos Cl Car Drivers Laps Gap 1. P1 #1 Audi Lotterer/Treluyer/Fassler 40 2. P1 #2 Audi Kristensen/McNish/Duval 40 + 49.177s 3. P1 #3 Audi Gene/Jarvis/di Grassi 40 + 55.703s 4. P1 #8 Toyota Davidson/Sarrazin/Buemi 40 + 1m21.831s 5. P1 #7 Toyota Wurz/Lapierre/Nakajima 40 + 2m09.872s 6. P1 #12 Lola Prost/Jani/Heidfeld 39 + 1 Lap 7. P1 #21 HPD Leventis/Kane/Watts 39 + 1m54.146s 8. P1 #13 Lola Beche/Belicchi/Cheng 39 + 2m43.765s 9. P2 #24 Morgan Pla/Brundle/H Hansson 38 + 2 Laps 10. P2 #35 Morgan Baguette/Plowman/Gonzalez 38 + 51.521s 11. P2 #41 Zytek Rossi/K-Smith/Lux 38 + 57.097s 12. P2 #33 HPD Tucker/Franchitti/Briscoe 38 + 1m13.238s 13. P2 #46 Oreca Thiriet/Badey/Martin 38 + 1m19.051s 14. P2 #26 Oreca Rusinov/Martin/Conway 38 + 1m23.275s 15. P2 #38 Zytek Dolan/Turvey/Luhr 38 + 1m26.266s 16. P2 #49 Oreca P-Companc/Kaffer/Minassian 38 + 1m51.557s 17. P2 #34 Oreca Frey/Niederhauser/Bleekemolen 38 + 2m11.271s 18. P2 #42 Zytek Krumm/Mardenborough/Ordonez 37 + 3 Laps 19. P2 #32 Lotus Holzer/Kraihamer/Charouz 37 + 5.716s 20. P2 #36 Alpine Ragues/Panciatici/Gommendy 37 + 1m15.190s 21. P2 #43 Morgan Gachnang/Mailleux/Lombard 37 + 1m20.373s 22. GTP #97 Aston Mucke/Turner/Dumbreck 37 + 1m30.748s 23. GTP #99 Aston Makowiecki/Senna/Bell 37 + 1m41.875s 24. GTP #92 Porsche Lieb/Richard Lietz/Dumas 37 + 2m03.422s 25. GTP #91 Porsche Bergmeister/Pilet/Bernhard 36 + 4 Laps 26. P2 #30 Lola Mowlem/Burgess/Hirschi 36 + 24.433s 27. GTP #71 Ferrari Beretta/Kobayashi/Vilander 36 + 34.568s 28. P2 #48 Oreca Hartley/Chandhok/Patterson 36 + 41.913s 29. GTP #51 Ferrari Bruni/Fisichella/Malucelli 36 + 46.254s 30. P2 #45 Morgan Nicolet/Merlin/Mondolot 36 + 54.404s 31. GTP #53 SRT  Farnbacher/Goossens/Dalziel 36 + 57.810s 32. GTP #73 Corvette Garcia/Magnussen/Taylor 36 + 1m01.743s 33. GTP #98 Aston Dalla Lana/Lamy/Auberlen 36 + 1m02.419s 34. GTA #61 Ferrari Gerber/Griffin/Cioci 36 + 1m13.943s 35. GTP #74 Corvette Gavin/Milner/Westbrook 36 + 1m14.394s 36. GTA #55 Ferrari Perazzini/O'Young/Case 36 + 2m51.923s 37. GTA #77 Porsche Dempsey/Foster/Long 36 + 3m42.496s 38. GTA #67 Porsche Gibon/Milesi/Henzler 35 + 5 Laps 39. GTA #75 Porsche Collard/Perrodo/Crubile 35 + 2m21.717s 40. GTP #93 SRT Wittmer/Kendall/Bomarito 35 + 2m42.599s 41. GTA #81 Ferrari Potolicchio/Aguas/Bright 35 + 3m08.382s 42. GTA #88 Porsche Ried/Roda/Ruberti 35 + 3m14.091s 43. P2 #40 Oreca Dagoneau/Downs/Younessi 35 + 3m20.137s 44. GTA #50 Corvette Bornhauser/Canal/Taylor 35 + 3m21.760s 45. GTA #96 Aston Goethe/Campbell-Walter/Hall 35 + 3m28.579s 46. GTA #76 Porsche Narac/Vernay/Bourret 35 + 3m35.936s 47. P2 #47 Morgan Imperatori/Howson/Tung 35 + 3m42.246s 48. GTA #57 Ferrari Krohn/Jonsson/Mediani 35 + 4m44.637s 49. P2 #39 Lola Porta/Brandela/Raffin 34 + 6 Laps 50. GTP #66 Ferrari Bertolini/Faisal/Qubaisi 34 + 21.508s 51. P2 #25 Oreca Graves/Hamilton/Nakano 34 + 45.748s 52. GTA #70 Corvette MacNeil/Rodrigues/Dumas 33 + 7 Laps 53. GTA #54 Ferrari Mallegol/Bachelier/Blank 33 + 2m01.533s 54. P2 #28 Lola Giroix/Haezebrouck/Ihara 19 + 21 Laps 55. P2 #31 Lotus Weeda/Rossiter/Bouchut 17 + 23 Laps 56. GTA #95 Aston Simonsen/Nygaard/Poulsen 2 Retired 
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LM24 H2: Audi opens up decisive advantage over Toyota
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