Hour 14 at Le Mans: Porsche loses GTE Pro lead with exhaust issue
The sun has risen at the Circuit de La Sarthe, and overnight, the race leading #92 Porsche 911 RSR of Kevin Estre, Michael Christensen and Laurens Vanthoor has suffered a significant delay after encountering an exhaust issue in the thirteenth hour.
Kevin Estre brought the car in for what initially looked like a brake failure, but was eventually rolled back out five laps down in twelfth position in GTE Pro, losing what was a strong shot at a second straight GTE Pro victory
The class lead is currently in the hands of the car it had been battling with: the #51 AF Corse Ferrari of Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado and Daniel Serra. They are being chased by the #91 Porsche of Richard Lietz and the #63 Corvette of Jan Magnussen.
Meanwhile, the two Toyotas continue to do battle up front, but the #7 of Jose Maria Lopez now appears to have opened up a gap to the rival #8, which is being piloted by Kazuki Nakajima. Rebellion Racing's #3 R13-Gibson still holds third, a lap up over the only remaining SMP Racing car.
In LMP2, G-Drive has managed to retain the lead it had throughout the night. Job van Uitert, who did a good job extending that lead after midnight, is now back in the Aurus 01-Gibson and holds a significant lead over the chasing #36 Signatech Alpine of Andre Negrao, with title rivals Jackie Chan DC Racing in third with Gabriel Aubry piloting the #38.
In GTE Am, Aston Martin fans experienced further heartbreak as Euan Hankey beached the #90 TF Sport Vantage at Mulsanne Corner, ending their podium hopes after Charlie Eastwood had done a brilliant job to bring the car into contention earlier in the night.
Keating Motorsports continues to run uninterrupted in the lead, with Ben Keating significantly clear of Patrick Lindsey in the #56 Project One Porsche. JMW Motorsport continues to be in podium contention as Jeffrey Segal currently runs in third place in class