Le Mans Hour 18: Toyota and Ferrari Lead at Three Quarter Distance

With 18 hours completed the #7 Toyota Gazoo Racing GR010 of Kamui Kobayashi is leading having completed 274 laps, nearly one lap ahead of the #8 Toyota of Sebastien Buemi.  Buemi slowed and stopped at the side of the track. The Swiss driver did a reset on the #8 GR010 at the top of the hour and was soon back up to speed.

The #36 Alpine Elf Matmut A480 of Andre Negrao is running third, four laps behind the Toyotas with the #708 Glickenhaus 007 LMH of Franck Mailleux in 4th,  38 seconds behind the Alpine.

The #51 AF Corse Ferrari is leading the LMGTE Pro class with Come Ledogar 70 seconds ahead of the #61 Corvette Racing C8.R of Jordan Taylor.  The #52 Ferrari had dropped back overnight with suspension failure and at the top of the 18thhour a puncture saw Sam Bird limping back to the pits with extensive front right bodywork damage from the flailing delaminated tyre.

Team WRT are running 1-2 in LMP2 with the #31 Oreca of Charles Milesi leading by 2m13s ahead of the #41 Oreca of Yifei Ye.  The #83 AF Corse Ferrari of reigning class champion Nicklas Nielsen is leading in LMGTE Am, 42 seconds ahead of the #33 TF Sport Aston Martin of Dylan Pereira.

  • Toyota Gazoo Racing continues to lead the 24 Hours of Le Mans as # 7 and #8 GR010 Hybrid Hypercars remain first and second respectively
  • #7 Toyota GR010 Hybrid now with Kamui Kobayashi at the wheel carves out over four-minute lead following various issues for sister No. 8 car
  • # 8 car – currently driven by Sebastien Buemi – reported vibrations in the car followed by refuelling issues meaning drivers aren’t able to carry out full stints before needing to pit
  • Team reported issue is getting worse with Toyota currently working hard to fix the issue ahead of race’s closing six hours
  • Alpine Elf Matmut remain third overall with Andre Negrao now at the wheel, the French squad regularly swapping positions following pit stops with the #708 Glickenhaus entry
  • Sister # 709 Glickenhaus 007 Hypercar steadily making progress up the overall leaderboard and is now up to eighth overall, but still remains over two laps down on sister car
  • AF Corse Ferrari still on top in LMGTE Pro, with # 51 car now around 20 seconds ahead of # 63 Corvette Racing entry still with Jordan Taylor at the wheel
  • Porsche GT Team #92 and # 91 911 RSR – 19s third and fourth in class respectively
  • Trouble for # 52 AF Corse Ferrari after a front-right puncture and bodywork damage with Sam Bird driving at the time. Car immediately goes to the pits for length repairs where it still remains
Corvette C8.R #63 driven by Antonio Garcia, Jordan Taylor, and Nicky Catsburg; Corvette C8.R (Richard Prince/Chevrolet Photo).
  • Belgian squad Team WRT continue to dominate LMP2 category, with # 31 Oreca 07 Gibson currently 40 seconds ahead of sister car
  • Category leading # 31 car sees Robin Frijns hands car over to Charles Milesi in 17th hour, with Frenchman putting in solid lap times to extend lead over sister car
  • The battle for third position has been raging between hours 12 and 18 with JOTA and WRT regularly swapping positions for the final podium position
  • # 28 JOTA driven by Sean Geleal currently third ahead of # 65 Panis Racing entry and James Allen
  • Trouble-free few hours for Inter Europol Competition who currently occupy P5, one spot ahead of the # 23 United Autosports car which is sixth in class
  • Heartache for # 22 United Autosports USA after car is brought in with alternator issue and lengthy pit stop then leads to team replacing battery. Car drops down the order with # 22 now back of the class
  • #25 G-Drive Racing officially retired following impact at Dunlop Chicane in the early hours. It marks the third retirement in the category so far including Richard Mille Racing Team and the #32 United Autosports USA entry
  • #83 AF Corse still on top in LMGTE Am now with young gun Nicklas Nielsen at the wheel
  • TF Sport Aston Martin takes advantage of a drive-through-penalty given to category leading #83 car but British team are still over two minutes behind the leading Ferrari
  • #80 Iron Lynx Ferrari 488 GTE Evo hold third in class, with Rino Mastronardi now back in the car
  • # 88 Dempsey Proton Racing Porsche 911 RSR – 19 pits with puncture and damage, dropping the team to 12th in class

Hour 18 Standings