Boullion closes in on leader Kristensen

Jean Christophe Boullion in the #16 Pescarolo Sport unlapped himself and joined the lead lap in his pursuit of the Champion Racing Audi R8 of Tom Kristensen.

The Pescarolo car had been chasing the leading Audi since the early hours of the morning and being on the same lap was the closest it had got so far since yesterday evening. Boullion was lapping on average four seconds faster than Kristensen but that was at the end of the Pescarolo driver's stint and he pitted just before the start of the 23rd hour. When he rejoined he was lapped, narrowly behind the Audi, but his first flying lap was still four seconds faster.

#58 Aston Martin Racing Aston Martin DBR9: Tomas Enge, Peter Kox, Pedro Lamy.
Photo by Tom Haapanen.

Peter Kox became the latest victim of a left-rear puncture as the now familiar sight of a white cloud coming from the back of a crawling car greeted the spectators shortly before the start of the 23rd hour at Le Mans. Kox toured his #58 Aston Martin slowly around to prevent the tyre from damaging the body work and consequently the tyre was replaced in under ninety seconds.

Stephaine Sarrazin led the GT1 class in the #59 Aston Martin but behind him the #58 Aston Martin, now driven by Tomas Enge, was pushing hard to shake off the Corvette Racing C6R of Max Papis in front of whom he had joined although Papis pushed the car as hard as it had been driven during the race in order to stay in touch with Enge.

Mike Rockenfeller was still leading the GT2 class in the Alex Job Racing Porsche GT3-RSR but Jorg Bergmeister had managed to pull the White Lightning Racing Porsche GT3-RSR up onto the same lap as the pair continued their race-long pursuit.

Flags were violently waving at Arnage with marshals actually standing on the track in order to divert the drivers away from a patch of oil that had been deposited on the entrance to the corner.

The RML MG Lola of Thomas Erdos, leading the LMP class, lost control under braking for Virage Ford at the end of the lap and spun off into the gravel. He was able to rejoin and cut across into the pitlane for an inspection.