Ed Fahey, Le Mans correspondent
The survivors of the GT class at Le Mans are still racing as hard and as fast as they were at the start, with 2 Grand Prix distances or just over one American Le Mans Series distance left to go.
Of the nine GTE-Pro class cars that started, six remain and from eleven GTE-Am starters, eight cars are still in the hunt.
As this piece goes live the race is under the safety car after Allan McNish scattered debris at the Porsche curves
1. #51 AF Corse Ferrari F458 Italia – Gianmaria Bruni
2. #59 Luxury Racing Ferrari F458 Italia – Frederic Makowiecki +2 laps
3. #97 Aston Martin Racing Vantage V8 – Stefan Mucke + 3 laps
The order here remains unchanged, with the leading #51 putting 1 more lap on second place #59, and still lurking in 3rd is #97. Disaster almost striking the #59 though with Fred Makowiecki sliding on the oil that has just sent Marc Gene into the tyrewall at the Forza Motorsport chicanes.
Further down the field, the #73 Corvette, currently with Antonio Garcia onboard earlier overtook the #71 AF Corse Ferrari for 4th position, Jan Magnussen and Jordan Taylor on ‘an all or nothing’ charge getting one lap ahead of the Ferrari and five laps behind the 3rd place Aston Martin, so should any of the top three have big problems the Corvette could yet get a podium after a troublesome run. In 6th place in class and currently last overall (34th) is the #74 Corvette, with Oliver Gavin currently at the wheel. This car is almost 50 laps down to 33rd place, so unless other cars have major issues the cars position will not improve, transmission, engine and bodywork repairs hampering the cars progress when it once had held a commanding lead, although still lapping at race pace. Corvette Racings motto of ‘Take No Prisoners’ has never been so clearly emphasized.
1. #50 Larbre Competition Corvette C6R ZR1 – Pedro Lamy
2. #67 IMSA Performance Matmut Porsche 997 – Nicolas Armindo + 2 secs
3. #57 Krohn Racing Ferrari F458 Italia – Tracy Krohn + 5 laps
The closest battle of the race is still raging with no sign of a letup, 21 hours after the start with the gap measured in feet and not seconds, both cars running bumper to bumper and side by side on the Mulsanne straight. These cars are 5th and 6th overall in GTE, just behind the lead trio in Pro. The Porsche has made one more pitstop though, but the safety car period just called will decide this battle
In a very secure 3rd place is Krohn Racing, five laps down on 2nd but ten laps ahead of 4th, the remaining Flying Lizards Porsche currently with Seth Neiman onboard, which has got ahead of the #70 Corvette. In 6th place it remains the #55 JWA Avila Porsche, currently with Joel Camathias. 7th is Brian Vickers after a very dedicated run in the AF Waltrip Ferrari with the #83 JMB Racing Ferrari F458 which has remained mainly anonymous during the race, with Le Mans veteran Alain Ferte onboard.