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Le Mans 24 Hours: 10 Hours: Aston Martin leads GT classes

No change at the top as Aston Martin begins to take control of both GT classes after ten hours of racing
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Aston Martin continues to lead the closely-fought LM GTE classes, despite an engine problem for the formerly category-leading #98 Vantage V8.

Having slowly worked its way into contention over the course of the race, Stefan Mucke had forged a lead over the AF Corse Ferrari before it pitted, with the #74 Corvette now up to second position but almost 40secs behind.

Porsche is fourth in class with the #92 911, but the #91 entry lost 40mins with a fuel pressure problem before it pitted again just before the end of the hour.

In LM GTE Am, Aston Martin ran 1-2 until #98 car pitted from the lead with smoke billowing from the engine. As such, the all-Danish #95 Aston Martin leads the class, well ahead of the SMP Ferrari in second and the #88 Proton Porsche.

At the top of the leaderboard, the #7 Toyota still leads over the #2 Audi having extended its lead during the 12th scheduled pit-stops. Alex Wurz remains in the Toyota, while Andre Lotterer and Tom Kristensen are the new pilots of the chasing Audis.

The #35 OAK Ligier continues to lead LMP2, 40secs ahead of the Signatech Alpine, while the #46 TDS Ligier is due to drop back after being given a stop-go penalty for pit-lane speeding.

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Live text commentary recap of Hour 10: Key moments in bold

The #46 TDS Ligier is in the pit lane to serve its penalty and comes out now fourth in class, having just remained on the lead lap of the LMP2 class. The Race Performance Oreca is back up to third.

The #91 Porsche is back into the pit lane and being wheeled into the garage... looks like another long stint off-track for the car

Oh dear, bad news for the #46 TDS Ligier, currently running third in the LMP2 class - it has been given a penalty for speeding in the pit lane. A 35secs stop-go has been issued, which will put it off the lead lap

It's a fast stop too - less than a minute compared to Audi's 1min 25secs stop -, but Wurz has stayed in the car

Following suit, the leading #7 Toyota pits from the lead

Andre Lotterer is back in the car and is on his way

The #2 Audi comes into the pit lane from second place, having slipped 1min 55secs off the leading #7 Toyota

In fact, all three brand-new Ligier JS' haven't missed a beat, which is an encouraging sign for the French manufacturer as it works its way back into sportscar racing

It's been off the track today, but the OAK Team Asia Ligier is still going fairly strong, eighth in class

It means the all-Danish #95 Aston Martin looks set to take the lead in class, a lap ahead of the #72 SMP Ferrari in third

Drama down at Aston Martin, the LM GTE Am leading Vantage has pulled into the pit lane with smoke pouring from the engine. The car is wheeled into the garage as team members pore over the engine bay

And just as I say that, he has blasted past Jann Mardenborough to move into 7th overall. Next up, the #12 Rebellion, a lap up the road

Lapierre is in eighth now and almost on top of the leading LMP2 car, which means we will have 7 LMP1 cars inside the top seven again

Audi are debuting all-new 'laser' lights this year to help its drivers see further in the dark. It's pioneering stuff and they look great on track, though interestingly the high intensity means they always appear to be flickering when viewed on a TV screen

Marc Gene pits the #1 Audi from third position and Kristensen takes over

If you want to try this ride, you'll have to bring your own chair... Tom Kristensen waits for the #1 Audi to enter the pit lane with his specially moulded seat in hand

The problem for the #91 Porsche GT, meanwhile, was a fuel pressure issue - it was in the pits for 41mins!

Lapierre brings the #8 Toyota back into the top ten. The Frenchman is battling with balance issues on the TS040 Hybrid, a legacy of its earlier crash most likely

Webber is out of the car - and gesticulating fairly furiously about something -, as Bernhard gets in the car

The #20 Porsche of Mark Webber enters the pits

The yellows are out at Michelin once again, not we aren't sure why as yet

Though it is well represented here with 17 entries, the LMP2 class has been pretty thin in FIA WEC this season, with most of these entries coming from European LMS. Just four compete in WEC LMP2 full-time, but three of them are already out and the fourth - the #27 SMP machine - is 12 laps off the class lead. However, the team is still set to score points for its WEC campaign, unlike its rivals, if it keeps going

Lapierre in the #8 Toyota is now on the same lap as the three LMP2 cars ahead of him and lapping around 10secs quicker, so should be up into the overall top ten shortly

The #91 Porsche is finally back out on track after a very long stay in the it lane that has all-but-scuppered its hopes of winnning the GTE Pro class

After that round of pit-stops, Wurz in the #7 Toyota has increased his lead at the front. The Austrian is now circulating 1min 45secs ahead of Marcel Fassler in the #2 Audi. Genne in the #1 Audi is around 3mins out of contention

The Signatech Alpine has pitted from second in the LMP2 class, promoting the #34 Race Performance Oreca and the #46 TDS Ligier into the top three

There are a couple of English drivers out there that are missing the England game - Jann Mardenborough and Oliver Turvey will have to watch the highlights

The #91 Porsche is still in the pit lane. Patrick Pilet has refused to move and remains poised to get out again... trouble is, he has already been there for a good 30mins now and seems to be going nowhere quickly

Jani also pitted the #14 Porsche

The leading #7 follows suit and pits on the hour

Tagged as: Ferrari , Toyota , Aston Martin , Audi , Porsche , Oreca , LMP2 , LMP1 , WEC

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Darren Turner (GBR) Aston Martin
Darren Turner (GBR) Aston Martin
Darren Turner (GBR) Aston Martin
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Martyn Pass (GBR) Audi
Juan Pablo Montoya (COL) Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid
Juan Pablo Montoya (COL) Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid
Juan Pablo Montoya (COL) Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid
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Devon Modell (GBR) Aston Modell
Devon Modell (GBR) Aston Modell
Devon Modell (GBR) Aston Modell
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Devon Modell (GBR) Aston Modell
Alex Lynn (GBR) Toyota

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