Toyota is facing up to its first notable issues in the 2021 Le Mans 24 Hours after the #8 GR010 Hybrid running second briefly stopped on course.
The first time the Toyota Gazoo Racing team has looked anything other than well on course for a dominant 1-2 result having opened up a four lap lead over the fight for third, Buemi was forced to bring his car to a halt on the Mulsanne straight.
After a shutdown and reboot the car was on its way again, with the trio of Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima and Brendon Hartley now looking to manage it to the end of the race, thus potentially putting an end to any hopes of challenging the leading #7 car now.
For now the two cars remain on the lead lap but though the same issue is reportedly hanging like a cloud over the #7 Toyota, the margin between the two stands at around two minutes.
In third, Alpine led Glickenhaus in what has turned into an entertaining fight for best of the rest that could well be decided in the American team’s favour in a race that has seen it suffer few gremlins, get faster as it progresses and possess better fuel consumption than its more esteemed rival.
Team WRT continue to keep a stranglehold over LMP2 with a 1-2 position it has now held for several hours in the order #31 leading #41. The car driven by Charles Milesi, Ferdinand Habsburg and Robin Frijns has a healthy lead over the sister car, which in turn is coming under increasing pressure from the lesser fancied Jota car belonging to Tom Blomqvist, Sean Gelael and Stoffel Vandoorne.
Panis Racing, a recovering United Autosports and Interpol round out the top six in that class.
AF Corse Ferrari hold sway out front in GTE Pro with the #51 remaining firm after the erstwhile leading sister car belonging to Daniel Serra, Sam Bird and Miguel Molina lost time with technical issues.
As such, James Calado, Alessandro Pier Guidi and Come Ledogar have a plus-minute lead over the second place Corvette, with both of those holding a lap lead over the two factory Porsches.