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16 Hour report: Rain affects overnight running at 24 Hours of Le Mans

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24 Hours of Le Mans
WEC

UPDATE AFTER 16H - 8.00 AM

Heavy rainfall saw much of the overnight running at the 24 Hours of Le Mans take place behind the safety car amid tricky conditions.

The safety car was deployed at 3.45am during the poor weather, but was set to end shortly after 8am as rainfall stopped. The #6 car, driven by Kévin Estre, André Lotterer and Laurens Vanthoor, was running second with eight hours remaining, and was the highest running of the Porsche Penske Motorsport cars behind the two Toyotas. The #8 and Estre are in the same Safety Car, split by less than a second. Estre had been on the charge before the race was neutralised, and was quickly pursuing the leading #8 Toyota before his progress was halted. The #6 car inherited the lead when the leader pitted around 3.50am, but pitted soon after and as others stopped, returned to second place. It was again promoted to the lead almost three hours later, before stopping once more shortly before 7am to hand control back to the Toyota.

Further back in the running, the #5 Porsche 963, shared by Matt Campbell, Michael Christensen and Frédéric Makowiecki, is currently running in 10th around the 200-lap mark. The sister #4 entry, piloted by Mathieu Jaminet, Felipe Nasr and Nick Tandy, is in 17th. It was earlier struggling with a windscreen wiper issue but managed to continue in the race. The car briefly found the gravel near the Dunlop bridge shortly after 2.30am, but Tandy avoided the barriers and carried on.

Customer Racing

The two Hertz Team JOTA entries are running in sixth and 11th, with the #38 entry shared by Jenson Button, Phil Hanson and Oliver Rasmussen ahead of its sister #12 car, piloted by Callum Ilott, Norman Nato and Will Stevens.

After its earlier door issue, the #99 Proton Competition Porsche 963, driven by Julien Andlauer, Neel Jani and Harry Tincknell, is running in 19th in the Hypercar class.

LMGT3

Manthey Racing is continuing its charge for victory, running in 1-2 at 8am. The #92 Manthey PureRxcing car of Klaus Bachler, Alex Malykhin and Joel Sturm led the way into the morning, with the sister #91 Manthey EMA entry of Richard Lietz, Morris Schuring and Yasser Shahin in second. The #92 has been leading since last night, having started the race in second, while the #91 had moved up to second under cover of darkness.

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