June 23, 2013

Audi wins Le Mans race marred by driver's death

The Associated Press

(Continued from page 1)

However, speed is no guarantee of victory. Reliability matters just as much in a competition won by the team that completes the most laps in 24 hours, with up to three drivers alternating.

Just when Audi looked irresistible on a track that was drying out, two of its cars faced reliability issues in the seventh hour.

Benoit Treluyer's Audi No. 1 was stuck in the garage for more than 40 minutes because of technical trouble to fall out of contention, finishing fifth. The Audi No. 3 driven by Jarvis had a puncture and later had his front bodywork changed. Jarvis' Audi No. 3 overtook Nicolas Lapierre's Toyota No. 7 in the 22nd hour to make the podium.

In the next-to-last hour, Lapierre made a mistake, skidding off the slippery track at the Porsche curves to crash into the tire barrier. But Lapierre limped back into the garage and finished fourth.

In the 12th hour, Burgess' HVM Status GP No. 30 shattered into pieces in a crash.

"It was obviously a great relief when we saw him walk away from the accident," HVM Status GP technical director Rob Arnott said. "Many of the components are completely destroyed but the safety cell and everything else stood up to the impact incredibly well and it all absorbed the impact."

Martin Plowman, Ricardo Gonzalez and Bertrand Baguette finished seventh overall in Morgan-Nissan No. 35 but topped the LMP2 class.

Marc Lieb, Richard Lietz and Romain Dumas won the GTE-Pro class in Porsche No. 92, while Raymond Narac, Christophe Bourret and Jean-Karl Vernay finished first in the GTE-Am category at the wheel of Porsche No. 76.

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