It’s the 24 Hours of Le Mans, at the Circuit de la Sarthe in France. With about 14 hours down and 10 left, Audi finds themselves in a precarious situation. After last year’s outstanding, down-to-the-wire victory against Peugeot’s aggressive 908HDi’s with victory going to the R10 TDI driven by Tom Kristensen, Allan McNish and Rinaldo Capello, everyone has been excited to see how the R15 TDI would stack up against the Peugeots this year at the hands of many of the same drivers.
However, by the time darkness set in on Le Mans Audi #2 was out of the race after an issue with the rear of the car caused it to step out of line under heavy braking into the Porsche Esses and ultimately ended up sliding backwards into the barriers, taking the car out of the race. Audi #3 suffered from mechanical problems and now leaves them 42 laps down on the leader, a Peugeot, in the LMP1 category. So, as darkness set over Le Mans, Audi seems to find themselves under a dark cloud.
However, as dawn approaches in France, Audi #1 with the same winning team as last year is trying to hold its own in third place behind two of the Peugeot 908’s. But, reports of turbos overheating on the R15 TDI #1 have been coming out, ironically, at the same time one of the Peugeots went into the pits for reliability issues. We’re hoping Audi can hang in there for the last half of the race – perhaps due to attrition also allowing Audi #3 to move further back up the ladder.
(Picture Source: No Grip Racing)