Andre Lotterer has taken over the lead #2 Audi R18 from Benoit Treluyer for the final run to the checkered flag, leading Peugeot's Sebastien Bourdais by 18 seconds.
At the beginning of the hour Treluyer came up behind Anthony Davidson in the fourth-placed #7 Peugeot, and after repeated attempts to pass were rebutted rather stiffly he eased back slightly under instruction from the team and let Davidson go on his way. Meanwhile, an ominous warning flashed up on the timing screens indicating that the stewards had requested an audience with Audi Sport's team manager.
At 11:18 Treluyer completed his epic 3hr20m and his exhausted tires - which had been with him all the way - were also removed when he handed over to Lotterer for the remaining distance. Lotterer departed the pits seconds after Bourdais flashed by in the lead, then took over at the front when Bourdais made his routine stop 20 minutes later.
The #8 and #7 Peugeot 908s continued to run in isolation in third and fourth places respectively, two and four laps down, piloted by Franck Montagny and Anthony Davidson. At the tail end of the hour the #2 Audi once again found itself baulked behind a Peugeot, this time by Montagny, to the palpable disgruntlement of Audi Sport boss Wolfgang Ullrich.
The leading gas-powered LMP1, the #16 Pescarolo-Judd, has been keeping the ORECA Peugeot honest as the cars circulate on the same lap, swapping fifth and sixth places when they make their respective pit stops. In the past hour Loic Duval has climbed aboard the ORECA car and put the hammer down, lapping regularly in the 3m30s region. The sole remaining Rebellion Lola-Toyota is a further lap behind in seventh overall, driven by Jeroen Bleekemolen.
LMP2 leader Tom Kimber-Smith is eighth overall in the Greaves Zytek, four laps ahead of nearest rival Franck Mailleux in the #26 Signatech ORECA-Nissan and with the Lola-Aston Martin of Vanina Ickx separating them in the overall classification. At the turn of the hour Mailleux suddenly slowed as he crossed the line and limped back to the garage with a deflated rear left tyre.
There was a change in the GTE Pro order as the #51 Ferrari was stymied by a clunky pitstop and then refused to fire up immediately when Toni Vilander tried to leave. Antonio Garcia now leads in the #73 Corvette by a slim margin from Vilander, with Dirk Muller in third for BMW after overhauling the #77 Porsche.
In GTE Am Julien Canal leads by a lap from Larbre teammate Christophe Bourret.
- Jan Magnussen lost control of the GTE Pro-leading #74 Chevrolet Corvette and crashed into the #63 Proton Porsche during the 17th hour, putting both cars out.
- Jean-Christophe Boullion crashed the Rebellion Lola-Toyota in the 14th hour at the Porsche Curves. He had been running eighth at the time of the shunt.
- Mike Rockenfeller was taken to hospital following a frightening accident that totally destroyed the #1 Audi in the seventh hour of the race. The German had been running third when he made contact with a GTE Ferrari at kink after Mulsanne. Audi later confirmed that the German would be kept in overnight for observation but that he was okay.
- The #3 Audi of Allan McNish crashed out of the race in the first hour having just taken second position. The Scot collected the #58 Luxury Racing Ferrari in the right-hander after the Dunlop Bridge. The heavy impact destroyed the car and McNish was taken to hospital for precautionary checks, but was later released with an all-clear.
- Both Aston Martin AMR Ones ran into trouble on the first lap of the race. Darren Turner spinning with mechanical trouble and Adrian Fernandez stopping out on the Mulsanne. The #007 car of Turner was recovered to the pits where it was discovered an alternator belt tensioner was to blame.
POSITIONS AFTER 21 HOURS
Pos Car Team Class Gap
1. #2 Audi Audi Sport Team Joest (LMP1)
2. #9 Peugeot Team Peugeot Total (LMP1) + 1 Lap
3. #8 Peugeot Peugeot Sport Total (LMP1) + 2 Laps
4. #7 Peugeot Peugeot Sport Total (LMP1) + 4 Laps
5. #10 Peugeot Team Oreca-Matmut (LMP1) + 12 Laps
6. #16 Pescarolo Pescarolo Team (LMP1) + 12 Laps
7. #12 Lola Rebellion Racing (LMP1) + 14 Laps
8. #41 Zytek Greaves Motorsport (LMP2) + 22 Laps
9. #22 Lola Kronos Racing (LMP1) + 23 Laps
10. #26 Oreca Signatech Nissan (LMP2) + 27 Laps
11. #33 Lola Level 5 Motorsports (LMP2) + 29 Laps
12. #73 Corvette Corvette Racing (GTEP) + 35 Laps
13. #51 Ferrari AF Corse (GTEP) + 35 Laps
14. #49 OAK OAK Racing (LMP2) + 35 Laps
15. #36 HPD RML (LMP2) + 36 Laps
16. #56 BMW BMW Motorsport (GTEP) + 37 Laps
17. #77 Porsche Team Felbermayr-Proton (GTEP) + 37 Laps
18. #55 BMW BMW Motorsport (GTEP) + 38 Laps
19. #76 Porsche IMSA Performance Matmut (GTEP) + 38 Laps
20. #80 Porsche Flying Lizard Motorsports (GTEP) + 39 Laps
21. #40 Oreca Race Performance (LMP2) + 44 Laps
22. #50 Corvette Larbre Competition (GTEA) + 44 Laps
23. #70 Porsche Larbre Competition (GTEA) + 45 Laps
24. #65 Lotus Lotus Jetalliance (GTEP) + 52 Laps
25. #83 Ferrari JMB Racing (GTEA) + 52 Laps
26. #35 OAK OAK Racing (LMP2) + 54 Laps
27. #75 Porsche Prospeed Competition (GTEP) + 55 Laps
28. #66 Ferrari JMW Motorsport (GTEP) + 57 Laps
29. #68 Ford Robertson Racing (GTEA) + 59 Laps
30. #44 Norma Extr (LMP2) + 103 Laps
31. #74 Corvette Corvette Racing (GTEP) + 95 Laps
32. #81 Porsche Flying Lizard Motorsports (GTEA) + 95 Laps
33. #48 Oreca Team Oreca-Matmut (LMP2) + 106 Laps
34. #63 Porsche Proton Competition (GTEA) + 107 Laps
35. #13 Lola Rebellion Racing (LMP1) Retired
36. #61 Ferrari AF Corse (GTEA) + 118 Laps
37. #59 Ferrari Luxury Racing (GTEP) + 123 Laps
38. #71 Ferrari AF Corse (GTEP) + 128 Laps
39. #88 Porsche Team Felbermayr-Proton (GTEP) + 137 Laps
40. #42 HPD Strakka Racing (LMP2) Retired
41. #60 Aston Gulf AMR Middle East (GTEA) Retired
42. #39 Lola PeCom Racing (LMP2) Retired
43. #89 Ferrari Hankook Team Farnbacher (GTEP) Retired
44. #58 Ferrari Luxury Racing (GTEP) + 170 Laps
45. #64 Lotus Lotus Jetalliance (GTEP) Retired
46. #57 Ferrari Krohn Racing (GTEA) Retired
47. #24 OAK OAK Racing (LMP1) Retired
48. #1 Audi Audi Sport Team Joest (LMP1) Retired
49. #5 Oreca Hope Racing (LMP1) Retired
50. #62 Ferrari CRS Racing (GTEA) Retired
51. #15 OAK OAK Racing (LMP1) Retired
52. #79 Aston Jota (GTEP) Retired
53. #20 Zytek Quifel-ASM Team (LMP1) Retired
54. #3 Audi Audi Sport North America (LMP1) Retired
55. #007 AMR-One Aston Martin Racing (LMP1) Retired
56. #009 AMR-One Aston Martin Racing (LMP1) Retired