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Disaster for Toyota gives Porsche the lead at Le Mans in hour 10

Toyota garage Le Mans 2017

Porsche claimed the lead of the 2017 Le Mans 24 Hours during the 10th hour of the race after the leading Toyota ground to a halt with a suspected clutch problem.

A safety car caused by Olivier Pla spinning and spraying gravel all over the track out of Arnage had increased the #7 Toyota's advantage to over two minutes.

But just as the safety car period ended, Kamui Kobayashi slowed going across the startline.

With the whole lap to complete, he was unable to get the TS050 back to the pits by the top of the hour.

This has given Nick Tandy in the #1 Porsche an advantage of over a lap over the #9 Toyota of Nicolas Lapierre.

#7 Toyota stops Le Mans 2017

Kobayashi is still classified third and after a long delay was able to get the car back moving, before stopping again and climbing out at the side of the track.

There was some better news for Toyota as its #8 machine finally returned to the track after lengthy repairs following a front motor problem.

It is 30 laps down, and 11 laps behind the recovering #2 Porsche of Earl Bamber that will take over third in class.

REBELLION STILL IN CHARGE IN LMP2

Rebellion Racing continues to run first and second in LMP2, with the #31 entry of Nicolas Prost regaining the advantage it lost by pitting under the safety car soon after the restart.

The sister #13 car of Mathias Beche is seven seconds behind, with the #38 Jackie Chan DC ORECA of Thomas Laurent running third after briefly leading during the restart phase.

While the top three cars still have a big advantage, the fourth-placed #25 Manor ORECA of Simon Trummer managed to get back onto the lead lap.

The best of the lapped cars is the #35 Signatech Alpine of Andre Negrao in fifth place.

The second Manor ORECA, the #25 car of Jean-Eric Vergne, runs seventh after having a few laps in the lead early on and is one place ahead of the best non-ORECA, the #32 United Autosports Ligier of Filipe Albuquerque.

SAFETY CAR MUDDLES GTE PRO BATTLE

Aston Martin ran one-two for the first time since the fourth hour, as Marco Sorensen passed Ford's Harry Tincknell for second place in the puncture-delayed #95 Vantage.

Ford then suffered further woe as it had to bring the #67 car into the pits during a safety car deployment, which dropped it well clear of the leading group.

Olivier Pla spun the #66 Ford into the gravel run-off at the left-hander after Indianapolis, briefly beaching the car, and after it was towed out and restarted it deposited gravel over the track. This was deemed worthy of deploying the safety cars so that the detritus could be swept away.

The full-course caution lasted 30 minutes, during which Chip Ganassi Racing brought Tincknell in for a full service and to hand over to Luis Derani - who then had to queue at the pit exit for the next safety car to come past.

That meant when the track went green, Derani was in 10th place behind team-mate Tony Kanaan in the #68 Ford, also stuck behind the 'wrong' safety car.

The Astons then pitted shortly before the turn of the hour, enabling James Calado to take the lead in the #51 AF Corse Ferrari, running ahead of Dirk Werner in the #92 Porsche.

The erstwhile leader re-emerged fourth on track, behind Miguel Molina's #71 Ferrari, with the #95 sixth.

The situation remains fluid since circumstances have placed many of the frontrunners on asynchronous pit schedules while running very closely on track.

The #84 JMW Ferrari survived the full-course caution with its GTE Am lead intact, still running ahead of the #90 Aston with the #77 Porsche now seemingly their only meaningful opposition.

POSITIONS AFTER 10 HOURS

PosClassCarDriversLapsGap
1LMP1#1 PorscheJani, Lotterer, Tandy158
2LMP1#9 ToyotaLapierre, Kunimoto, Lopez157+ 1 Lap
3LMP1#7 ToyotaConway, Kobayashi, Sarrazin154+ 4 Laps
4LMP2#31 OrecaProst, Canal, Senna149+ 9 Laps
5LMP2#13 OrecaPiquet Jr, H. Hansson, Beche149+ 8.580s
6LMP2#38 OrecaTung, Laurent, Jarvis149+ 49.276s
7LMP2#25 OrecaGonzalez, Trummer, Petrov149+ 2m33.979s
8LMP2#35 AlpinePanciatici, Ragues, Negrao148+ 10 Laps
9LMP2#40 OrecaAllen, Matelli, Bradley148+ 2m15.146s
10LMP2#24 OrecaGraves, Hirschi, Vergne148+ 2m15.446s
11LMP2#32 LigierOwen, De Sadeleer, Albuquerque148+ 2m33.009s
12LMP2#37 OrecaCheng, Gommendy, Brundle148+ 2m35.376s
13LMP2#47 DallaraLacorte, Sernagiotto, Belicchi146+ 12 Laps
14LMP2#23 LigierBarthez, Buret, Berthon145+ 13 Laps
15LMP2#21 OrecaHedman, Hanley, Rosenqvist144+ 14 Laps
16LMP2#34 LigierMoore, Hanson, Chandhok144+ 15.174s
17LMP2#28 OrecaPerrodo, Vaxiviere, Collard144+ 2m43.708s
18LMP2#39 OrecaGuibbert, Trouillet, Winslow143+ 15 Laps
19LMP2#29 DallaraLammers, Van Eerd, Barrichello142+ 16 Laps
20LMP2#33 LigierNicolet, Nicolet, Maris140+ 18 Laps
21LMP1#2 PorscheBernhard, Bamber, Hartley139+ 19 Laps
22GTE Pro#95 AstonThiim, Sorensen, Stanaway139+ 2m44.739s
23GTE Pro#97 AstonTurner, Adam, Serra138+ 20 Laps
24GTE Pro#91 PorscheLietz, Makowiecki, Pilet138+ 1m12.141s
25GTE Pro#51 FerrariCalado, Pier Guidi, Rugolo138+ 1m15.720s
26GTE Pro#92 PorscheChristensen, Estre, Werner138+ 1m16.658s
27GTE Pro#71 FerrariRigon, Bird, Molina138+ 1m18.743s
28GTE Pro#69 FordBriscoe, Westbrook, Dixon138+ 1m20.206s
29GTE Pro#63 ChevroletMagnussen, Garcia, Taylor138+ 2m29.404s
30GTE Pro#68 FordHand, Muller, Kanaan138+ 2m40.042s
31GTE Pro#67 FordPriaulx, Tincknell, Derani138+ 3m05.124s
32LMP2#17 LigierLafargue, Lafargue, Zollinger138+ 4m55.310s
33LMP2#27 DallaraAleshin, Sirotkin, Shaitar137+ 21 Laps
34GTE Am#84 FerrariSmith, Stevens, Vanthoor136+ 22 Laps
35GTE Am#90 AstonYoluc, Hankey, Bell136+ 2m40.480s
36GTE Am#77 PorscheRied, Cairoli, Dienst135+ 23 Laps
37GTE Am#62 FerrariMacneil, Sweedler, Bell135+ 1m25.386s
38GTE Am#55 FerrariCameron, Scott, Cioci135+ 1m32.987s
39LMP2#36 AlpineDumas, Menezes, Rao135+ 1m36.285s
40GTE Am#99 AstonHoward, Gunn, Bryant135+ 3m06.232s
41GTE Pro#64 ChevroletGavin, Milner, Fassler134+ 24 Laps
42GTE Am#65 FerrariNielsen, Balzan, Curtis134+ 13.104s
43GTE Am#93 PorscheLong, Al Faisal, Hedlund134+ 43.236s
44LMP2#45 LigierPatterson, Mcmurry, Capillaire134+ 49.269s
45GTE Am#61 FerrariMok, Sawa, Griffin134+ 1m30.487s
46LMP2#22 OrecaRojas, Hirakawa, Gutierrez134+ 2m32.388s
47GTE Am#83 FerrariKrohn, Jonsson, Bertolini133+ 25 Laps
48GTE Am#86 PorscheWainwright, Barker, Foster133+ 22.982s
49GTE Am#50 ChevroletRees, Brandela, Philippon132+ 26 Laps
50GTE Am#54 FerrariFlohr, Castellacci, Beretta132+ 4.620s
51GTE Pro#66 FordMucke, Pla, Johnson132+ 37.315s
52GTE Am#98 AstonDalla Lana, Lamy, Lauda132+ 1m32.185s
53GTE Am#60 FerrariWee, Katoh, Parente131+ 27 Laps
54LMP1#8 ToyotaBuemi, Davidson, Nakajima128+ 30 Laps
55LMP2#43 RileyKeating, Bleekemolen, Taylor121+ 37 Laps
56LMP2#49 LigierKonopka, Calko, Breukers111+ 47 Laps
57GTE Pro#82 FerrariVilander, Fisichella, Kaffer72Retired
58LMP2#26 OrecaRusinov, Thiriet, Lynn20Retired
59GTE Am#88 PorscheBachler, Lemeret, Al Qubaisi18Retired
60LMP1#4 EnsoWebb, Kraihamer, Bonanomi7Retired
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