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After spending five years at the top, Audi was pipped to the post by a Porsche 919 Hybrid at the legendary endurance race in France.
Despite Audi enjoying a string of past successes at the race, winning thirteen of the last fifteen races, Porsche clinched the title and now holds the record for 17 wins at Le Mans. Having returned to the sport just last year, Porsche haven’t won the race since 1998.
German Formula One driver, Nico Hulkenberg was behind the wheel of the #19 Porsche when it crossed the line, with team mates, British driver Nick Tandy and New Zealand’s Earl Bamber also celebrating the win, which saw Hulkenberg become the first activie Formula 1 driver to win Le Mans in 24 years.
The #17 Porsche took second place driven by former Formula One driver Mark Webber, whilst the #7 Audi R18 e-tron quattro came third.
The big question on everyone’s minds prior to the race was whether Porsche could show the endurance in addition to the outright speed to beat the Audis? However, the Audis were held back during the race by reliability issues which ultimately led to a number of unscheduled pit stops, and ultimately cost them the first two winning places in the race.
The number 7 Audi team finished two laps behind the winner and a lap behind second-place, whilst Tandy took the lead for Porsche on lap 253 for the #19 Porsche team before Hulkenberg guided them to victory with 395 laps covered.
Tandy, who was the 30th winner of the event, said; “I could retire from racing tomorrow and look back on today and I am sure I would be happy for the rest of my life.”