Hard-won seventh win for Audi at a tough, soaking-wet race
18 June 2007

At one of the toughest and wettest endurance races seen in recent years, Audi won the Le Mans 24hr yesterday afternoon, making it seven wins for the brand in eight years, and the second for its diesel-powered R10 TDI LMP1 car.The number 1 Audi Sport North America car, driven by Marco Werner, Frank Biela and Emanuele Pirro, finished the event 10 laps ahead of its nearest rival. Audi lead from almost the start of the race –snatching the lead from one of two Peugeot 908s. Like the Audis, the Peugeots were both diesel-powered, the first time there has been a serious oil-burning battle at Le Mans.Intermittent but torrential rain caused many problems for the racers, and provided plenty of excitement for spectators as the track went from dry to greasy to soaked in a matter of minutes.Despite taking an early lead, it wasn't all easy for Audi: the number 3 car crashed out at Tertre Rouge in the second hour of the race, and Rinaldo Capello had a big off at Indianapolis when a rear wheel came off, ending his race in the number 2 car.After qualifying on pole position, the number 8 Team Peugeot Total 908 LMP1 car, driven by Stephane Sarrazin, Pedro Lamy and Sebastien Bourdais, finished the gruelling event in a commendable second place. The French manufacturer lost its second car with only a couple of hours of racing remaining, to a mechanical failure. The number 16 Pescarolo Sport Pescarolo-Judd 01 LMP1 car, driven by Emmanuel Collard, Jean-Christophe Boullion and Romain Dumas finished third, a further two laps behind the winner. It was the highest-placed petrol-powered car.There was also considerable success for Aston Martin. Aston’s works racing team’s number 009 DBR9 car, driven by Darren Turner, David Brabham and Rickard Rydell, won the GT1 class. It was a crucial victory for Aston, which had spent several years struggling to overcome Corvette's dominance in GT1.Aston's DBR9s also claimed third, fourth, sixth and tenth in GT1, in an impressive showing.

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