Audi takes one-two in dramatic Le Mans
15 June 2014 – Audi claimed a one-two finish at the end of a dramatic 24 Hours of Le Mans on Sunday afternoon.
The #2 car of Benoît Tréluyer, Marcel Fässler and André Lotterer racked up 379 laps throughout the prestigious race, leading home the #1 machine of Tom Kristensen, Lucas di Grassi and Marc Gené by three tours.
Despite an early accident, Toyota trio Anthony Davidson, Nicolas Lapierre and Sébastien Buemi took third.
Audi's result had come under threat early on Sunday, with turbo problems hitting the German manufacturer's front running cars and handing the lead to the Porsche of Mark Webber, Brendon Hartley and Timo Bernhard.
But Lotterer, rising back through the field, made light work of the #20 car, which later hit trouble of its own and retired, denying Webber and Porsche what would have been a podium on their return to Le Mans.
Kristensen, who had been in contention for a 10th Le Mans victory before being forced to pit with turbo trouble, thus returned the #1 Audi to second position, two laps ahead of the #8 Toyota, which remarkably recovered to the final podium spot after Lapierre caused major car damage when he crashed during an early spell of rain.
The #3 Audi, being driven by Marco Bonanomi at the time, was claimed by the storm in a separate incident.
Although Audi ultimately grabbed the top two positions at the chequered flag, the pole-sitting #7 Toyota of Alexander Wurz, Stéphane Sarrazin and Kazuki Nakajima had been in control in the early stages of the race.
Having taken over the wheel of the TS040 Hybrid from Sarrazin, ex-Formula 1 driver Nakajima was extending their advantage early in his stint, but a terminal electrical issue struck and cruelly ended the trio's efforts.
Jota Sport's Simon Dolan, Harry Tincknell and Oliver Turvey took honours in the LMP2 category, impressively returning to the top spot after tumbling down the order when the aforementioned rainfall shook the race.
The AF Corse Ferrari of Giancarlo Fisichella, Gianmaria Bruni and Toni Vilander came out on top in GTE Pro after problems for its main rivals, while the #95 Aston Martin Vantage of Kristian Poulsen, David Heinemeier-Hansson and Nicki Thiim secured the GTE Am win after the sister #98 machine hit power-steering trouble.