Ferrari overcomes late drama to hang on for second consecutive 24 Hours of Le Mans victory

LE MANS, France (AP) — Ferrari made it two in a row as it outlasted Toyota to win a weather-affected 24 Hours of Le Mans on Sunday with the trio of Nicklas Nielsen, Antonio Fuoco and Miguel Molina crossing the line in the No. 50 car 14 seconds ahead of the No. 7 of Nyck de Vries, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez.

The No. 51 Ferrari helmed by Alessandro Pier Guidi, James Calado and Antonio Giovinazzi rounded out the top three in the latest running of the most iconic sports car race in the world.

Former French soccer star Zinedine Zidane waved the flag to start the race on Saturday afternoon and it quickly became evident this year's edition of the race would be tightly contested as Ferrari, Toyota, Porsche and Cadillac jostled for rank under the graying skies.

Rain and fog brought out the safety car for nearly four hours in the early morning with Ferrari jostling with Toyota and Porsche for top spot. But with dawn breaking, the racing resumed under a green flag with five teams still in contention and separated by less than a minute.

With less than six hours remaining the No. 50 Ferrari made its move just before more rain fell with Fuoco moving up the grid. Nielsen then survived more late drama when a flapping door forced the car into an unscheduled pit stop but managed to hang on for victory in the treacherous wet conditions.

“Fantastic! It really is a dream come true,” said Nielsen. “The victory seemed very difficult for part of the race, even at the end, when we had a problem with the door. But then everything went well.

“The last lap was very long, impossible to imagine. I worried about avoiding any risks and getting to the finish line as quickly as possible. I just had to manage the lead.”

It was Ferrari's 11th win at Le Mans in the 101st running of the endurance event.


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The Associated Press