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Taylor Leads, 4 Hours in the Books at Petit Le Mans

Taylor leads, yellows subside in fourth hour of Petit Le Mans…

Photo: IMSA

Photo: IMSA

Jordan Taylor continues up front in the Wayne Taylor Racing Corvette DP as the 17th Petit Le Mans powered by Mazda clicks over the four-hour mark.

Other class leaders included Gunnar Jeannette (PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports), Patrick Long (Porsche North America) and Bill Sweedler (AIM Autosport) in PC, GTLM and GTD, respectively.

Those four teams will get the first Tequila Patron North American Endurance Cup points awarded for this race.

The caution-filled third hour featured another one in the fourth, with the seventh of the race caused for the No. 38 Performance Tech Motorsports Oreca FLM09 PC car stopped off line exiting Turn 7.

There was one bit of contact that didn’t trigger a full-course yellow. The No. 9 Action Express Racing Corvette DP contacted the No. 33 Riley Motorsports Dodge Viper SRT GT3-R at Turn 10, which spun the Viper around. Both cars resumed and the Action Express car went behind the wall for repairs.

Riley’s Viper wasn’t alone with issues. An off and on by Ryan Hunter-Reay in the No. 91 SRT Motorsports Dodge Viper SRT GTS-R, in one of the GTLM title contending entries, triggered an unscheduled pit stop. That off/on occurred just before the latest PC yellow.

Ho-Pin Tung was able to bring himself back to the lead lap in the No. 42 OAK Racing Ligier JS P2 Honda, thanks in part to all the yellows in the third hour and subsequent wave-bys.

But he got ahead of then-overall leader Gabby Chaves in the DeltaWing following the most recent restart, and was able to streak away from there. Chaves lost the lead following his fourth pit stop on Lap 142 (leaders pitted on Lap 127), and handed over the car to Andy Meyrick.

There was a good scrap for the GTD lead between Ben Barker and Madison Snow in a pair of Porsche 911 GT Americas. Barker (GB Autosport) and Snow (Snow Racing/Dempsey Racing) seek to deliver either squad their first win of the year.

Barker pitted just before the four-hour mark, at three hours and 59 minutes, which handled the lead – and points – to Sweedler and AIM.

Tony DiZinno (@tonydizinno) is Sportscar365's North American Editor, focusing on coverage of the IMSA-sanctioned championships as well as Pirelli World Challenge. DiZinno also contributes to and other motorsports outlets. Contact Tony

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