Posted: Saturday June 16, 2012 1:45 PM

Audi leads 24 Hours of Le Mans after 63 laps

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LE MANS, France (AP) - Audi was in front in the 24 Hours of Le Mans on Saturday but under pressure from two Toyota cars after 63 laps.

Defending champion Benoit Treluyer took over from pole-sitter Andre Lotterer in his Audi No. 1 to lead by 21.253 seconds from Toyota No. 8 driven by Sebastien Buemi. Nicolas Lapierre's Toyota No. 7 was third, followed by Romain Dumas' Audi No. 3 and Tom Kristensen's Audi No. 2.

Audi made the best of the rolling start to take the top three spots when Allan McNish's Audi No. 2 overtook Stephane Sarrazin's Toyota No. 8 in the opening lap to move into third place.

But Audi No. 3, in second place, was slowed by a puncture and Audi No. 2 developed a rear suspension problem. Both went to the pits, allowing the Toyota cars to gain ground.

Audi has won seven of the last eight races at Le Mans. Peugeot broke the dominance of the German manufacturer in 2009. Toyota is returning to the world's most famous endurance race after a 13-year absence.

Fifty-six cars started the 80th edition of the race, which will end Sunday afternoon. The race is won by the team that completes the most laps in 24 hours, with up to three drivers alternating.

 
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