Le Mans 24 Hours: Tom Kristensen claims ninth victory as Audi win tragedy-marred race
Last Updated: June 23, 2013 4:57pm
Audi: Recorded their 12th win in the Le Mans 24 hour race on Sunday
Audi recorded their 12th win in the Le Mans 24 hour race on Sunday but it was a victory overshadowed by the death of Danish driver Allan Simonsen.
Simonsen's compatriot Tom Kristensen, 45, was part of the winning trio of drivers, extending his all-time record to nine victories in the historic race but first since 2008.
Kristensen's team-mates were Scotsman Allan McNish, tasting victory for the third time, and Frenchman Loic Duval, who was winning for the first time.
"I'm very humbled to drive for the best team in the world. This is a dream come true, winning the toughest and fastest race in the world."
A brief tribute was paid to Simonsen before the podium ceremony on Sunday by six-time winner Jacky Ickx and Pierre Fillon, the president of the organising committee.
The Audi - which gave the manufacturer their fourth successive win and 11th in the last 13 editions - came home a lap clear of the Toyota, whose trio of drivers were Frenchman Stephane Sarrazin and former Formula One duo England's Anthony Davidson and Swiss Sebastien Buemi.
Audi's two-time defending champions Marcel Fässler, Andre Lotterer and Benoit Treluyer had led the race until they came to a halt in front of the stands late on Saturday night and lost 43 minutes while they changed their alternator.
"I'm very humbled to drive for the best team in the world," said Kristensen. "This is a dream come true, winning the toughest and fastest race in the world.
"But we lost somebody yesterday who had the same dream as well and was an absolutely humble and nice guy, so it's mixed feelings.
"If we talk personally about my Le Mans victories, I drive with my father's determination, with his ambition. He died in March, and he said I'd win Le Mans this year.
"So I hope there will be another race one day so maybe we can win another one and dedicate it to my dad - because this one is for Allan Simonsen."