|October 2, 2011
Source: Audi of America
· Audi R8 LMS showcased at soccer match and DTM finale
· Four commitments in four weeks for Filipe Albuquerque
· Audi customer sport victory at ADAC GT Masters season finale
Ingolstadt, – A race car sporting the colors of a soccer club: Audi is offering two unusual appearances to soccer and motorsport fans with the “1899 Hoffenheim” Audi R8 LMS in October.
The best of two worlds: Audi visually unites soccer and motorsport in a unique appearance. The Audi R8 LMS customer racing sports car made its debut on Saturday sporting the white-blue “1899 Hoffenheim” colors. Before the TSG 1899 Hoffenheim vs. FC Bayern München match at the Rhein-Neckar-Arena in Sinsheim the GT3 race car attracted attention in the VIP area. There, two VIP tickets and two R8 LMS race taxi rides for the DTM finale at Hockenheim were raffled as well. Audi is expecting prominent guests of TSG 1899 Hoffenheim at the DTM’s final round of the year: Coach Holger Stanislawski, national player Andreas Beck and goal-keeper Tom Starke have announced their attendance.
Strong support: With his first DTM podium result in his baggage Filipe Albuquerque is traveling to two customer sport commitments. Next weekend, at Silverstone, he plans to help his team-mate and leader of the standings Greg Franchi win the Blancpain Endurance Series in the Audi R8 LMS of the WRT team. A week later he will be competing at the finale in Italy with his fellow Audi factory driver Marco Bonanomi for Audi Sport Italia, also in the Audi R8 LMS. Last year the two already formed a team for Emilio Radaelli’s squad and became “vice” champions. At Monza, leader of the standings Bonanomi will be fighting for the title on October 16.
Visit by dressage rider: Susanne Lebek visited the DTM race at Valencia as a guest of Audi Sport Team Phoenix. The former German and European dressage riding champion enjoys horsepower in motorsport as well.
U.S. trip: Leena Gade, who as the responsible vehicle engineer led Marcel Fässler, André Lotterer and Benoît Tréluyer to victory at the Le Mans 24 Hours in June, visited the “Petit Le Mans” race at Road Atlanta at the invitation of Audi of America. She provided Audi’s guests with a peek behind the scenes of Audi Sport Team Joest and the technology of the Audi R18 TDI.
Trophy from the champion: Edoardo Mortara, who won last year’s Formula 3 Euro Series, presented the trophies at the second Formula 3 race on Saturday at Valencia. Winner Marco Wittmann and runner-up Kimiya Sato, both running with Volkswagen Power which makes them colleagues within the Group, received the trophies from the hands of the Audi factory driver.
Reward for the best: Even prior to his DTM title win Martin Tomczyk and Audi Sport Team Phoenix received a reward. Hankook, the DTM’s exclusive tire partner, treated the squad to a round of beer on Friday for the most efficient pit stop at the eighth round at Oschersleben.
World Championship to start in Florida: The new FIA World Endurance Championship will start in the United States of America in 2012. The first round of the series, in which the Audi R18 TDI will compete as well, will be held at the Sebring 12 Hours on March 17.
Prizes for creatives: A photo contest sponsored by the ACO and its partners will continue until October 5. Professionals and amateurs have the chance to enter their best sports car photos – of the Le Mans winning Audi R18 TDI for instance. Winners can look forward to cash prizes up to 3,000 euros. All further details can be obtained at www.endurancephotos.sarthe.com.
Strong at Hockenheim: The ADAC GT Masters season ended successfully for René Rast and Stefan Landmann. The duo from Team Phoenix Racing Pole Promotion in the Audi R8 LMS finished the first race in third place, and clinched the third victory of the season for the Audi R8 LMS in the second race. The best Audi driver in the overall classification is Christopher Mies in third place of the standings, in front of his Abt team-mate Luca Ludwig.
Podium in Japan: Frank Yu from HongKong achieved a podium result at the fourth race weekend of the GT Asia Series in the Audi R8 LMS. At the Autopolis circuit in Japan he started into the race from grid position three but then dropped to sixth place initially. On seeing the checkered flag he had recovered to third place. Yu finished the second round in fourth place.
Second place in Belgium: Enzo Ide and François Verbist in the Audi R8 LMS of the WRT team finished the fifth round of the Belcar Championship as the runners-up. At the season’s finale at Spa-Francorchamps on October 23rd Xavier Maassen and Greg Franchi in the Audi R8 LMS as well as their team-mates Verbist/Ide still have chances for the “vice” champion’s title.
A brief interview with … Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich
Dr. Ullrich where did you watch the DTM race in Valencia?
“We followed the DTM race at Valencia via Internet at the Road Atlanta track where we had competed in the ‘Petit Le Mans’ on Saturday. It’s not so easy to receive German television in the USA; however, as is always the case with Audi Sport we also found the perfect technical solution in this respect. We met early on Saturday and Sunday morning to spectate together and to see how things were going at Valencia. It goes without saying that we were there in our hearts and souls.”
Is Martin Tomczyk a deserving DTM Champion?
“It’s absolutely out of the question for me. He really has earned this championship. He has worked very hard this year and is therefore a worthy champion. I’m absolutely delighted for him.”
Seven wins from nine races, the last one in dominant fashion – why was Audi so strong this year in particular?
“I think we better understood how to handle the new tires than our competitors did this year. Unfortunately it was the other way around last season. We managed to make sure that all our cars performed consistently throughout the whole year. In the last three races we had one driver form each of our three teams on the podium. This shows our very special strength: our team spirit.”
On one hand happy about Valencia, but certainly thoughts about what might have been at ‘Petit Le Mans’…
“The race at Road Atlanta was definitely a disappointment because we put in a strong performance and were fighting for victory. And in the very maneuver which would have seen Audi take the lead Romain Dumas was forced from the circuit by Franck Montagny in the Peugeot. I can’t say we were particularly happy about this because it was plain and simple unnecessary. Peugeot once again scored a win by force. With the ILMC finale at Zhuhai we have one race left which we aim to win through good performance and a good team showing.”
Coming up next week
Oct 10 Silverstone (GB), Blancpain Endurance Series, round 5
Oct 10 Bathurst (AUS), Australian GT Championship, round 6
Oct 10 Estoril (P), Portuguese GT Championship, round 5
Oct 10 Silverstone (GB), British GT Championship, round 10