February 6, 2002

Audi Returns to Speed World Challenge for 2002

Auburn Hills, Mich. - Audi of America announced today that they would return to the SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge GT Championship to defend their drivers and manufacturers titles.

Michael Galati of North Olmsted, Ohio, will carry the number one plate on his Champion Audi/Audi S4 Competition. Galati won four races last year in Texas, Lime Rock, Portland and Atlanta. Having won the series championship in 2001, he is poised to start the 2002 season where he left off. "It is going to be an exciting season. The Champion guys have been working hard on the cars and we are going to be doing some testing this month. We took a big step last season before Atlanta, so the improvements will help keep us at the front. I am looking forward to carrying the number one plate and defending the title," said Galati. "I think it will be close at the front again this year, with five or six guys battling for the lead-Derek being one of them."

Also returning to the team will be racing legend Derek Bell in the Speedchannel Legends of Motorsport/Audi S4 Competition. In addition to his competitive driving duties, Bell will be providing in-car commentary from behind the wheel during the races. "I am really looking forward to getting back to racing. It is a bonus on my career to run with Audi again this year; they run a top program with Champion," said Bell. "Driving the S4 Competition isn't the easiest, but we have taken two years to get acquainted, and judging by my finishes in Atlanta at the end of last year, I am excited for the season to begin. I will still be doing the in-car commentary during the races, which is good fun."

The Audi S4 Competition racers will be prepared again this year by Champion Motors of Pompano Beach, Fla. Champion is in their third season with the Audi program and has made steady technical progress with the cars every year.

"The team has spent the off season improving the S4 for what we hope to be another competitive season. Michael and Derek are up to the challenge and carry a lot of momentum into the new season, with great finishes at the season-ending Road Atlanta event," said Rod Bymaster, manager, Audi Sport North America."

2002 SCCA Pro Racing SPEED World Challenge Schedule:

March 13 - 16 Sebring
April 5 - 7 Miami
May 17 - 19 Mosport
May 24, 25, 27 Lime Rock
June 28 - 30 Mid Ohio
July 19 - 21 Washington, D. C.
August 16 - 18 Mosport
September 13 - 15 TBD
September 20 - 22 Laguna Seca
October 10 - 12 Road Atlanta
October 25 - 27 Virginia

Audi Sport North America is the motorsports arm of Audi of America, Inc.