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May 26, 2014 - 07:19 AM
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Audi Motorsport-Newsletter 17/2014
Posted by: newsla on May 26, 2014 - 07:14 AM
Sports Cars
Audi Motorsport-Newsletter 17/2014

Visitors to the family day at the Audi facility in Neckarsulm enjoyed an action packed motorsport day on Saturday at the heart of the factory premises. Audi customer teams clinched podium finishes with the Audi R8 LMS ultra in Germany, Australia and Japan.


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Audi Sport thrills visitors on Family Day

The visitors attending the Family Day at Audi’s Neckarsulm location experienced motorsport action right in the middle of the plant’s premises on Saturday. Audi Sport brought an RS 5 DTM, an R18 e-tron quattro and a cut-away model of the LMP1 race car to Neckarsulm. The Audi R8 LMS ultra GT3 sports car completed the exhibition. Race pit stops and demo drives by Timo Scheider delivered the thrill of DTM racing to the plant. The two-time DTM Champion, like his fellow Audi drivers Miguel Molina, Marcel Fässler and André Lotterer, fulfilled all wishes for autographs and in interviews talked about the current racing season.

Tom Kristensen in Madrid

Audi driver Tom Kristensen was a guest at Audi Spain on Wednesday. At the Audi Center Madrid Las Rozas, the nine-time Le Mans winner met with 45 members of the media from the fields of product, lifestyle and motorsport. The Dane shared all the details about his biography, the current Audi R18 e-tron quattro, the Le Mans 24 Hours and the new regulations in the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) with his receptive audience.

Marcel Fässler is pleased to receive new Audi RS 6 Avant

Audi factory driver Marcel Fässler received his new ‘company car’ on Tuesday. Stephan Villiger, Brand Manager Audi at AMAG in Zug, Switzerland, handed over the 560-hp model to the two-time Le Mans winner and 2012 WEC Champion. “A perfect car that combines the space of a station wagon with the driving pleasure of a sports car,” a pleased Marcel Fässler said in describing his RS 6 Avant painted in Daytona Gray Matte (Average consumption: 9.8 liters of fuel per 100 km. CO2 emission combined: 229 g/km).

Tom Kristensen pedals to mountain bike success

Audi WEC driver Tom Kristensen took a podium position in Denmark in a 24-hour race on a mountain bike. In the Rold24Race in the Rebild Bakker National Park in north Jutland, Kristensen and his team Max El took third place among the 238 participating teams. In the process, the Le Mans record winner’s team set an average speed of 19.5 km/h, only 1.6 km/h slower than the winning team. “Perfect preparation for the 24 Hours of Le Mans,” commented Kristensen. “Body, concentration and team spirit were put to the test.”

Third place at Silverstone

At the second round of the Blancpain Endurance Series (BES) season at Silverstone in Great Britain, César Ramos, Marc Basseng and Laurens Vanthoor claimed a podium position in the Audi R8 LMS ultra fielded by the Belgian Audi Club Team WRT. The trio, which started the three-hour race from the fifth row of the grid, was running fourth just before the flag. On the last lap, final stint driver Laurens Vanthoor overtook the Audi R8 LMS ultra from Saintéloc Racing and, in doing so, demoted Stéphane Ortelli, Edward Sandström and Grégory Guilvert to fourth place.

Podium place for Rast – Ogier in top ten on guest start

René Rast and Kelvin van der Linde took second place in the second ADAC GT Masters race at the Lausitzring. In the first race, the German-South American duo in the Audi R8 LMS ultra fielded by Prosperia C. Abt Racing dropped way down the order after a spin before fighting back to take seventh at the flag. After the third of eight race weekends, Rast and van der Linde are second in the championship only six points behind the current leaders. The guest start by rally World Champion Sébastien Ogier in an Audi R8 LMS ultra was eagerly awaited. Ogier and team mate Markus Winkelhock finished 13th in the first race after a small collision for which they were not to blame. In the second race they finished ninth and in the top ten.

Podium in the Super Taikyu Series

The Audi R8 LMS ultra celebrated yet another podium finish in the Super Taikyu Series in Japan. In the second race of the season at Sugo, Tetsuo Ogino, Takashi Kobayashi and Shinichi Takagi took third place in the Direction Racing teams R8 LMS ultra.

Salmon and Antunes in second place at Phillip Island

Rod Salmon and Nathan Antunes took second place in the GT Trophy class at the wheel of their Audi R8 LMS at the second round of the Australian GT Championship at Phillip Island.

A word from … Nico Müller

What is your interim assessment after the first two DTM races?
It’s positive. I wanted to learn, learn and learn in the first races. And that’s what I did. At the Hockenheim season opener, I still made a minor mistake here and there, but at Oschersleben that was no longer the case although I didn’t know the track at all and the conditions were clearly more difficult due to the changeable weather. I feel more comfortable in my Audi and am confident that this will also be reflected by the results in the next few races.

As a driver who has switched from a formula car, how does it feel to race in the pack of seasoned DTM drivers?
It’s really great fun. Especially since in the touring car, in contrast to single-seaters, you can fight real door-to-door duels without having to be afraid of a wheel being knocked off right away. On track, you don’t get the slightest break, the field battles for every centimeter and every hundredth of a second. To stand your ground in the DTM, you’ve got to extend your elbows really wide. This is another thing I manage to do pretty well at this point, although I can still learn a few tricks by watching seasoned DTM campaigners like my team-mate Jamie Green.

The next DTM door-to-door duels will take place at Budapest, a track you know really well.
I’ve won a few formula races there but I don’t think that this gives me a crucial experience advantage over the other DTM drivers, as the two vehicle classes differ too much from each other for that to be the case. But in contrast to Hockenheim and Oschersleben, the other drivers only know the track from the ITR tests in April too. So, as far as that goes, I’m battling on an equal footing with the competition for the first time. From that perspective, Budapest is an interesting yardstick for me.

In the track tests at Budapest, you marked the second-fastest lap of all drivers. The track seems to suit you well?
That’s right, I like the track. With its many corners, it’s very challenging in terms of driving skills. But setting a good time in a test shouldn’t be overestimated. Good positions in qualifying and the race are the things that count. That’s what I’m focused on now. But Budapest is also cool because of the atmosphere there. The Hungarians love motorsport and I’m proceeding from the assumption that the grandstands will be well filled. And looking at the first two races, I’m sure that we’ll again be delivering a great show to the fans there.

Coming up next week

27/05 Marcel Fässler turns 38 years of age
31/05 Detroit (USA), Tudor United SportsCar Championship round 4
31/05 Zandvoort (NL), DMV Touring Car Challenge round 2
01/06 Le Mans (F), test day WEC
01/06 Hungaroring (H), DTM round 3
01/06 Lédenon (F), French GT Championship round 2
01/06 Monza (I), Italian GT Championship round 2
01/06 Detroit (USA), Pirelli World Challenge round 4
01/06 Silverstone (GB), British GT Championship round 3
01/06 Autopolis (J), GT Asia round 3

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