Everything Audi and its drivers do are focused toward just one goal: winning at Le Mans. And that is something Audi has done seven times in eight years first with its R8 and the last two years with the diesel-powered Audi R10 TDI. The nine Audi drivers at Le Mans this year have combined for 23 overall victories, 27 class wins and 62 starts but they still remain well aware of Le Mans' significance and history.
"Actually this year is the 10th anniversary of my first start at Le Mans in 1998. There are many memories since then but for sure I will never forget my very first lap on the Le Mans circuit because at that time it was something completely different to what I did before in Touring Car racing."
"The first thing I felt about Le Mans was when I stood and saw the cars driving out pitlane at seven o'clock in the evening for the first qualifying back in 1997. The power and the emotion were so great. I never ever had that sort of emotion with a circuit at any other place of the world. That was when I started to understand what Le Mans is all about."
"Every time when you stand on the podium and watch the incredible crowd of fans you collect a moment for your memory which you will never forget. Happy, tired, the national anthem, the people cheering and waving their flags - this is pure emotion."
"Unfortunately I can't really judge this race as an observer because most of the time I am passing by at high speed in a race car. But once every year I take my time and visit the Danish camps along the circuit. And every time it makes me proud and a little anxious at one time because I think half of my country traveled to France. With their passion and enthusiasm these people make Le Mans what it is: A unique event all over the world."
The 76th running of the 24 Hours of Le Mans runs from 9 a.m. ET (3 p.m. local time) Saturday, June 14 to 9 a.m. ET Sunday, June 15 from the Circuit de la Sarthe in Le Mans, France. Forty-four drivers will represent the American Le Mans Series, whose teams have captured seven overall victories and 22 class championships since 1999. SPEED will televise the event live, and Radio Le Mans will have flag-to-flag coverage of the race as well as practice and qualifying on June 11 and 12.