Audi Sport, Charlotte report Thursday, March 30, 2000, 2:30 p.m. The morning practice for the Audi Sport R8's was delayed for over a two hours as the track crew reconfigured the tire chicane on the back straight. Practice finally began at 2:00...
Audi Sport, Charlotte report Thursday, March 30, 2000, 2:30 p.m.
The morning practice for the Audi Sport R8's was delayed for over a two hours as the track crew reconfigured the tire chicane on the back straight. Practice finally began at 2:00 p.m.
The team is optimistic about the performance of the '99 version of the R8 versus the competition, "we have a good idea of the '99 car, it is not too bad. We tested here some weeks ago. It will be difficult to repeat the result from Sebring. The gap in competition has disappeared, since we are running the '99 car. It is a sprint race, but the infield is short and there is a lot of traffic, that will be the key to the race," said Michele Alboreto. "You have to compromise the set-up of the car between the banking and the infield. The transition from the infield on to the banking is very rough, so the car will have to be strong."
The driver line-up for the Audi R8's is a little different from Sebring. The #77 R8 will be driven by Frank Biela and Emanuele Pirro, Tom Kristensen has a conflict and will return to the 77 car at Silverstone.
The #78 R8 will be driven by Michele Alboreto, Rinaldo Capello and Allan McNish.
"The key to a good result here is, it is easy to make a mistake, survival, race strategy and luck. I think there will also be a lot of yellows. We are focusing on the championship, we don't have to win the race, but get a lot of points and wait until our situation is more competitive," said Pirro.
Qualifying later this afternoon will see the R8's take on their foe from BMW once again. "I think it will take a 1:05.5 or a 1:05.4 for the pole. I ran new tires and was pushing hard and was able to do a 1:06.08. I am not sure if there is another half second in it or not. We didn't think we would be as close to the BMW as we are now," said Allan McNish, driver of the number 77 Audi R8.
The race will be covered on NBS and aired at 4:00 eastern standard time on Saturday, April 1st.