Detroit: Audi race report

Audi claim second and third places overall 20th consecutive LM P1 victory for Audi Exciting debut on the street circuit in Detroit Audi wins Manufacturers title for the eighth time in a row In the tenth race of the American Le Mans Series on...

Audi claim second and third places overall

20th consecutive LM P1 victory for Audi Exciting debut on the street circuit in Detroit Audi wins Manufacturers title for the eighth time in a row In the tenth race of the American Le Mans Series on the new street circuit in Detroit (US state of Michigan), Audi demonstrated their impressive performance of modern diesel engine technology. The Audi R10 TDI of Emanuele Pirro (Italy) and Marco Werner (Germany) was in the lead until four laps before the end of the 2:45 hours of the race. In an exciting battle it was beaten by a lighter Porsche of the LM P2 category by only 5.9 seconds.

Dindo Capello (Italy) and Allan McNish (Scotland) in the "sister" Audi completed an excellent team performance with third place overall and second in LM P1. With that Audi celebrated the 20th consecutive victory in the LM P1 category, the "king class" of the Le Mans prototypes and secured two races before the end of the season the Manufacturers title for the eighth time.

The two Audi R10 TDI sportscars, which started the race from the fourth row, gave the fans an impressive show. In the first hour of the race Marco Werner had to come to the pits for a stop-and-go-penalty but still climbed back to the third position. Emanuele Pirro, who took over the cockpit during a full-course-yellow, demonstrated at the restart the power of his Audi R10 TDI and went directly to the head of the field. For the final 35 laps, he had a hard battle with Romain Dumas (Porsche) and defended his lead until lap 102 of 106. When Dumas went in the lead, both cars touched slightly. Pirro re-took the lead but after short time but at the end he was ultimately beaten by less than six seconds.

Quotes after the race

Dr Wolfgang Ullrich (Head of Audi Motorsport): "We saw another dramatic ALMS race. After Mosport we thought that it could not be closer. To lose the overall victory three minutes before the end after a long lead hurts of course. But on the other side we did not expect to fight against the lighter LM P2 cars for the victory on this street circuit, especially after the qualifying. The race performance and the strategy of the team were very good. Our drivers demonstrated once more the meaning of Audi TDI power."

Emanuele Pirro (Audi R10 TDI #2): "It was a great race. Dumas was quicker in the end. I tried everything what I have learned in 30 years of motor racing, but I didn't want to play dirty. I had a lot of pick up and I unfortunately could not do more in the last laps. Audi and TDI technology did a wonderful job today, this is a fantastic result and I am satisfied."

Marco Werner (Audi R10 TDI #2): "A big thank to Audi and the team of Champion Racing. Our pit crew did a superb job for us. The Audi R10 TDI was very good, my stint was okay. Unfortunately we lost the race in the last five minutes - we almost had the victory in our pockets."

Dindo Capello (Audi R10 TDI #1): "Having taken over from Allan after the restart I was baulked. The leading Porsche of [Romain] Dumas was slow at the green flag which slowed [Chris] Dyson and me enabling Emanuele [Pirro] to take a clean run from fourth behind me and into the lead. For almost the next 30mins, Dyson was defending third place very hard and that cost the #1 Audi any hope of overall honours. It was then a case of ensuring another good LM P1 points score for the championship."

Allan McNish (Audi R10 TDI #1): "Second and third places overall for Audi on possibly the least suited circuit for our R10 TDI is a positive result. We were much more competitive in the race than had been expected partly due to us being good in traffic. I had grabbed the lead 10mins before I pitted to Dindo during a full course yellow but we encountered a nut problem on the front left wheel which cost us valuable seconds and dropped us into the pack."

Dave Maraj (Team Director Audi Sport North America): "For the third consecutive race it looked as if Audi could get back on to the top step of the winner's podium which, considering the nature of this track, was a creditable achievement. But once again we found ourselves being pipped in the closing minutes and it was a case of second place overall once again for us. It was a tremendously close and exciting race at a superb facility and another LM P1 1-2 finish for Audi Sport North America which earns Audi the Manufacturers' title to go with the Team's award we got in the previous race."

-credit: audi-motorsport

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About this article
Series ALMS
Drivers Allan McNish , Marco Werner , Romain Dumas , Dave Maraj , Dindo Capello , Emanuele Pirro