Push-to-pass function increases horsepower for easier overtaking
Zhuhai, April 6, 2014 - The Audi R8 LMS Cup will introduce a push-to-pass boost for overtaking and weight additions for podium drivers. The new features for the 2014 season were announced during the test weekend at Zhuhai International Circuit in South China on April 5-6.
Portuguese driver André Couto achieved excellent lap times during the two days of intensive testing. Raised in Macau, the former Macau Formula 3 champion is one of the most accomplished racers in Asia and joins the 2014 cup season for Brothers Racing Team (BRT). In addition, Swiss female racing star Rahel Frey will return to the Audi R8 LMS Cup for the 12 races of this year's campaign. She looks forward to meet her former colleagues from the German Touring Car Championship (DTM) during our DTM support race in Guangzhou.
"Rahel Frey and André Couto will increase the strong competition even further. I expect the new push-to-pass boost to increase overtaking opportunities. It also adds a new strategic component, as the number of boosts will be limited", commented Rene Koneberg, Director of Audi Sport customer racing Asia.
By activating a special "push-to-pass" button, drivers will be able to temporarily add about 50 horsepower to their engine output. The maximum number of boosts will be adjusted to the different circuit layouts. Another new feature is the weight additions. To increase competition at the head of the field drivers that reach the podium will have success ballast added for their next race.
Commenting on the upcoming campaign, André Couto said : "I am very happy to be part of this great championship. The Audi R8 LMS Cup has been growing quite a lot and has clearly raised the level of motorsport in Asia. We race at some of the best circuits in Asia, including many Formula 1 tracks. A new generation of young and talented drivers are joining the cup and I want to be part of that momentum. After we worked together for my home race, the Macau GT, last year, I am excited to now further extend the partnership with Brothers Racing Team. I feel strong and prepared for a successful season."
Up to 24 cars are expected to compete in the 2014 Audi R8 LMS Cup season. 16 drivers took the opportunity to test in Zhuhai, including some perspective new drivers. Debuting in the Audi GT3 race car were two of Asia's hottest racing talents: 19 year old Aidan Wright from Australia, who won the 2013 Formula Masters, and 18 year old Matt Solomon from Hong Kong, who shared a GT cockpit with former Formula 1 world champion Mika Hakkinen in 2013.
The Audi R8 LMS Cup is the first brand cup of Audi worldwide. The sprint race series expanded in Asia in 2013. This year the competition is scheduled to visit South Korea, Japan, Malaysia and China, including support races for the German Touring Car Championship (DTM) in Guangzhou and for the World Endurance Championship (WEC) in Shanghai. The strong field includes star drivers like 2013 cup champion Adderly Fong and Asian veteran and 2012 cup winner Marchy Lee, both from Hong Kong, as well as Malaysian former Formula 1 driver Alex Yoong and Chinese racer "Franky" Cheng Congfu.
Photo credit: Audi R8 LMS Cup