Audi’s new R8 LMS scored a 1-2 in only its third-ever race in round two of the VLN series at the Nurburgring Nordschleife.
Christopher Mies and Nico Muller triumphed ahead of their teammates Pierre Kaffer and Laurens Vanthoor in Audi's latest GT3 challenger.
In changeable weather conditions, endurance racing specialist Mies and Audi DTM driver Muller took the lead ten laps into the race.
The lead exchanged hands several times as they staged a thrilling battle with the best Mercedes-Benz.
From lap 18 onwards, the German-Swiss duo gradually increased its lead before crossing the finish line with a 1m27s advantage over Vanthoor and Kaffer.
It was the first victory on the Nurburgring’s Nordschleife for the Audi Sport Team WRT from Belgium.
“I’m absolutely delighted, because it was a nail-biting race,” said Mies. “We started on rain tires, changed to slicks and before changing back to wet tires later on.
“The new Audi R8 LMS was easy to drive in both wet and dry conditions. We have also made progress on the suspension set-up. This was the key to victory today.”
Now the next challenge is the Nurburgring 24 Hours next month.
“This victory in the dress rehearsal for the 24 Hours was an important step forwards for us,” said Romolo Liebchen, Head of Audi Sport customer racing.
“We had very little experience with the R8 LMS beforehand in these changeable conditions. We saw that our new car is competitive.
“However, this was a test race. We discovered several things on which we must work to be perfectly prepared for the 24-hour race, because we can expect strong competition.”