AUDI PLACES WORLD-CLASS DRIVER LINEUP IN DIESEL-POWERED R10 FOR SEBRING, LE MANS Braselton, Ga. - For its history-making quest in the American Le Mans Series and at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Audi AG has chosen a collection of factory drivers that...
AUDI PLACES WORLD-CLASS DRIVER LINEUP IN DIESEL-POWERED R10 FOR SEBRING, LE MANS
Braselton, Ga. - For its history-making quest in the American Le Mans Series and at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, Audi AG has chosen a collection of factory drivers that rank among the best in the world. Frank Biela, Dindo Capello, Tom Kristensen, Allan McNish, Emanuele Pirro and Marco Werner will drive two Audi R10s when the diesel-powered prototype makes its race debut at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring.
The race kicks off the 2006 American Le Mans Series. The same group of drivers also will drive the car at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in June.
Each of the six Audi drivers has won the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the 12-hour race at Sebring at least once in the Audi R8. As a group, they have recorded 17 Le Mans and 12 Sebring wins. Heading the list is the Kristensen, the Great Dane who already has won seven times at Le Mans and three times at Sebring.
Five of the six drivers have won LMP1 championships in the American Le Mans Series; Werner, Pirro and Biela each are two-time Series champions. Together the group has 66 combined Series victories.
With the exception Kristensen, all the Audi drivers have already tested the new Audi R10 extensively. Kristensen was at the wheel of the R10 during the presentation in Paris in December and will get ample opportunity during the test and practice days before the Sebring race to familiarize himself with the new diesel sports car.
The two Audi R10 prototypes will be entered in Sebring and Le Mans by Reinhold Joest's team, which previously supported the Audi Sport Development Team during the successful R8 project years. Both Audi R10 prototypes will race under the Audi Sport North America banner in Sebring.
The R10 is powered by a newly developed V12 TDI engine producing almost 650 hp and 1,100 newton-meters of torque. "The R10 project is the greatest challenge ever to face Audi Sport," explains Head of Audi Motorsport Dr Wolfgang Ullrich. "It goes without saying that we needed drivers with experience in depth for this project, who also play an important roll during the development. I'm delighted that we have managed to form such a strong driving squad for Le Mans and for the test race at Sebring."
The American Le Mans Series begins its 2006 season with the 54th annual Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. The 12-hour endurance classic is scheduled for 10:30 a.m. EST on March 18 at Sebring International Raceway. It will be televised live on SPEED Channel in North America and MotorsTV in Europe. In addition, Greenlight-Television will distribute the race worldwide to more than 510 million households. American Le Mans Series Radio will have flag-to-flag coverage available at www.americanlemans.com, along with IMSA Live Timing & Scoring.