Victory and title for Audi at Laguna Seca Frank Biela and Marco Werner drove their Infineon Team Joest Audi R8 to victory in round seven of the American Le Mans Series (ALMS), allowing Audi to prematurely clinch the ALMS Manufacturers' ...
Victory and title for Audi at Laguna Seca
Frank Biela and Marco Werner drove their Infineon Team Joest Audi R8 to victory in round seven of the American Le Mans Series (ALMS), allowing Audi to prematurely clinch the ALMS Manufacturers' Championship title. After 2000, 2001 and 2002 Audi have won this title with the R8 already for the fourth consecutive time. Biela/Werner were leading 115 of the 120 laps at Laguna Seca. Team ADT Champion Racing's Audi R8 was second in the opening stages of the race. A cautionary change of the car's rear section dropped Johnny Herbert and JJ Lehto to 24th position. They were able to fight their way back to fourth.
The race at a glance
- Weather: dry, warm
- Starting positions: 1 #1 Biela; 3 #38 Herbert
- Start: #1 Biela takes lead, #38 Herbert moves to second
- Lap 2: Safety Car
- Lap 4: Restart
- Lap 12: #38 Herbert drops to third behind #16 Weaver when a fuse comes lose in the cockpit
- Lap 39: #38 Herbert has rear section changed, eight minutes lost. #38 Lehto rejoins in 24th position, seven laps down (5th in LMP900 class)
- Lap 50: #1 Biela in the pits, tyres, fuel, driver change. #1 Werner rejoins in second position
- Lap 55: #1 Werner takes the lead when #16 Weaver stops for fuel
- Lap 76: #1 Werner refuels, stays in the lead
- Lap 87: #38 Lehto in the pits, front tyres, fuel
- Finish: Victory for #1 Biela/Werner, #38 Herbert/Lehto fight back to fourth overall, third in the LMP900 class
- Audi prematurely clinches ALMS Manufacturers' Championship
Quotes after the race
Frank Biela (Infineon Team Joest Audi R8 #1): "This has been a perfect weekend. Thanks to the advantage we now have, it looks quite good for us in the championship. We had a superb car here from the very beginning. The race went perfectly. It was a nice feeling to set the pace. I was able to pull away from the competitors, even before they ran into trouble. It was a shame, because it took the air out of the race. But of course it feels not too bad if the pressure from behind suddenly ceases."
Johnny Herbert (Team ADT Champion Racing Audi R8 #38): "I lost second place when a circuit breaker popped out - a problem connected to our electrical warm-up problem earlier in the day. I couldn't see the breaker box and had to reach down inside the cockpit and push it back in to place by feel but I'd dropped to third place by then. Shortly before the hour mark the gearbox started making a very odd noise. It wasn't affecting the performance but the team felt it wise to change the gearbox."