CAPELLO'S SWEETEST LE MANS In hindsight, Audi's dismal showing at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring wasn't so bad after all. After all, Dindo Capello says the third-place overall finish that made Audi a believer in ...
CAPELLO'S SWEETEST LE MANS
In hindsight, Audi's dismal showing at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring wasn't so bad after all. After all, Dindo Capello says the third-place overall finish that made Audi a believer in Murphy's Law set the table for an incredible performance at the 24 Hours of Le Mans that saw Audi take its eighth victory there since 2000.
"In Sebring we had problems that were new for us," said Capello, who is at Lime Rock this weekend for his first American Le Mans Series race since Sebring in March. "I will remember Sebring as being one of the worst races for Audi. We had technical problems on both cars. We made some mistakes in strategy. I got a stop-and-go penalty. Many things made that race really bad on one side. But I would say it was really good on another side. It was a good way to wake us up a little bit because we were used to running problem-free. But Sebring showed that problems can happen, drivers can make mistakes and there can be mistakes from the pits."
There were no mistakes at Le Mans for Capello, Allan McNish and Tom Kristensen. The Audi team had no margin for error with the superior speed of Peugeot, which like Audi entered three diesel-powered factory cars.
"This year was something really special. This victory was unexpected," Capello said. "We worked hard to make it happen. Performance-wise, there was no chance for us to compete with Peugeot. They were so much faster than us. That's why it tastes much, much sweeter than any other Le Mans victory.
"We will see what we can do on this track," he added of the transition to the 1.51-mile, 10-turn Lime Rock circuit. "It doesn't fit so well our car. After Le Mans coming here is unbelievable. You can feel how big the difference is in motorsport. But it is great that a car that can run and be fast on a track where the average speed is more than 250 kph and a few weeks later can run on a very small race track where the fastest corner is probably similar to the slowest at Le Mans."