Audi remains in front after Austin

Marcel Fässler, André Lotterer and Benoît Tréluyer maintain their position at the top of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) with Audi.

Audi remains in front after Austin
#7 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro: Marcel Fässler, Andre Lotterer, Benoit Tréluyer
Benoit Tréluyer, Andre Lotterer, Lucas di Grassi, Loic Duval, Audi Sport Team Joest
#8 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro: Lucas di Grassi, Loic Duval, Oliver Jarvis
Podium: race winners Timo Bernhard, Mark Webber, Brendon Hartley, Porsche Team, second place Marcel Fässler, Andre Lotterer, Benoit Tréluyer, Audi Sport Team Joest, third place Lucas di Grassi, Loic Duval, Oliver Jarvis, Audi Sport Team Joest
#7 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro: Marcel Fässler, Andre Lotterer, Benoit Tréluyer
#7 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro: Marcel Fässler, Andre Lotterer, Benoit Tréluyer
#8 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro: Lucas di Grassi, Loic Duval, Oliver Jarvis
#8 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro: Lucas di Grassi, Loic Duval, Oliver Jarvis
Podium: race winners Timo Bernhard, Mark Webber, Brendon Hartley, Porsche Team, second place Marcel Fässler, Andre Lotterer, Benoit Tréluyer, Audi Sport Team Joest, third place Lucas di Grassi, Loic Duval, Oliver Jarvis, Audi Sport Team Joest
#7 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro: Marcel Fässler, Andre Lotterer, Benoit Tréluyer
#7 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro: Marcel Fässler, Andre Lotterer, Benoit Tréluyer
#7 Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R18 e-tron quattro: Marcel Fässler, Andre Lotterer, Benoit Tréluyer

The driver trio of the number ‘7’ Audi R18 e-tron quattro took second place on the circuit at Austin, marking its fifth consecutive podium finish this year. The 2012 World Champions have been leading the drivers’ standings since the beginning of the season. For the first time this year, car number ‘8’ clinched a podium result as well.

Audi braved the heat in Texas: The brand with the four rings was the only manufacturer in the LMP1 class to bring its cars home without any setbacks. The 6-hour race started with air temperature of 34 degrees centigrade and 42 degrees on the tarmac, making maximum demands on the teams. The technology of the two hybrid sports cars with the four rings ran reliably and the vehicles merely required fresh tires and new fuel during the pit stops.

At Austin, we were the only manufacturer to finish the race with both cars without any technical issues,

Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich

Fässler/Lotterer/Tréluyer were not unsettled by the understeering of their race car either and after six tough hours of racing achieved second place. The result has increased their point score in the drivers’ standings to 113, which means they have retained a ten-point advantage over the Porsche drivers Timo Bernhard/Brendon Hartley/Mark Webber, the winners of Austin.

Lucas di Grassi/Loïc Duval/Oliver Jarvis (BR/F/GB) in the second Audi R18 e-tron quattro, designated as car number ‘8,’ in third place, had secured the better grid position within the Audi squad. In the race, the driver trio maintained position three up to lap 99 when a penalty caused them to drop back. The stewards imposed a one-minute stop-and-go penalty after a mechanic had dropped a wheel on the ground – an extremely rare mistake. Afterwards, car number ‘8’ recovered and the drivers celebrated their first podium result on seeing the checkered flag.

“Both of our driver squads showed flawless performances in what have been the hottest conditions so far this year,” said Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich. “In spite of spending more than an hour and a half in the cockpit per stint, each driver delivered a consistently strong race before turning the car over to his teammate. At Austin, we were the only manufacturer to finish the race with both cars without any technical issues, but in the end had to admit defeat to Porsche in the battle for victory.”

Chris Reinke, Head of LMP at Audi Sport, praised the performance by the entire squad. “We lost valuable practice time on Thursday due to technical issues. Consequently, in preparing for the race, we weren’t able to check off some of the items on our list such as the important endurance runs of the tires. But no-one was unsettled by this. We showed a concentrated performance and delivered a solid race in challenging conditions.”

The next challenge in the World Championship is coming up in three weeks from now. On October 11, Audi, as the leader of the standings, will be contesting round six in Japan. The third from last 6-hour race of the 2015 season will be held on the circuit at Fuji – the World Endurance Championship is turning onto the finish straight.

Race results

1 Bernhard/Hartley/Webber (Porsche) 185 laps
2 Fässler/Lotterer/Tréluyer (Audi R18 e-tron quattro) +1m 06.840s
3 di Grassi/Duval/Jarvis (Audi R18 e-tron quattro) –1 lap
4 Buemi/Davidson/Nakajima (Toyota) –2 laps
5 Bird/Canal/Rusinov (Ligier) –15 laps
6 Bradley/Howson/Lapierre (Oreca) –15 laps
7 Derani/Gonzalez/Yacaman (Ligier) –16 laps
8 Kaffer/Trummer (CLM) –16 laps
9 Dalziel/Heinemeier Hansson/Sharp (Ligier) –16 laps
10 Hamilton/Ragues/Webb (Morgan) –16 laps

Audi

shares
comments
Webber promises WEC title run-in will be “very interesting”

Previous article

Webber promises WEC title run-in will be “very interesting”

Next article

Porsche: String of successes continues in Texas

Porsche: String of successes continues in Texas
Load comments
Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood Prime

Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood

Team WRT has been at the forefront of GT racing for years and made a successful move to prototypes for 2021, capped by an LMP2 win on its Le Mans debut. It could've been even better had the race been one lap shorter, when its cars ran 1-2, but the stranger-than-fiction reality has spurred the team to reach greater heights.

Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked Prime

Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked

Toyota scored its fourth Le Mans 24 Hours victory and a 1-2, with the #7 car of Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez beating the #8. But although it looked straightforward from the outside, Toyota faced serious problem that had to be solved with some quick-thinking and ingenuity.

Le Mans
Aug 24, 2021
What we've learned from the Le Mans 24 Hours so far Prime

What we've learned from the Le Mans 24 Hours so far

The new dawn for the FIA World Endurance Championship has arrived at Le Mans, as Hypercars prepare to duel for victory in the world's oldest endurance race. Motorsport.com picks out the 10 things we have learned in the build up to the race.

Le Mans
Aug 21, 2021
Le Mans 2021: The team-by-team guide Prime

Le Mans 2021: The team-by-team guide

After a two-month delay due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 Le Mans 24 Hours is set to get underway with the start of the Hypercar era at the Circuit de la Sarthe.

Le Mans
Aug 21, 2021
Can Toyota's #7 crew break its Le Mans curse? Prime

Can Toyota's #7 crew break its Le Mans curse?

One Toyota, normally with the number 7 on the side, always seems to attract the bad luck in the Le Mans 24 Hours. Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez are hoping for a change in fortune this time around, but face significantly more unknowns than in recent years

Le Mans
Aug 19, 2021
Why Glickenhaus should be taken seriously on its Le Mans bow Prime

Why Glickenhaus should be taken seriously on its Le Mans bow

Many were quick to dismiss Glickenhaus when the boutique American sportscar firm's entry into the top class of the Le Mans 24 Hours was announced. It's all-new LMH racer, powered by an engine built by a rally specialist, goes in as the underdog against Toyota but the mathematical odds suggest that it has more than just a faint hope of success.

Le Mans
Aug 18, 2021
How 1971's benchmark Le Mans team lost with the best car Prime

How 1971's benchmark Le Mans team lost with the best car

The JW Automotive Engineering team won twice at the Le Mans 24 Hours with ageing Fords and was considered the heavy favourite to add more victories to its tally after partnering with Porsche. But despite being armed with the all-conquering 917, this formidable combination was never as successful in real life as on the big screen.

Le Mans
Aug 15, 2021
Why Jose Maria Lopez isn’t motivated by emulating Fangio Prime

Why Jose Maria Lopez isn’t motivated by emulating Fangio

Having twice missed out on Formula 1 and reinvented himself as a touring car driver, Jose Maria Lopez has had a rocky ride to becoming a four-time world champion. One more would put him level with his nation's favourite son, but there's another prize he would value far more than the honour of matching Juan Manuel Fangio's tally.

WEC
Aug 14, 2021