Published by Autobahn Buzz (Audi R18 e-tron quattro)
- Another historical success for Audi
- First triumph of a hybrid race car at Sebring
- One-two triumph of the Audi R18 e-tron Quattro on U.S. launch
- Fässler / Jarvis/Tréluyer gain endurance classic
Sebring, March 16, 2013– Another historical racing success for Audi: The Audi R18 e-tron Quattro’s success marked the first ever before of a hybrid race car at the Sebring (Florida) 12 Hours in the history of the U.S. endurance classic.
On the last running of the LMP1 sports vehicles that include advanced innovation at Sebring, Audi Sport Team Joest accomplished a commanding one-two triumph. From the start, the two Audi R18 e-tron Quattro vehicles set the pace, during the whole race an Audi was at the front of the field made up of 42 prototypes and GT sports automobiles. The third-placed Lola-Toyota was trailing the winner by five laps at the finish.
For twelve hours, the two Audi R18 e-tron Quattro cars battled a fierce duel for success and repetitively overtook each other in close battle. Overall, the lead in between the two R18 automobiles changed 20 times. A damaged under-floor of automobile number “1” that was eventually victorious caused some headaches for Audi Sport Team Joest. The required repairs were made without any major time loss during caution flags.
In the thrilling duel between the group’s two cars the existing Le Mans winners and World Endurance Champions Marcel Fässler (CH) and Benoît Tréluyer (F) plus Sebring beginner Oliver Jarvis (GB) prevailed by a narrow margin. All three commemorated their first Sebring victory. For Jarvis, after the GT success with the Audi R8 GRAND-AM at the Daytona 24 Hours, this marked the second triumph at a classic U.S. stamina race
With a space of just 7.679 seconds, Lucas di Grassi (BR), Tom Kristensen (DK) and Allan McNish (GB) completed the Audi one-two result. A 60-second time charge due to an accident with a slower sports prototype had been imposed against the 2013-specification Audi R18 e-tron Quattro just prior to the end of the third hour.
In 14 races at Sebring with Le Mans prototypes, this marked Audi’s llth overall triumph thanks to the pair of Audi R18 e-tron Quattro P1’s. With the first victory of a diesel sports automobile in 2006 and now the first victory of a hybrid race automobile Audi attained two historic success. Audi took the first podium and the first win at a sports car race at Sebring.
This time, Audi Sport Team Joest will once again remain at Sebring after the race for examinations with the Audi R18 e-tron Quattro that has been subjected to further advancement. It still remains to be seen whether or not there will be a future for Audi at the U.S. endurance classic. After the American Le Mans Series (ALMS) and the GRAND-AM Series merged to form the brand-new “United Sports Car Racing” series no LMP1 sports automobiles will be allowed to run anymore as of 2014.
UNITED STATES followers will have the ability to see the Audi R18 e-tron Quattro quickly once again in the United States however. On September 22, the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) will check out the Circuit of the Americas in Austin (Texas).
Quotes after the race:
Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich (Head of Audi Motorsport): “That was a perfect ending! After success with TFSI and TDI innovation, Audi on clinching the win today with a hybrid car has actually continued the excellence story at this race.”
Ralf Jüttner (Technical Director Audi Sport Team Joest): “This is an impressive outcome for exactly what has at least provisionally been our last run below at Sebring. In the start, both vehicles were running on different techniques. This success is a nice incentive for the entire squad some of whom worked with the entire evening prior to the race and then provided perfect pit stops for twelve hours straight.”
Marcel Fässler (Audi R18 e-tron Quattro #1): “Celebrating Audi’s last race right here at Sebring with a triumph is simply wonderful. It was an exceptionally close race in which both automobiles would have deserved to win.
Oliver Jarvis (Audi R18 e-tron quattro # 1): “What a beginning into the 2013 season! This isn’t really a dream; it’s a lot more than that. Winning with Audi at Daytona currently was an incredible experience. However now an overall success on my first run at Sebring on top of that is even more than I ‘d ever before risked to hope for. A huge thank you to Audi and to Marcel (Fassler) and Ben (Treluyer)– they’ve been the finest team-mates I could picture.”.
Benoît Tréluyer (Audi R18 e-tron quattro #1): “We gained the last race of the LMP1 sports vehicles at Sebring– we’re really proud of this. I think that the followers saw a thrilling race in which we had to give one hundred percent to beat our sister car.
Lucas di Grassi (Audi R18 e-tron Quattro # 2): “This was my first 12-hour race, my first race in the dark and my first run at Sebring– the podium position is a great conclusion of the weekend. It was a very close race with a few incidents and a controversial charge. More would have been possible for us but as far as I’m worried the happiness about the second place with Audi outweighs anything else.”.
Tom Kristensen (Audi R18 e-tron Quattro # 2): “It was a memorable, tough and rapid race. We had the chance ourselves to gain today– however we didn’t make it. ‘well done’ to the guys from the ‘sister vehicle’ and all various other winners here at Sebring. Aside from our second place I’m taking a whole lot of memories home with me from all the years and the fastest race lap on today’s farewell.”
Allan McNish (Audi R18 e-tron quattro # 2): “What a wonderful race! We arrived right here with Audi in order to say bye-bye to our followers at Sebring with a thrilling performance– and I believe we managed to do that. On a really individual note, I’m absolutely pleased with the race.