- Fifth overall victory of the season for the Audi R8 LMS in Australia
- Tresor Orange1 scores strong overall podium finish at the Nürburgring
- Class successes for the Audi R8 LMS GT4 in Germany and Japan
During final weekend of July, Audi Sport customers won races with the GT3 version of the Audi R8 LMS in three countries. Adding to these GT3 victories was a strong comeback drive for the Tresor Orange1 team to score an overall podium finish in the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS at the Nürburgring. The Audi R8 LMS GT4 also had a strong showing in German club racing and a class podium result in Japan.
Audi R8 LMS GT3
On top Down Under: Fraser Ross and Liam Talbot clinched victory for the Shannons Insurance team during the fourth race weekend of the Fanatec GT World Challenge Australia Powered by AWS held at Sydney Motorsport Park in Eastern Creek on Sunday – the fifth overall triumph for the Audi R8 LMS in eight races of the series so far this year. In the opening race on Saturday, the duo of Ross and Talbot, sharing an Audi R8 LMS run by the Melbourne Performance Centre, finished third overall, less than 10 seconds behind the race winners. One day later, Ross started the one-hour race from eighth on the grid and stayed out of trouble to move up to fifth place during the opening lap that saw multiple incidents on track. Ross maintained his position and handed the car over to Talbot at the halfway mark of the race. Talbot was running fourth by the time the pit stop window had closed with about 21 minutes to go, trailing the race leader by almost 13 seconds. With very strong pace, Talbot caught his opponents one by one, making the pass for the lead on the race-leading Mercedes heading into the very fast first corner with eight minutes remaining on the clock. Talbot then proceeded to build a gap of over 16 seconds by the time he crossed the line to take victory. It marked the third consecutive podium finish for the duo of Talbot and Ross. For Talbot himself, it was his fourth overall win of the season so far, having shared the honors with Audi Sport driver Max Hofer three times earlier this year. These strong results have moved Talbot into the lead of the Pro-Am drivers’ standings, two points ahead of Hofer, who is currently sharing an Audi R8 LMS with Geoff Emery, who lies fourth in the points.
Great comeback and podium finish: The trio of Audi Sport drivers, Mattia Drudi, Ricardo Feller and Dennis Marschall, finished third overall for the Tresor Orange1 team after three hours of hard racing in the Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe Powered by AWS at the Nürburgring. Drudi started the race from fifth overall as the best Audi R8 LMS on the grid of 54 cars, but lost positions on the outside of the first corner. Having dropped down to 13th by the end of the opening lap, Drudi pushed hard to make up places. After the first phase of pit stops and driver changes, Marschall was in the car and running strongly in fourth place overall during the middle stint, keeping the third-placed Porsche from Rutronik Racing within striking distance. Feller took over the car for the final hour of the race and successfully closed in on, and passed, the Porsche, netting him third place overall by the time the final pit stops were finished – the position that the Swiss maintained to the finish of the race. With fourth place overall in the Endurance Cup drivers’ standings, the trio of Drudi, Feller and Marschall are currently the best placed Audi R8 LMS drivers, while Tresor Orange1 is ranked in third place of the teams’ standings.
Overall sprint victory: The fourth event of the GTC Race season hosted at Oschersleben saw Finn Zulauf winning the second sprint heat overall on Sunday with an Audi R8 LMS from Car Collection Motorsport – the fifth overall sprint victory for the GT3 model from Audi Sport customer racing in the series this year. In the opening sprint race on Sunday, Zulauf’s teammate, Julian Hanses, scored third place in class. Earlier in the weekend, the duo shared the driving duties in the Audi R8 LMS and finished runner-up overall in the one-hour GT60 powered by Pirelli race on Saturday. In the standings, Hanses currently leads the GT3 drivers’ standings of GTC Race, as well as the overall GT60 drivers’ standings, while Zulauf holds third place in both rankings. Car Collection Motorsport leads the GT3 teams’ standings of GTC Race.
Four strong podium finishes in British club racing: Cook Racing celebrated first place overall with driver Hugo Cook in an Audi R8 LMS in the opening 25-minute sprint heat of the GT Cup Championship at Silverstone. Teammate, Sacha Kakad, finished third overall and first in class in the second sprint. In the two longer 50-minute races, the duo shared the team’s Audi R8 LMS and scored second and first place overall, respectively. Cook and Kakad continue to lead the GT3 drivers’ standings.
Two sprint race triumphs in German club racing: Marco Reinbold celebrated first place in both of Saturday’s P9 Challenge sprint races hosted at Hockenheim, the third event of the season. Driving the Audi R8 LMS from Team Bliss Autosport by XR Racing, Reinbold won both heats convincingly, making it a total of four class podium finishes for the German in the six sprint races so far this season. In the endurance race on Friday, Reinbold shared the R8 LMS with Paul Hochberger and the duo finished third overall, equaling their best endurance result of the year.
Audi R8 LMS GT4
Class podium result in the Land of the Rising Sun: In the Japanese Super Taikyu Series, the Techno First team celebrated third place in its class after five hours of racing at the Autopolis circuit. At the fourth round of the season, the team’s Audi R8 LMS GT4 was driven by Masaki Kanou, Riki Okusa and Hironobu Yasuda. The result was the second class podium finish for the GT4 model from Audi Sport customer racing in the Super Taikyu series so far this year – the first for the Techno First team.
Clean sweep in the sprint races: Ivan Peklin won his class in the opening sprint race of the GTC Race weekend at Oschersleben with an Audi R8 LMS GT4 entered by Seyffarth Motorsport. Peklin’s teammate, Tom Spitzenberger, took over the driving duties for the second race and clinched another class win, leading home a 1-2 class victory for Seyffarth Motorsport with Bernd Schaible finishing runner-up in the team’s sister Audi R8 LMS GT4 entry.
On top in class: The opening sprint race of the Norddeutscher ADAC Börde Tourenwagen Cup (NATC) at Oschersleben resulted in a 1-2-3 class victory for Audi Sport customers in Audi R8 LMS GT4 cars. Seyffarth Motorsport won with driver Jürgen Oehler, ahead of Jürgen Hemker from Team Konrad Motorsport and Oehler’s Seyffarth Motorsport teammate Bernd Schaible in third. In the second sprint heat, Rüdiger Seyffarth’s team again celebrated first place in class, this time with Tobias Erdmann taking the honors, while third place went to teammate Sally Erdmann. Rounding off a successful weekend, Seyffarth Motorsport clinched first and second in class in the one-hour NATC endurance race on Sunday. Tobias Erdmann and Bernd Schaible won their class, ahead of Sally Erdmann and Max Zschuppe.
On the class podium: Team Konrad Motorsport finished third in class with Jürgen Hemker in an Audi R8 LMS GT4 in the second race of the Spezial Tourenwagen Trophy at Oschersleben – the fourth event of the year.
Audi RS 3 LMS (TCR)
Club racing successes: Max Frederik Gruhn won his class in the first of two Spezial Tourenwagen Trophy races held at Oschersleben. The young German was behind the wheel of an Audi RS 3 LMS prepared by Wolf-Power Racing and finished runner-up in class in the second heat.
Coming up next week
03–04/08 Copenhagen (DK), round 4, TCR Denmark
03–06/08 Road America (USA), round 8, IMSA Michelin Pilot Challenge
04–05/08 Aldo Scribante (ZA), round 3, South African GT Championship
04–05/08 Aldo Scribante (ZA), round 3, South African Endurance Championship
04–06/08 Nürburgring (D), round 4, DTM
04–06/08 Nashville (USA), round 6, GT America
05–06/08 Most (CZ), round 4, Eset Cup
05–06/08 Most (CZ), round 5, TCR Eastern Europe
05–06/08 Trois-Rivières (CDN), round 3, Sports Car Championship Canada presented by Michelin
05–06/08 Fuji (J), round 4, Super GT