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2014 After Road America
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1 Christian Fittipaldi 285
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46 Brendon Hartley 15
46 E.J. Viso 15
47 Memo Gidley 14
47 Alex Gurney 14
48 Scott Mayer 1 3
49 Pierre Kaffer 1
49 Darren Law 1
Audi in 1-2-3 sweep of 24 Hours of LeMans

Win French classic after all 4 Peugeots fail
Sunday, June 13, 2010

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The No. 9 Audi motors to victory

After a fierce battle between the Peugeot and Audi works teams, the German manufacturer has won its ninth victory with a 1-2-3 sweep after all four Peugeots either blew up or had chassis failures.  It was a major embarrassment for the French team in front of their French fans.

The three drivers sharing car 9 – Dumas (FRA), Bernhard (DEU) and Rockenfeller (DEU) –  won here for the first time.

All three have a strong racing record in America. Romain Dumas and Timo Bernhard won several ALMS races, including the Sebring 12 Hours, while driving the Porsche RS of Penske Racing.

Mike Rockenfeller won the Rolex 24 At Daytona earlier this year as a member of the Porsche Action Express Racing team. The 26-year old Rockenfeller was the fourth driver in history to win the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Rolex 24 At Daytona in the same year. A result only achieved by American Al Holbert, Englishman Derek Bell (each twice) and Dutch driver Jan Lammers in the eighties.

The No. 8 Audi was 2nd
This year’s race, run in perfect weather, was exciting from the start to the finish. For some teams this year’s race was over in several minutes. The English Beechdean Mansell team, made up of Nigel Mansell and his sons Greg and Leo, had to retire after only 15 minutes into the race, when Nigel crashed at ‘Indianapolis.’ Early on, both Audi and Peugeot lost one of their cars due to incidents as well.

At this, his first appearance in Le Mans, Marco Andretti (USA) - grandson of Mario - did not make it to the finish either. The Lola he shared with Jani (CHE) and Prost (FRA) had to retire halfway through the race with a broken engine.

Other newcomers who did not make it into the night included the Swiss all-female Ford GT Matech Competition team. Around dusk on Saturday evening, while Natacha Gachnang was at the wheel, an engine fire ended all hopes of the young ladies making history at this edition of the race and left Vanina Ickx as the only female driver remaining. Her race, however, also ended on Sunday morning when she crashed her Lola Aston Martin while in 8th position overall.

In the popular GT2 class, there had been a battle between Porsche, Ferrari and Corvette during most of the night. While leading its class, both Corvettes eventually had to retire: car 63 – driven by O’Connell (USA), Magnussen (DNK) and Garcia (ESP) – was pushed off track by one of the Peugeots, heavily damaging the rear. This eventually led to engine failure and then retirement. The second American car had to retire just minutes later on Sunday morning, also with a broken engine.

In LMP2 Strakka Racing completed a remarkable run in the HPD ARX.01's Le Mans debut. Jonny Kane, Danny Watts and Nick Leventis brought the #42 HPD home in fifth place overall, seven laps ahead of their nearest rivals.

Roland Berville and Julien Canal won the GT1 class in the Larbre Saleen - the first Le Mans class win for the S7R. The car slowed dramatically in the final laps as Gardel preserved it for the finish.

Sunday morning was marked by a number of fortunately small, but dramatic, incidents that included cars in all classes. Teams are tired and many attempt to take advantage of last minute opportunities, on occasion, just pushing too hard.

All the drivers have said it: this is the race where anything can happen, and the action has been non-stop for this 78th edition.

"Everyone at Audi can be proud of this historic exploit. Reliability, efficiency and sustainability are particularly important topics for car manufacturers today. And these are exactly the areas in which we have demonstrated our expertise this weekend," commented Audi Chairman Rupert Stadler, who witnessed the captivating race live on location. "It was one of the most thrilling races in Le Mans history, a do-or-die battle. This one-two-three victory is the fourth 1-2-3 for Audi at Le Mans and no doubt the most valuable victory claimed after the fiercest battle in our company’s history. I express my thanks and great respect to the entire squad. They have performed an incredible and flawless feat of energy. Peugeot was a formidable rival who required us to give everything. We express our respect to the French squad for this."

"After taking third place last year, it was our declared aim to bring the Le Mans trophy back to Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm, and we managed to do this in an impressive way," said Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich. "I’m incredibly proud of this squad and sincerely thank the entire team and everyone who has contributed to this achievement."

The ninth triumph - in total - of the brand at Le Mans was also made possible by a technology which Audi Sport developed for racing during the past three years in strict secrecy: the V10 TDI engine of the Audi R15 TDI with an approximate power output of 440 kW has a turbo-charger with Variable Turbine Geometry (VTG).

VTG turbo-chargers are standard with Audi TDI engines in production vehicles. Their use at Le Mans helps the Audi engineers to continue to develop the technology for smaller, highly efficient turbo engines to be used in the future. "At Le Mans we’re dealing with temperatures above 1,000 degrees centigrade which have not been encountered with production engines so far," explains Ulrich Baretzky, Head of Engine Development at Audi Sport. "As a result of downsizing, production development will enter into similar temperature ranges. This makes VTG another good example of how the technology transfer between motorsport and the production side of the house works at Audi."

In 2010 the demands made on diesel engines were particularly high due to the restrictions imposed by the regulations. "Squeezing higher output out of the engines without sacrificing reliability posed a great challenge which our team mastered in an outstanding manner," said Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich after the race. "We did not use the full potential of the V10 TDI engine this year in order to be absolutely on the safe side. That’s why it was clear to us even before the race that we wouldn’t have the fastest car - but a very reliable and efficient one. The development objective of the R15 plus was 20 percent higher efficiency. We managed to achieve this. We’ve been working very hard for this exploit over the past few months. This makes this success, which was enabled by a perfect team performance as well, even more rewarding."

The victorious Audi R15 TDI with Timo Bernhard (Germany), Romain Dumas (France) and Mike Rockenfeller (Germany) completed a total of 397 laps in the 24 hours. With the covered distance of 5,410 kilometers, the trio broke the 1971 record set by Dr. Helmut Marko and Gijs van Lennep in the Porsche 917 that was considered unbeatable because the Hunaudières straight at that time had no chicanes - another demonstration of the performance capabilities of Audi TDI technology.

Timo Bernhard, Romain Dumas and Mike Rockenfeller drove an absolutely flawless race on their way to their first Le Mans victory and the new historic record. Except for a slow puncture shortly before the end of the race and a right-hand mirror that had come off, the race went without the slightest problems for the winners. Second place was taken by Marcel Fässler, André Lotterer and Benoît Treluyer on whose R15 TDI the front bodywork had to be changed twice after contact with the track barriers.

Porsche factory driver Wolf Henzler won at the 24 Hours of the Le Mans for the first time Sunday, the German winning in GT2 for Team Felbermayr Proton and its Porsche 911 GT3 RSR. Henzler – who drives for Team Falken Tire with Bryan Sellers in the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patr¢n – won by two laps with Marc Lieb and Richard Lietz.

Porsche won at Le Mans in GT2 for the first time since 2007. As was the case throughout the race, GT2 was a battle of attrition. The leading Risi Competizione Ferrari F430 fell out in the 10th hour, and Corvette Racing’s two factory Corvette C6.Rs retired within three hours of each other.

Henzler won in his third start at Le Mans after debuting two years ago with a fifth-place finish. Lieb and Lietz drove Porsches for Flying Lizard Motorsports to start the season at the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Fresh from Florida.

Quotes

Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich (Head of Audi Motorsport): "I am convinced that this was the most difficult Le Mans victory for Audi. We had the strongest competitors one can imagine. We did not start the weekend in a perfect way, but we worked together to reach a very good level quickly. From the outset we planned our strategy to do as long stints as possible and we used every opportunity that was offered with efficiency and reliability to achieve our goal. All drivers have shown a great performance and brought this historic 1-2-3 victory home for Audi. The team has worked perfectly. Thanks to everyone who made this dream result possible for Audi!"

Ralf Jüttner (Technical Director Audi Sport Team Joest): "I can not even describe my feelings yet. This Le Mans race will go down in history. And not just because of the new distance record. But because we live in motorsport at a time in which the reliability is actually not in question. Nobody retires nowadays. The cars normally last. It’s all about who is fast and who is slower. But I have not seen here for ages that such a high pace was demanded. On Friday, I said that I would be happy to watch this Le Mans race as a spectator - just to watch because I was expecting an awesome race. And that’s what it has become. We concentrated on our strengths: reliability and consistency. We wanted to apply pressure - and we managed to. We probably forced our opponents to risk more than they wanted. So they got problems. That it would turn out so extreme for them was unexpected. Nobody could have written such a story book as it eventually turned out. These feelings that come up within seconds are gigantic. Team Joest and Audi Sport form a team at Le Mans for years and have now grown so together that I can say: No matter what is to come, I do not worry anymore. No matter what comes back to the pits: A great job is done there. Also the driver teams were strong. There were new drivers here and some that had been with us for the first time last year. The three cars we had were evenly matched this time, which many had missed last year. Everyone was there for one another. When problems arose - and all the difficulties came from the outside, never from ourselves - the others stepped in. Amazing!"

Timo Bernhard (Audi R15 TDI #9): "It’s incredible! As a child it was always my dream to go to Le Mans. In 2002 I won the GT class, which was already a first step towards my big goal, the overall victory. The fact that I’ve achieved this so early at the age of 29, I can not yet really realize. It is crazy! It will probably still take one or two days until I really know what we achieved. We had a great race without any problems on the car. The Audi R15 TDI has been running perfectly. Mike (Rockefeller), Romain (Dumas) and I have been pushing right from the start. This has paid off. In the end the fight with the Peugeot was getting tighter. But I am convinced that we would have kept the lead anyway - over the distance we just had the right package."

Romain Dumas (Audi R15 TDI #9): "This day is hard to describe. I was sure that there was a chance of winning. Even though the chance might have been small. And this weekend was not only about us drivers. I thank the team, the mechanics and engineers who ensured that everything was great. Thanks also to my teammates. We have shared information among us. We had great help in the race. That was very important. The intelligence of the team was remarkable. All worked together, no one made a mistake. This has paid off in the end. Now we have won the cup back, and that was the goal. I am very satisfied."

Mike Rockenfeller (Audi R15 TDI #9): "It is simply incredible. I am overwhelmed. It was always my big dream, my goal to win Le Mans. At the beginning I had a difficult time at Audi. Now I’m grateful that they had confidence and believed in me. Finally I managed to win, with Timo (Bernhard) and Romain (Dumas). Thank you to everyone. My thanks to Audi, to the Joest team, our crew. Great!"

Marcel Fässler (Audi R15 TDI #8): "What a result after an awesome race! I think nobody expected a triple victory. Incredible! We said to ourselves: We just have to go steady, make no mistakes, and then there will be some reward for us. But that the reward would be like this no one would have thought."

André Lotterer (Audi R15 TDI #8): "We did not expect this: first, second and third place! I am not so long with Audi yet but I am happy for everyone, for the brand, for the team. You can not imagine how much effort the mechanics put into this race. How long they work hard for it. Our race was good. We lost a few seconds due to little things. But otherwise everything was perfect. The car ran like clockwork."

Benoît Treluyer (Audi R15 TDI #8): "A very good result because the race has been difficult. Our opponents Peugeot were very fast. It was challenging, not to make mistakes and still be fast enough. to combine both, was anything but easy. It was not easy for any of the three Audi R15 TDI cars. Now we are all standing on the podium. We are very happy for our team."

Dindo Capello (Audi R15 TDI #7): "It was a very difficult race. We gave away time during the first race hour just due to the unlucky pace car situation. After that everything was ok. We just tried to stay close to Peugeot and we never gave up, we pushed from the beginning until the end. It was bad luck Tom got caught with the BMW. It cost us the chance to fight for the overall victory - it was impossible for car #7 to do any better. But I’m very happy for Audi. Congratulations to everyone! Today was an awesome result for the four rings."

Tom Kristensen (Audi R15 TDI #7): "It has been absolutely fantastic for Audi. Le Mans gives and takes. There is triumph, there is tragedy. This year showed it. Personally I am very proud to be on the winning team. Allan (McNish), Dindo (Capello) and I could have been better as we were the leading Audi when I had the incident with Andy Priaulx. But it is a little bit like a soccer team: When we win we win together. And like on a soccer team everybody will be very happy. But the people who will be most happy will be the ones who score the goals. Today it was a deserved win for Romain Dumas, Timo Bernhard and Mike Rockenfeller. They drove very efficiently into the winning circle at Le Mans. And between triumph and tragedy: The car which wins Le Mans is the best car."

Allan McNish (Audi R15 TDI #7): "I’ve not been involved in a Le Mans like this one in my 10 previous starts. It turned on its head two or three times. From an Audi point of view it was an unbelievable result because we didn’t have the outright pace of Peugeot but Audi had the efficiency and reliability plus the team, structure, drivers and engineers that knew, from experience, how to win Le Mans. The result of our car was dictated by Tom’s incident with Andy Priaulx which was frustrating. But our fight back was intense and we can all be very proud - but that doesn’t mean to say that we can forget about the performance of our French friends as we now must focus on the Intercontinental Cup."

Results

Pos

# Class Drivers Team Car Laps Behind Stops
1. 9 LMP1 M.Rockenfeller, T.Bernhard, R.Dumas Audi Sport North America Audi R15 TDI 397 0.000 33
2. 8 LMP1 A.Lotterer, M.Fassler, B.Treluyer Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R15 TDI 396 -1 lap 33
3. 7 LMP1 T.Kristensen, R.Capello, A.McNish Audi Sport Team Joest Audi R15 TDI 394 -3 laps 33
4. 6 LMP1 S.Ayari, D.Andre, A.Meyrick AIM Team ORECA-Matmut Oreca 01-AIM 369 -28 laps 33
5. 42 LMP2 N.Leventis, D.Watts, J.Kane Strakka Racing HPD ARX.01 367 -30 laps 27
6. 007 LMP1 H.Primat, S.Mucke, A.Fernandez Aston Martin Racing Lola B09/60 Aston Martin 365 -32 laps 30
7. 35 LMP2 M.Lahaye, G.Moreau, J.Charouz OAK Racing Pescarolo 01 Judd 361 -36 laps 29
8. 25 LMP2 M.Newton, T.Erdos, A.Wallace RML Lola B08/80 HPD 358 -39 laps 28
9. 24 LMP2 J.Nicolet, R.Hein, J-F.Yvon OAK Racing Pescarolo 01 Judd 341 -56 laps 26
10. 41 LMP2 K.Ojjeh, T.Greaves, G.Chandalon Team Bruichladdich Ginetta Zytek 09S 341 +2:12.700 31
11. 77 LMGT2 M.Lieb, R.Lietz, W.Hentzler Team Felbermayr Proton Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 338 -59 laps 23
12. 89 LMGT2 D.Farnbacher, A.Simonsen, L.Keen Hankook Team Farnbacher Ferrari F430 GT 336 -61 laps 24
13. 50 LMGT1 R.Berville, J.Canal, G.Gardel Larbre Competition Saleen S7R 331 -66 laps 27
14. 97 LMGT2 M.Holzer, R.Westbrook, T.Scheider BMS Scuderia Italia Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 327 -70 laps 28
15. 72 LMGT1 S.Gregoire, J.Policand, D.Hart Luc Alphand Aventures Chevrolet Corvette C6.R 327 +2:24.241 26
16. 95 LMGT2 G.Fisichella, J.Alesi, T.Vilander AF Corse Ferrari F430 GT 323 -74 laps 23
17. 76 LMGT2 R.Narac, P.Pilet, P.Long IMSA Performance Matmut Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 321 -76 laps 22
18. 28 LMP2 M.Rostan, R.Meichtry, P.Bruneau Race Performance AG Radical SR9 Judd 321 +1:31.736 29
19. 78 LMGT2 J.Muller, A.Farfus, U.Alzen BMW Team Schnitzer BMW M3 GT2 320 -77 laps 27
20. 40 LMP2 M.Amaral, O.Pla, W.Hughes Quifel-ASM Team Ginetta Zytek 09S 318 -79 laps 26
21. 75 LMGT2 P.Van Splunteren, N.Hommerson, L.Machiels Prospeed Competition Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 317 -80 laps 26
22. 52 LMGT1 C.Nygaard, T.Enge, P.Kox Young Driver AMR Aston Martin DBR9 311 -86 laps 22
23. 37 LMP2 P.Salini, S.Salini, T.Gommendy WR / Salini WR Zytek 308 -89 laps 30
24. 88 LMGT2 H.Felbermayr Sr, H.Felbermayr Jr, M.Konopka Team Felbermayr Proton Porsche 911 GT3 RSR 304 -93 laps 24
25. 26 LMP2 D.Brabham, M.Franchitti, M.Werner Highcroft Racing HPD ARX.01 296 -101 laps 26
26. 39 LMP2 J.de Pourtales, H.Noda, J.Kennard KSM Lola B08/47 Judd 291 -106 laps 22
27. 85 LMGT2 T.Coronel, P.Dumbreck, J.Bleekemoelen Spyker Squadron Spyker C8 Laviolette 280 -117 laps 25
28. 11 LMP1 P.Drayson, J.Cocker, E.Pirro Drayson Racing Lola B10/60 Aston Martin 253 -144 laps 30
DNF 1 LMP1 A.Wurz, M.Gene, A.Davidson Team Peugeot Total Peugeot 908 HDi FAP - - .
DNF 2 LMP1 N.Minassian, S.Sarrazin, F.Montagny Team Peugeot Total Peugeot 908 HDi FAP - - .
DNF 3 LMP1 S.Bourdais, P.Lamy, S.Pagenaud Peugeot Sport Total Peugeot 908 HDi FAP - - .
DNF 4 LMP1 O.Panis, N.Lapierre, L.Duval Team ORECA-Matmut Peugeot 908 HDi FAP - - .
DNF 5 LMP1 N.Mansell, G.Mansell, L.Mansell Beechdean Mansell Ginetta Zytek - - .
DNF 12 LMP1 N.Prost, N.Jani, M.Andretti Rebellion Racing Lola B10/60 Rebellion - - .
DNF 13 LMP1 A.Belicchi, J-C.Boullion, G.Smith Rebellion Racing Lola B10/60 Rebellion - - .
DNF 14 LMP1 C.Bouchut, S.Tucker, M.Rodrigues Team Kolles Audi R10 TDI - - .
DNF 15 LMP1 C.Bakkerud, O.Jarvis, C.Albers Team Kolles Audi R10 TDI - - .
DNF 19 LMP1 M.Lewis, B.Willman, T.Burgess Autocon Motorsports Lola B06/10 AER - - .
DNF 29 LMP2 L.Pirri, M.Cioci, P.Perazzini Racing Box Lola B09/80 Judd - - .
DNF 38 LMP2 J.Schell, F.Da Rocha, D.Zollinger Pegasus Racing Norma Judd - - .
DNF 008 LMP1 P.Ragues, V.Ickx, F.Mailleux Signature Plus Lola B09/60 Aston Martin - - .
DNF 009 LMP1 D.Turner, J.Barazi, S.Hancock Aston Martin Racing Lola B09/60 Aston Martin - - .
DNF 60 LMGT1 T.Mutsch, R.Grosjean, J.Hirschi Matech Competition Ford GT Matech - - .
DNF 61 LMGT1 N.Gachnang, R.Frey, C.Allemann Matech Competition Ford GT Matech - - .
DNF 63 LMGT2 J.Magnussen, J.O'Connell, A.Garcia Corvette Racing Chevrolet Corvette C6 ZR1 - - .
DNF 64 LMGT2 O.Gavin, O.Beretta, E.Collard Corvette Racing Chevrolet Corvette C6 ZR1 - - .
DNF 69 LMGT1 A.Yogo, K.Yamanishi, H.Iiri JLOC Lamborghini Murcielago - - .
DNF 70 LMGT1 E.de Doncker, B.Leinders, M.Palttala Marc VDS Racing Ford GT Matech - - .
DNF 73 LMGT1 J.Jousse, X.Maassen, P.Goueslard Luc Alphand Aventures Chevrolet Corvette C6.R - - .
DNF 79 LMGT2 A.Priaulx, D.Muller, D.Werner BMW Team Schnitzer BMW M3 GT2 - - .
DNF 80 LMGT2 S.Neiman, D.Law, J.Bergmeister Flying Lizard Motorsport Porsche 911 GT3 RSR - - .
DNF 81 LMGT2 P.Gentilozzi, R.Dalziel, M.Goossens Jaguar RSR Jaguar XKRS - - .
DNF 82 LMGT2 J.Melo, G.Bruni, P.Kaffer Risi Competizione Ferrari F430 GT - - .
DNF 83 LMGT2 T.Krohn, N.Jonsson, E.van de Poele Risi Competizione Ferrari F430 GT - - .
DNF 92 LMGT2 R.Bell, T.Sugden, B.Miller JMW Motorsport Aston Martin Vantage - - .
DNF 96 LMGT2 L.Perez Companc, M.Russo, M.Salo AF Corse Ferrari F430 GT - - .

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