Press release

Ingolstadt, 2012-09-23

Motorsport Newsletter 37/2012: Craig Lowndes wins with Audi in Australia

  • Australian touring car legend wins in Audi R8 LMS ultra
  • Audi factory driver visits event in Neuburg an der Donau
  • Marcel Fässler and his wife contest mountain bike competition

The multiple Australian touring car champion Craig Lowndes celebrated a race victory and a further podium finish in an Audi R8 LMS ultra at the fifth round of the Australian GT Championship.

Triumph in Australia: Craig Lowndes drove to victory from third on the grid at the fifth Australian GT Championship race weekend at Philip Island. As a result, the Australian presented the Audi R8 LMS with its second win following victory in the opening round of the season by Warren Luff in Adelaide. In the second race Lowndes collected another podium result for the One World Bar team by finishing in third place. In the last two years he had already put in some excellent performances with Audi Sport customer racing in the Bathurst 12 Hours.

Support for the children: Rahel Frey campaigned for the younger members of society on Sunday. On World Children’s Day she visited the event organized by the Kreisjugendring, KJR (District Youth Association) in Neuburg an der Donau not far from the Audi site Ingolstadt. During an autograph session the Swiss girl’s signatures were highly sought after. The Audi factory driver demonstrated her racing motorsport talent during a competition with radio-controlled model cars.

Sunday sport: Marcel and Isabel Fässler contested the 16th Iron Bike Race Einsiedeln. The Audi factory driver and his wife trampled on the pedals along a 53 kilometer mountain trail on Sunday and, in the process, overcame a difference in altitude of 1,300 meters. At the end of the mountain bike race around their hometown the Le Mans winner was delighted about his 9th position despite breaking a spoke on the rear wheel, his wife was 9th.

Advertizing for his home race: next Wednesday Miguel Molina bangs the drum for the ninth DTM race, which is held four days later at Valencia. In the afternoon the Spaniard visits the Deutsche Schule Valencia (DSV) to inspire the young pupils for the DTM. Later in the evening the Audi factory driver signs autographs in the center of the rich in tradition town Mercado de Colón.

School days revisited: Oliver Jarvis returned to Ely in the British county of Cambridgeshire for one day on Tuesday. Today’s Audi factory drivers attended the King’s Ely School, one of the country’s oldest educational establishments, between the seventh and eleventh grades. Jarvis gave lectures about his education and career to different classes, signed autographs and met teachers – including several who had even taught him during his school years.

Expert information: Television viewers in Denmark enjoyed the expert analysis given by co-commentator Tom Kristensen during the Singapore Grand Prix. His Audi team mate Allan McNish also visited the race in Asia where he worked as one of three race stewards for the world motorsport governing body FIA.

Championship lead extended: César Campaniço/Carlos Vieira increased their lead in the Portuguese GT Championship. The duo celebrated two race wins at Braga last weekend in their Audi R8 LMS ultra and now leads their closest rivals by 34 points.

Delight at the ‘Ring’: Stéphane Ortelli and Laurens Vanthoor from the Belgian Audi Club Team WRT took second place in the qualification race with the Audi R8 LMS ultra at the penultimate race weekend of the FIA GT1 World Championship season at Nürburgring.

Audi successful in Italy: Davide di Benedetto/Alex Frassineti and Andrea Sonvico/Dindo Capello from Audi Sport Team Italia took second and third positions respectively in the Audi R8 LMS ultra at the sixth round of the Italian GT Championship at Mugello. In race two di Benedetto/Alex Frassineti finished third.

A word from ... Tom Kristensen

In the three remaining rounds of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) you race with the R18 e-tron quattro instead of the R18 ultra. What are the strengths of the hybrid car?

We put in a good performance with the R18 e-tron quattro at the 24 Hours of Le Mans, where the car proved that it can win this important endurance race first time out. Since then development at Audi Sport has not stood still. I’m really looking forward to returning in Audi’s hybrid sportscar from the sixth round onwards. The car’s greatest advantage is in traffic and under acceleration.
Allan McNish and you are only 7.5 points behind the championship leaders Marcel Fässler/André Lotterer/Benoît Tréluyer. There are still 78 points to be awarded this season. How do you judge your chances of leading the standings again, as was the car after Sebring and Le Mans?

I think Allan and I have maintained our chances of being able to fight for the drivers’ title for the rest of the 2012 season. We had good races at Silverstone and in Brazil, even if things didn’t go completely according to plan there. With the R18 e-tron quattro, which we haven’t driven since Le Mans in June, we can now accelerate just as well as our competitors. This helps in the title fight, which is still wide open. I promise every fan of our sport that they can look forward to a great and fair battle royal all the way to the finale.

The next WEC race is in the desert. What are you expecting from the sixth race?
Everything will be new; the race in Bahrain differs fundamentally from every other race. The track is in the desert, so sand and possibly also the wind will have a particularly special impact. We are expecting it to be very hot. It’ll be pretty hard for man and machine. And on top of this, the majority of the race will be staged in the dark. This makes the competition in an already interesting WEC debut season even more appealing.

Coming up next week

29.09. Nürburgring (D), VLN endurance championship, round 9
29.09. Bahrain (BRN), WEC, round 6
29.09. Donington (GB), British GT Championship, round 7
29.09. Lime Rock (USA), GRAND-AM, round 13
30.09. Valencia (E), DTM, round 9
30.09. Hockenheim (D), ADAC GT Masters, round 8
30.09. Le Mans (F), French GT Championship, round 6
30.09. Autopolis (J), Super GT round 7 and GT Asia round 5
30.09. Donington (GB), FIA GT1 World Championship, round 9

– End –

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Motorsport Newsletter 37/2012
(PDF, 161 KB)