Audi wins … or do they?
Audi wins … or do they?
Audi triumphed in the opening round of the FIA World Endurance Championship at Silverstone on the weekend only for their victory to be taken away post-race for a technical violation.
Post-race scrutineering revealed that the No.7 car’s front skid block was too thinner than the minimum allowed. The skid block is part of the floor and teams must maintain a minimum thickness of the material.
Running the car lower generates more downforce and additional speed – but running too low can wear the block too thin.
Audi has appealed the stewards decision and hopes that Marcel FÃ¤ssler/AndrÃ© Lotterer and BenoÃ®t TrÃ©luyer’s victory will be restored in an FIA tribunal.
After qualifying on the front row on Saturday, Audi’s initial win was a dramatic return to form with its new updated R18 diesel hybrid.
The disqualification gives the win to Neel Jani, Marc Lieb and Romain Dumas.
The Silverstone event was again an action-packed six hours with the most spectacular incident involving Porsche ace Brandon Hartley who nearly rolled his Porsche LM P1 machine after tangling for a Porsche GTE car.
Prior the exclusion, Audi were thrilled to get back to victory lane – especially Marcel Fassler who has already won this year’s Rolex 24 at Daytona and 12 Hours of Sebring while on loan to Corvette Racing.
“What a riveting race. And the traffic on track made everything even more unpredictable,” Fassler said.
“I was always informed about the time gap with the Porsche that was chasing me. I managed to control the advantage well because the way our Audi R18 felt was awesome.
“A huge ‘thank you’ goes to our trackside squad, as well as to our employees in Neuburg and Neckarsulm. This is their success, too.”
The fiercely contest LM P2 class victory was claimed by the new RGR Sport by Morand squad of former American Le Mans Series PC class champion Ricardo Gonzalez.
The Mexican ace drove with Bruno Senna and Filipe Albuquerque to take the win.
PatrÃ³n Racing ESM backed up their Daytona and Sebring wins with second place for Ryan Dalziel, Chris Cumming and Pipo Derani.
Ferrari starred in GTE-Pro with Davide Rigon and Sam Bird victorious. James Calado and Gianmaria Bruni fought back from a three-minute engine change penalty to claim runner-up position and secure an AF Corse 1-2 finish.
Ford Chip Ganassi Team UK finished fourth and fifth on its European race debut.
In GTE-AM the No.83 Ferrari 458 Italia of Emmanuel Collard, Francois Perrodo and Rui Aguas completed a stellar day for AF Corse with LMGTE Am victory.
— Audi Sport (@Audi__Sport) April 18, 2016
— Porsche LMP1 Team (@Porsche_Team) April 17, 2016