Audi has claimed an historic one-two victory in the sixth round of the FIA World Endurance Championship in Bahrain, marking a fifth win out of six in the season so far.
The race took place last weekend in the desert of Sakhir and saw the luxury vehicle manufacturer enter two Audi R18 e-tron Quattro vehicles.
Marcel Fassler, Andre Lotterer and Benoit Treluyer were drivers for the winning Audi team, with Tom Kristensen and Allan McNish driving in the sister car, which came in second.
A number of setbacks beset Audi throughout, almost ending their chances of this commanding victory, including an average track temperature of 45 degrees Celsius, which was extremely demanding upon the tyres.
Meanwhile, the air temperature of 34 degrees in the cockpit meant the drivers were not in for a cool race either.
Ralf Juttner, technical director at Audi Sport Team Joest, commented: “The race didn’t seem to me like a six-hour race but like 24 hours because there was so much happening. For the drivers, it was extremely rough.
“We once tried a double stint with Andre [Lotterer] but realised that that was really pushing the limits. That’s why we opted for shorter stints again, with respect to the drivers as well as the tyres.”
The team of Fassler/Lotterer/Treluyer completed 191 laps during the allotted race period, with their sister team of Kristensen/McNish completing just one less. Third-placed HPD-Honda were six laps shy of the winners.
It was the third time this season that Fassler/Lotterer/Treluyer have come away with the win, adding to their victories at Le Mans and Silverstone.
Last month also witnessed an unlikely victor in the London to Athens Endurance Rally, with Al Young and his wife Fiona taking the chequered flag in a Smart Roadster.
The couple averaged 40 mph over the 4,000-mile course, beating a host of top sports cars along the way, including a number of Lotus models, Porsches and Jaguars.
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Posted by Mark Thompson