Belgian Audi Club Team WRT Press Release
- Four Audi R8 LMSultra entered in the Blancpain Sprint Series and three in the BlancpainEndurance Series
- New Audi R8 LMS tojoin in selected enduro events
- Driver line-upscombine experience and youth, with Robin Frijns and Jean-Karl Vernay as mostrecent stellar additions
- Vanthoor-Winkelhock-Rastto defend their title at Total 24 Hours of Spa
The Belgian Audi Club Team WRT is prepared for theendeavour, as shown today in its premises in Baudour, Belgium where the 2015racing programme was unveiled to the press. The entire team is proud to embarkin what is the sixth year of partnership between the Belgian Audi Club, TeamWRT and the Audi brand, and also the sixth consecutive season in SRO-promotedchampionships. With a renewed and strengthened driver line-up, the outfit ismore committed than ever to excellence and thrilled to have soon thepossibility of taking to the track the new generation of the Audi R8 LMS racer.
Stippler, Vanthoor,Ide, Mies or Sandström, and also to having been able to attract people of thelikes of Richelmi, Frijns and Vernay, just to make some names, who bringmuch-valued fresh blood. Both things mean a lot to us.“
Vosse goes on: “Clearly, 2015 will be an interesting season. On one hand, we have thevery exciting task to defend many titles after a very successful 2014 campaign;on the other, it will be a year of transition, as the new generation of theAudi R8 LMS comes gradually into the scene. I am sure it will represent asignificant step forward, in terms of performance and reliability, as the newcar is the fruit of everything Audi engineers have learnt in the past years,and it is a privilege for us to have the possibility to run the new car inselected events. It is also a key year for Team WRT, as we have expanded intonew arenas, successfully debuting in ice races at the Trophée Andros over thewinter, or assisting a Japanese team in preparing the R8 LMS ultra they boughtfrom us and that will race in the Japanese GT300 series.”
While the Belgian Audi Club Team WRT hasfurther strengthened its staff, key top managers have not changed, with RenéVerbist overseeing all technical aspects and Pierre Dieudonné and ThierryTassin sharing sporting directorship duties. The squad is therefore perfectlyfit to embark on the racing programme outlined below.
The team will enter in the 7 rounds of theBlancpain Sprint Series four Audis R8 LMS ultra, all in the Pro category. Car#1 will be entrusted to Laurens Vanthoor and Robin Frijns, with the Belgo-Dutch23-year-old driver and former FR 3.5 Champion doing his debut in GT racing. Car#2 will be for Enzo Ide-Christopher Mies, with the two “Stéphanes of Monaco”,Ortelli and Richelmi, sharing car #3 and Frank Stippler-James Nash pairing incar #4.
Blancpain Endurance Series
Three cars will be also entered in theBlancpain Endurance Series. While the car entered in Pro-Am will be entrustedto French GT drivers Laurent Pasquali and Sacha Bottemanne and young DutchmanMax Koebolt, who all debut in the team, the two Pro cars will have somehowchanging line-ups, which will be announced ahead of every event. Still, the mostusual line-up configuration will see Laurens Vanthoor, Robin Frijns and anothernew addition, French GT star Jean-Karl Vernay share #1 and Stéphane Ortelli,Stéphane Richelmi and Frank Stippler driving car #2.
It is in this championship that, with thesupport of Audi Sport, the Belgian Audi Club Team WRT will have the opportunityto race the new Audi R8 LMS, recently unveiled at the Geneva Motor Show. Oneunit will be used at Monza (with Nico Müller joining Stippler and Ortelli atthe wheel) and another will be entered at the Ricard 1000 km race for LaurensVanthoor-Markus Winkelhock-René Rast.
Total 24 Hours of Spa
Although part of the Blancpain EnduranceSeries, the Total 24 Hours of Spa is a race completely apart, as we all know.For the Ardennes enduro, Vanthoor-Winkelhock-Rast will defend their title atthe wheel of the new Audi R8 LMS, a model that also Ortelli-Stippler-Müllerwill have, with Frijns-Richelmi-Vernay being entrusted an R8 LMS ultra.
ADAC 24 Hours of theNürburgring
This year too, the Belgian Audi Club Team WRTwill live the excitement of the “Green Hell” and be part of Audi’s offensive,with two new R8 LMS. The line-ups for the ‘Ring are Laurens Vanthoor-EdwardSandström-Nico Müller-Christopher Mies on one hand, and Laurens Vanthoor-PierreKaffer-Niki Thiim-Chister Jöns on the other.
The first 2015 outing is round the corner, asthe Blancpain Sprint Series kicks-off on Easter weekend (4-6) at the CircuitPaul Armagnac in Nogaro, Southwest France. As customary, the Coupes de Pâques races of 1 hour each takeplace on Easter Sunday (Qualifying Race at 14:15 CET) and Monday (Main Race at13:10). Follow all the action (including live timing and commented TVwebstreaming) on www.blancpain-gt-series.com
Photo credit: Audi Communications - Motorsport