Sunday, October 7, 2012

Weekend Round Up - Audi Motorsport Blog (6-7/10/2012)

By Johan Laubscher

1. The Weekend

Focussing this week on the weekend of 6 - 7 October 2012

2. The Events

  •           Superstars
  •           BTCC
  •           Portuguese GT & IST
  •           VIR Gold Cup
  •           Midas Clubmans
  •           Cup & Tourenwagen Trophy
  •           Mickhausen Hillclimb
  •           Killarney Sports & GT
  •           Slovakia Amatér Rallye 

2.1. Superstars

After a long break the Italian Superstars Championship was back in action this weekend. It was round seven of the series, hosted at Vallelunga. All three of the regular Audi RS5 teams were at the event. Coming into the weekend the young Swede Johan Kristoffersson was lying second in the championship points, only trailing by nineteen points. The RS5 cars have been pulled back in recent months due to performance restrictions, but some of the air restrictor restrictions had been lifted before this weekend, allowing the cars more performance. The RS5 teams knew this track would be good for them, and they did not disappoint. Vallelunga is known to be harsh on tires and with quattro the RS5 cars were at the top of all the sessions. 1-2-3 in qualifying with Kristoffersson taking a pole to flag win in race one ahead of Thomas Schöffler for an Audi 1-2 finish. Race two saw the reverse grid which moved the Audis further back. Despite the starting position Johan moved through the competitors to take his second race win on the day which put him back into the championship lead. Thomas Schöffler finsihed in fourth followed by Gianni Morbidelli in fifth, who drove from a lower starting position. 

2.2. BTCC

Rob Austin Racing arrived at Silverstone with its two Audi A4 cars. Leading up to the event RAR again held the photo on-the-roof campaign to help raise funds for the team. It was the penultimate round of the BTCC season. Small issues held back the Audi A4s and the team qualified outside the top ten. Various drivers received penalties for exceeding track limits during qualifying and this unfortunately affected both Audi drivers, dropping them to lower starting positions. Race one was a superb showing from Rob Austin has he stormed from seventeenth to fifth place. Race two started fast for both Audis, Rob scored another sensational top five finish while Bratt was involved with a crash battling for the top ten. Rob had a blinding start in race three and was up to second place. Contact with the third placed car resulted in Rob dropping to nearly last place. He then began his recovery drive straight back into the top ten with ninth at the checkered flag.

2.3. Portuguese GT & Iberian Supercar Trophy

The penultimate round of the Portuguese GT Championship was held at Estoril. Cesar Campanico and Carlos Vieira from Team Novadriver arrived at the event with the championship lead, aiming to extend the lead for the title. This Portuguese GT event was also part of the Iberian Supercar Trophy (IST). The team got off to a good start by claiming pole position for race one followed by second position for race two. Race one did not go as planned with various problems, two stop-and-go penalties and another penalty resulted in fourth place for the team. Race two started much better for the team as they held good places until, minutes from the end, another stop-and-go dropped them to third. The team did recover from the penalty to finish the race in second place.  

2.4. VIR Gold Cup

The Virginia International Raceway hosted the annual Heacock Classic Gold Cup, also known as the VIR Gold Cup. It is a historics racing event. The Audi R8 (chassis #606) of Travis Engen was at the event. 

2.5. Midas Clubmans

The Midas Clubmans was once again held at its home circuit of Killarney in Cape Town, South Africa. One Audi was entered for this event. After losing an engine at the last meeting, Nieyaaz Modack was back in his ex-Johan Fourie Racing Audi A4. Modack qualified well and finished race one in third but he did not start race two.

2.6. Cup & Tourenwagen Trophy

The finale of the Cup & Tourenwagen Trophy was held at the Nürburgring. Two Audi A3s and one TT took part at the event. The #1 Audi A3 of Rene Freisberg took victory in race one of the weekend ans second in race two.

2.7. Mickhausen Hillclimb

Mickhausen Bergrennen is one of the biggest hillclimb events in Germany. The entry list included various Audi cars, with four Audi 50 racers and the Prospeed Audi Sport quattro S1 replica from Bulgaria. Vláďa Vitver and his ABT-Audi TT-R were entered for Mickhausen but the unfortunate crash during testing two weeks ago sidelined the entry. Vláďa was luckily unharmed in the crash.

2.8. Killarney Sports & GT

The Sports & GT category also took part at Killarney this weekend, alongside the Midas Clubmans. A white Audi R8 spaceframe race car has been developed privately for this championship. The development of the car continues but they had a good weekend. Paul Beachyhead completed the car’s first race finishes this weekend.

2.9. Slovakia Amatér Rallye

The Amatér Rallye Košický Klečenov was held in Slovakia this weekend. The event was won by Jozefa Béreša in his Audi Sport quattro S1 replica.

2.10. Other Audi News

An Audi R8 LMS ultra from Audi Sport customer racing was on display at the Sportlergala 2012 in Kulmbach. Christopher Hasse was one of the drivers who were also at the event.

INR8 is a new sister website to Fourtitude, which covers all of the latest Audi R8 news. The crew from INR8 produced some interesting renders this week using press photos of the Audi R8 LMS ultra. The renders show the Audi R8 LMS ultra with the new facelifted Audi R8 parts. It allows us a glimpse of what a facelifted Audi R8 LMS ultra could look like. If we will ever see the facelift on the race cars remains to be seen. Our take on the story can be read HERE.

Exciting news emerged this week from the Arc Audi Racing Program (Istook’s Motorsport). With the racing season nearing its end the white Audi TT RS of Don Istook has another event on the calendar. They have been invited by Pirelli to participate in the grand opening of the new Circuit of the Americas Formula One track in Austin, to be held on 21 October 2012. It will be very exciting to see the TT RS putting down a few laps at this new race circuit.

3. Next Weekend’s events (13-14/10/2012)

  •           FIA WEC
  •           Blancpain Endurance
  •           Czech MMCR
  •           DMV TCC
  •           Spanish GT
  •           Dutch Supercar
  •           Kerrick Sports Sedans
  •           Brazil GT

All photos are hosted at their respective website which are listed within the Weekend Round Up