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  Archive of Audi R8 Race Reports/News/Photos 2003  
   
 

Audi R8  2001  -  2002  -  2003  -  2004  -  2005  -  2006

 
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Champion Racing  - 2003 Sebring

 
     
 

Emanuele Pirro Qualifies ADT/Champion Audi 2nd for 51st Sebring 12 Hours

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Late-Breaking Qualifying News... Following official qualifying for Saturday's 51st Sebring 12 Hour race, the pair of Bentley prototypes which had set the pole and second-fastest times had their qualifying times disallowed due to rules infractions, and will start the race from the back of the grid. This elevates the Joest Audi R8 to Pole position and the ADT/Champion Audi R8 to second starting position, meaning Audi R8's will start on the front row at Sebring for the fourth straight year.

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2000 Sebring race winner Emanuele Pirro set the fourth fastest time in the 25-minute qualifying session today (THURSDAY) driving the 2002-spec ADT Champion Audi R8. (but see late-breaking news above...)

In terms of qualifying, Im a little disappointed only to be fourth on the grid but for the race, I believe we have a very good set-up, commented 2001 American Le Mans Series champion Pirro.

Im very optimistic we will have a good race. This will be my first race for Champion and Im determined that its a good one.

JJ Lehto is also be experiencing his maiden American Le Mans Series race with the Florida-based Champion team in Saturdays event which starts at 10.30am. Practice this week has gone well. All three drivers like the same set-up which is very important so we dont make compromises.

I think I have a good chance of repeating my 1999 Sebring victory but the competition is tough. Not only from the other two Audis, but the two Bentleys and also the LMP675 Lolas are going to be strong. Stay out of trouble and being consistent is the key.

1984 & 97 Sebring winner Stefan Johansson is also optimistic that it will be third time lucky for Champion Racing who have finished third and second in the corresponding race over the past two years.

Stefan said: Our car has been very good since we arrived last Friday Im very happy with it. Weve a decent balance and I believe well have a good race. Ive got two good team-mates and the team has really gelled Im very hopeful of a podium.

Brad Kettler, Champion Racing Technical Director:

"I'm satisfied with qualifying but I believe the race will better. The drivers are comfortable and the team are in excellent spirits and ready for a successful race - we're in a good position."

Team ADT Champion Racing - 2002-spec Audi R8 - Driver line-up: Stefan Johansson (46). Born: Vxj, Sweden. Lives: Indianapolis, US JJ Lehto (36). Born: Espoo, Finland. Lives: Monte Carlo, Monaco. Emanuele Pirro (41). Born: Rome, Italy. Lives: Monte Carlo, Monaco / Rome.

Sebring International Raceway, 13 March - Qualifying (Pirro).

Qualified: 4th (1min 49.355secs), 121.805mph (average speed).

Champion Racing ALMS Sebring Formguide (Audi R8).

2001 Kelleners/Schroeder/Wallace: Qualified 3rd. Result 3rd. 2002 Johansson/Lammers/Wallace: Qualified 5th. Result 2nd.

 
     
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