A great addition to the Audi team completing the three R15 cars entered for the Le Mans 24 hour race. Just imagine if Audi and the Audi R15 took all three podium spots!
Porsche works drivers Timo Bernhard (Germany) and Romain Dumas (France) will pilot an Audi R15 TDI at the Le Mans 24 hour race (13/14 June). As the two most successful Porsche pilots of the last years, they join the driver line up of the Ingolstadt company. Together, Bernhard and Dumas won all titles in the American Le Mans Series with the RS Spyder and for 2009 contest the Grand-Am Series in a Porsche Riley for Penske Racing.
Both Porsche works drivers are amongst the world’s most experienced and successful sports car pilots. Timo Bernhard (28) won the 12 Hours of Sebring in 2008, celebrated overall victory in 2003 at the Daytona 24 Hours and over the last three years proved unbeatable at the Nürburgring 24 hour race. In Le Mans he won the GT class in 2002. With Penske Racing, Bernhard secured for Porsche the drivers’ championship and the team title in 2007 and 2008 as well as the chassis and engine classification in the American Le Mans Series. ‘The Le Mans 24 Hour event is the only long distance race where I haven’t yet won the overall classification. I’m absolutely thrilled to fight for victory this year with the Audi R15 TDI,’ says Timo Bernhard. ‘At the 12 Hours of Sebring a fortnight ago you could already see that the R15 was a fast and reliable car. Now I can’t wait for the first test drives.’
Romain Dumas (31) was already loaned out to an LMP1 team over the last two years. He contested the race for the squad under Henri Pescarolo and claimed third overall in 2007. During the last two years he paired up with Timo Bernhard to clinch overall victory at the 24 hour race on the Nürburgring Nordschleife in a Porsche 911 GT3 RSR. He also secured the American Le Mans Series title in 2007 and 2008 with his team mate. ‘As a Frenchman, the Le Mans 24 Hours has a very special meaning. Every young driver dreams of climbing to the top of the podium in Le Mans,’ explains Dumas. ‘I’m ecstatic to be driving a winner car. Thanks to Porsche and Audi who have both made this possible.’
Porsche’s head of motorsport, Hartmut Kristen, is also looking forward to working with Audi: ‘Timo Bernhard and Romain Dumas are without doubt two of the best drivers at the wheel of a sports prototype. That’s why we are happy to lend them to our colleagues in Ingolstadt. Now the cooperation between the Porsche and Audi brands will also bear fruit in motorsport.