The eagery awaited debut of the Audi R8 LMS entered by the team Black Falcon was crowned with success at the opening race of the VLN Langstreckenmeisterschaft Nürburgring. The first pole position ever for Audi in the VLN history and overall position seven in the race which faced such a first class entry, the VLN Champion team had a more than successful start in the top of the most successful GT and Touring Car series in Europe.
The Team Black Falcon had originally scheduled this first round of the VLN Langstreckenmeisterschaft to be merely an advanced test for the new Audi R8 LMS race car but at the end of the timed practice, this rather cautious project was caught up by reality. Under very difficult weather and track conditions it was the Black Falcon new team member Johannes Stuck who, with a time of 8:37,102 minutes, brought a car with start number 1 onto start position 1 for the first time ever in the VLN history. At the same time, Black Falcon achieved the first pole position ever for Audi in the endurance racing championship.
‘Everything was simply running perfectly today’, said Johannes Stuck after the timed practice. ‘The R8 felt really very good and the tyres worked perfectly despite the low outside temperatures. I realized from the very beginning of the lap that I was really very quick considering these difficult track conditions. I had a big smile in my face all over the complete lap because everything was so impeccable. I am now simply happy that we even gained pole position in the end.’
Johannes Stuck was then also able to dominate the exciting start of the race and with the fastest lap time of 8:27,650 minutes underlined again the potential both of car and driver. In the battles which followed in the next laps, Stuck however backed off deliberately several times. The motto for the first race of the season was not at all to take too big risks but rather collect as much experience as possible with the Audi R8 LMS.
The other two drivers of the R8 team with number one, the two VLN Champions Sean-Paul Breslin and Christer Jöns, then followed the same principle. They, too, got used to the new race car very quickly and completed similar lap times as Stuck after a few turns.
The whole team, inlcuding the partners and sponsors of Black Flacon, were more than happy when Jöns took the chequered flag after four hours race time. This first race participation for the Audi R8 LMS finished with an excellent 7th overall position and a fifth place in class SP9 for the team Black Falcon.
The second R8 team with drivers Vimal Mehta, Bona Ventura and Sean-Patrick Breslin, too, finished the race at the debut of the R8. All of the three drivers used the race to gain a lot of experience with the GT3 race car at the Nordschleife.
Another Black Falcon team with Russian drivers Oleg Volin and Evgeniy Vertunov had a very good race in class V5 of series production cars. Vertunov, the WRC rally driver and Russian Champion of 2007, and his team mate Volin achieved second position in their class.
Philip Leisen, Carsten Knechtges and current VLN Champion Alex Böhm celebrated a class win at the end of the race and thus completed the almost perfect start of the season for the Team Black Falcon.”