as Diesel-powered R10 TDI wins MOBIL 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring
Audi Sport North America made history Saturday as the diesel-powered Audi R10 TDI of Tom Kristensen, Allan McNish and Rinaldo Capello won the Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring. The new prototype is the first diesel car in the world to win a major sports car race.
“Our R10 TDI is a real racing car,” Kristensen said. “Over two stints, you can drive it very precisely, which is a combination of the diesel power and immense torque. It’s simply pure fun to drive it.”
The No. 2 Audi won the opening race of the 2006 American Le Mans Series by three laps over Intersport Racing’s No. 37 Lola B05/40-AER. After winning the pole position, the No. 2 car had to have its heat exchanger switched before the race and had to start the race from pit lane and in 34th position. But by the two-hour mark, the pole-sitting car had moved back into the lead when the No. 1 sister car had to pit.
Kristensen gave the No. 2 car the lead for good when Marco Werner, driving with defending Series champions Frank Biela and Emanuele Pirro in the No. 1 Audi R10 TDI, pulled the car into the garage just shy of the four-hour mark. Shortly thereafter, the car was retired due to overheating.
That left Kristensen, Capello and McNish to comfortably run out front. Kristensen added yet another record to his already impressive résumé. He is now has four overall wins at Sebring, the most in the race’s 54-year history. He also has won the 24 Hours of Le Mans seven times, including the last six in a row.