Saturday, April 25, 2015

World RX: Ups and downs for Audi drivers in Montalegre opening day

By Tarek Ramchani

A very wet Montalegre circuit hosted today's FIA World Rallycross Championship action. The Audi drivers faced a lot of bad luck and ended day 1 with some ups and downs.

Best ranked Audi driver after today's two heats is Mattias Ekstrom in eighth place overall. The EKS team owner and double DTM champion was eighth in Heat 1 and tenth in Heat 2. Earlier today Eki lead the open practice session with his Audi S1.

Bad luck hit his team-mate Anton Marklund. The Swedish driver flipped his #92 Audi S1 in Heat 1. Anton was unharmed. Later in Heat 2 his race stopped right after the start of the race.

Robin Larsson who is debuting in FIA World Rallycross Championship this year performed very well but faced bad luck too driving his Audi A1. The 2014 Euro RX champion was fourth fastest in Heat 1 but had a DNF later in Heat 2. At the end of the day, Robin Larsson is fifteenth overall.

A very tough day for ALL-INKL Münnich Motorsport and their Audi S3 RXs. best result for the German team was a fifteenth place for René Münnich in Heat 2. His team-mate Alx Danielsson did not take part in the two heats of the day following suspension issues in the open practice session

Following day 1 action in Portugal, it is Andreas Bakkerud who leads overall with his Ford Fiesta ST. Second place went to Timmy Hansen with the factory Peugeot 208. Third is the reingring champion Petter Solberg behind the wheel of his Citroen DS3.

World RX drivers will be back on track tomorrow for Heat 3, Heat 4, Semi-Finals and the big Final.

Heat 1 results are here.
Heat 2 results are here.
The overall standing after Day 1 is here.

Photo credit:  World RX 

VLN: Maiden victory for the new Audi R8 LMS at the Nürburgring, 1-2 Audi Sport Team WRT

By Tarek Ramchani

An extraordinary VLN Endurance Championship second round for Audi at the Nürburgring. The brand new Audi R8 LMS scored its first ever victory, a brilliant 1-2 win.

At the end of the 4-hour event, Audi Sport Team WRT scored a fantastic 1-2 with their new R8 LMS cars. The winning #10 machine was shared by Christopher Mies and Nico Müller.

Their team-mates Laurens Vanthoor and Pierre Kaffer were right behind taking a strong second place overall behind the wheel of the #37 Audi R8 LMS.

The #11 Audi R8 LMS ultra from Audi race experience took an honorable tenth place overall. The car was shared by Marchy Lee, Franky Cheng and Shaun Thong. The second Audi race experience entry ended in seventeenth place overall with drivers Rod Salmon and Yoong Loong.

The privately built Audi R8 from Düchting Motorsport won the SP8 class and and finished the race in position sixteen overall. While the SP3T class was an all Audi TT RS affair

Photo credit: Audi Media

Friday, April 24, 2015

VIDEO: Montalegre RX weekend preview - 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship opener

And here we go, the 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship is about to start. Watch this great racing weekend preview from Montalegre. Twenty-one Supercars will enter the event including five Audis.

Our FIA World Rallycross Championship guide is here.

Photo credit:  World RX

Thursday, April 23, 2015

World RX: 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship media guide

By Tarek Ramchani

Here are all the informations and links you need to follow the 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship. Five Audi Supercars representing three different teams will enter the second edition of World RX.

The Audi teams:

Car: Audi S1
Country: Sweden
Team owner: Mattias Ekström
Drivers: Mattias Ekström and Anton Marklund
Medias: Website - Facebook - Twitter
ALL-INKL Münnich Motorsport
Car: Audi S3
Country: Germany
Team owner: René Münnich
Drivers: René Münnich and Alx Danielsson
Medias: Website - Facebook - Twitter
Larsson Jernberg Racing
Car: Audi A1
Country: Sweden
Team owner: Robin Larsson
Drivers: Robin Larsson
Medias: Website - Facebook - Twitter

The Audi drivers:

Anton Marklund

Car: Audi S1
Country: Sweden
Team: EKS
Medias: Website - Facebook - Twitter

Mattias Ekström

Car: Audi S1
Country: Sweden
Team: EKS
Medias: Website - Facebook - Twitter

Robin Larsson

Car: Audi A1
Country: Sweden
Team: Larsson Jernberg Racing
Medias: Website - Facebook - Twitter

Alx Danielsson

Car: Audi S3
Country: Sweden
Team: ALL-INKL Münnich Motorsport
Medias: Website - Twitter
René Münnich

Car: Audi S3
Country: Germany
Team: ALL-INKL Münnich Motorsport

2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship calendar: 

FIA World Rallycross Championship official medias: 

Official website
Official Facebook page
Official Twitter account
Official Youtube channel

Independent websites:

The Checkered Flag
Pure Rallycross
Rallycross Online
Rallycross World
Rallycross Hungary

Independent Twitter accounts:

Pure Rallycross
TCF X-Treme (by The Checkered Flag)
Rallycross World
Infos Rallycross (French)

People to follow: 

Andrew Coley (World RX commentator)
Rachel Covers (World RX media manager)
Martin Anayi (World RX managing director)
Phil Kinch (World RX writer at The Checkered Flag)
Hal Ridge (World RX writer at Autosport)

Super GT: Hitotsuyama Racing and Racing Tech Audi R8 LMS ultras at Audi Forum Tokyo

Photos with the Audi R8 LMS ultra cars from Hitotsuyama Racing and Racing Tech at Audi Forum Tokyo. A very special guest was on site, André Lotterer the 3-time Le Mans 24 Hours winner and 2015 FIA WEC points leader.

The teams are racing in the demanding Super GT series with support from Audi Japan. In the opening round Hitotsuyama Racing took a strong third place and Racing Tech were a position behind in fourth place within the GT300 class.

Photo credit: RacerLink Japan / Hitotsuyama Racing / Racing Tech

TT Cup: International stars as guest starters in Audi Sport TT Cup


Audi Press Release

For the opening of the Audi Sport TT Cup at Hockenheim on the first May weekend, two rallycross stars will battle for bragging rights: Guest starters Tanner Foust (USA) and Toomas Heikkinen (FIN) pit themselves against the permanent competitors. Ski jump Olympic GOLD medalist and World Champion Sven Hannawald also joins the grid.

The two races at the Hockenheimring on Saturday and Sunday should provide the fans with exciting wheel-to-wheel action. In addition to the 18 international talents, who fight for championship points, the six guest drivers should also spice up the action. “We want to offer the motorsport fans at each of the six Audi Sport TT Cup events fascinating battles between drivers from a specific métier,” says Rolf Michl, Project Leader Audi Sport TT Cup. “For the Hockenheimring we were successful. I expect to see Tanner Foust and Toomas Heikkinen make some incredible overtaking maneuvers.”

Foust is a superstar in the USA. The triple GOLD medal winner in the X-Games currently drives in the Global Rallycross Championship (GRC) and moderates the motorsport magazine program Top Gear. In Europe, the 41-year old participates in selected rounds of the FIA World Rallycross Championship, including a world championship round at the Hockenheimring. Where he meets his adversary Heikkinen. The 24-year old Finn was World Rallycross Championship runner-up in 2014. “I’m looking forward enormously to racing again on a circuit,” says Heikkinen, who last competed on a permanent race track in Formula Renault in 2009.

Another celebrity – former ski jumper Sven Hannawald – also joins the grid at Hockenheim. The VW brand ambassador is an enthusiastic amateur racing driver who started in motorsport about ten years ago. “Racing has always been very appealing to me,” says Hannawald. “The challenges on the track are comparable with those in ski jumping. You have to react very quickly and be fully focused in both sports. This fascinates me.” Three journalists with racing experience complete the field of six guest starters.

A series of strong partners supports the Audi Sport TT Cup in its premiere season. In addition to tire partner Hankook, REHAU and AMAG Austria Metall AG also support the new Audi one-make cup. REHAU is the leading system and service provider of polymer-based solutions in the fields of construction, automotive and industry. AMAG Austria Metall AG, based in Ranshofen, is Austria’s leading manufacturer of semi-finished and cast aluminum products for the processing industries.

The new racing series also generates great interest at AUDI AG. Audi Top Service and Audi Consulting are also partners of the Audi Sport TT Cup. Audi Top Service represents faultless repair quality and excellent customer service. This is the foundation for customer enthusiasm. Because as in motorsport, excellence and teamwork are the prerequisites for long-term success in the daily service business. For Audi Consulting, the in-house top management consultancy of AUDI AG, the Audi Sport TT Cup is an attractive environment in which to meet and interact with talents interested in automobiles and to inspire them for a career at Audi.

Photo credit: Audi Media

Italian GT: Audi Sport Italia back with two R8 LMS ultra cars

By Tarek Ramchani

It's official now, Audi Sport Italia is heading back to Italian GT Championship with two cars. The Audi Italia official dealer team will feature three familiar faces and a new one.

Once again the Audi Sport Italia effort will be lead by Audi legend Dindo Capello. He will share the first car with him team-mate from the 2014 season, Emanele Zonzini. The two drivers had some ups and downs last season in the Italian GT Championship with their R8 LMS ultra.

The team's second car will have be in the hands of Marco Mapelli and Andrea Amici. In 2014 Marco Mapello narrowly missed the Italian GT Championship crown in the season finale at Monza. Andrea Amici is a new comer to the team, he won the Lamborghini Super Trofeo one make series.

Audi Sport Italia will try to bring back the overall championship title. The Emilio Radaelli managed squad will face strong rivals representing BMW, McLaren, Porsche and other brands.

The 2015 Italian GT Championship will kick off at the Vallelunga circuit, May the 2nd.

Photo credit: Audi Sport Italia

World RX: EKS Audi ready for FIA World Rallycross Championship opener at Montalegre

EKS Press Release

EKS is on its way to the season opener of the 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship in Montalegre, Portugal this weekend. It will be the first outing of Mattias Ekström and the entire EKS team at the track, which is located in the far north of the country. The only EKS member with any experience of the track is Anton Marklund. 2014 he reached the very first final in World RX history and finished fifth overall.

This year Anton is looking for more on the tricky track, with big kerbs and a tight first corner. In his Audi S1 EKS RX quattro the Swede is aiming for the podium – at least. To become more concrete, the target of both him and Mattias is the top step at the end of the weekend. “Last year we were able to surprise a couple of competitors and many of these probably wonder what we have done during the winter”, says Mattias. “The goal is to leave Montalegre with more points than the other teams.”

Keep in mind …

Lots of surprises will be on board of our two trailers and we promise to deliver great entertainment, both on and off the track. EKS Friday’s will start Friday, 24 April at 17.00. Please join us. Mattias, Anton and our two Audi S1 EKS RX quattro will be there as well.

About Montalegre RX

Location: 150 km north-east of Porto, 900 metres above sea level
Residents: app. 1,800
Track length: 1,520 m
Tarmac / Gravel: 60 / 40 %
Supercar entrants: 21
EKS drivers: #10 Mattias Ekström, #92 Anton Marklund

Where to watch live …

UK & Ireland: British Eurosport (as-live Sunday, 19.00 BST)
Portugal: Sport TV (Sunday, 14.00–16.00 BST)
Sweden: Viasat Motors (Sunday, 15.00–17.00 CEST), Viasat Sport (Sunday, 16.00–17.00 CEST), TV10 (Sunday, 16.00–17.00 CEST)
Germany: Livestream (Sunday, 15.00–17.00 CEST)

Schedule (local time)

Friday, 24 April
16.00 World RX Press Conference and Draw for Heat 1
17.00–18.00 EKS Friday’s

Saturday, 25 April
11.30–13.30 RX Open Practice
14.00 RX Heat 1 & 2

Sunday, 26 April
09.00–10.00 RX Warm-up
10.30 RX Heat 3 & 4
15.00 Supercar Finals

Don’t forget to use …


Photo credit: EKS

VLN: Strong Audi entries at the Nürburgring for round 2

By Tarek Ramchani

A full field of Audi race cars will enter the second round of the VLN Endurance Championship this weekend at the Nürburgring Nordschleife.

In the upper SP9 class, no less than six cars will fight for the overall victory. The Audi GT3 squad will include four brand new Audi R8 LMS cars. The Belgians from Audi Sport Team WRT will run two cars. The Nürburgring based Audi Sport Team Phoenix will enter the other two new GT3 racers from quattro GmbH.

Two Audi R8 LMS ultra cars will enter the 4-hour endurance race. Both cars are coming from Audi race experience.

The SP8 class will see the return of the privateer Audi R8 from Düchting Motorsport

The SP3T class will feature many Audi TT, TTS and TT RS cars. The SP4T class will have only one car, an Audi TT RS.

The qualifying session will be held on Saturday morning. The 4-hour endurance event will follow in the afternoon.

Photo credit: Audi Media

Nürburgring 24 Hours: Seven Audi R8 LMS and ultra cars in the Nordschleife classic

By Tarek Ramchani

The provisional entry list for the upcoming Nürburgring 24 Hours race has been released. The Audi brand will be very well represented in the upper SP9 class and will target a third outright victory at the Green Hell.

Seven Audi R8 LMS and ultra cars will enter the demanding Nürburgring Nordschleife classic coming from four different teams.

Four brand new Audi R8 LMS cars will be fielded as a full factory effort. Two very strong and exprienced teams will be in chrage of the new GT3 racers from quattro GmbH. Audi Sport Team Phoenix who are the reinging champions and Audi Sport Team WRT from Belgian with a two-car effort each.

Audi race experience who are familiar with the Nürburgring endurance event will field a pair of R8 LMS ultra cars. Twin Busch Motorsport will enter a single Audi, the team is one of the regular teams in the VLN Endurance Championship.

The Audi R8 LMS cars in 2015 Nürburgring 24 Hours:

Audi Sport Team Phoenix - #1 Audi R8 LMS - Haase / Mamerow / Rast / Winkelhock
Audi Sport Team Phoenix - #4 Audi R8 LMS - Basseng / Fässler / Rockenfeller / Stippler
Audi Sport Team WRT - #28 Audi R8 LMS - Mies / Sandström / Mueller / Vanthoor
Audi Sport Team WRT - #29 Audi R8 LMS - Thiim / Joens / Kaffer / Vanthoor
Audi race experience - #14 Audi R8 LMS ultra - Mayr-Melnhof / Salmon / Ohlsson / Saurenmann
Audi race experience - #15 Audi R8 LMS ultra - Yoong / Cheng / Lee / Thong
Twin Busch Motorsport - #16 Audi R8 LMS ultra - Busch / Busch

Photo credit: Audi Media

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

World RX: Anton Marklund eager to shine with EKS Audi in 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship

FIA World Rallycross Championship Press Release

One of the surprise driver moves of the off-season was announced earlier this year, with Anton Marklund moving away from his family team Marklund Motorsport to Mattias Ekstrom's EKS squad to drive an Audi S1 Quattro.

Having spent time with his new team, Marklund is confident that he is more prepared than ever and is targeting wins in the 2015 FIA World Rallycross Championship.

"I've been spending a lot of time with the team over the last few months and they're really professional. I feel really comfortable in their environment and that makes me confident for the season. Last year I was making sure that Marklund Motorsport as a team were prepared for the season and I forgot a little bit about myself; that I was in the right shape and I had done my homework about the tracks and everything else you need to do as a driver. This year I haven't had to put any focus at all on the organisational side of the team, just 100% on myself as a driver.”

In being a teammate to double DTM Champion and World RX event winner Ekstrom, Marklund feels the pressure is off his shoulders, but thinks both he and Ekstrom can be on the podium straight away from round one in Portugal this weekend. "I think pretty much all the spectators, media and people in the sport think that I am the underdog. I'm young and still quiet inexperienced, especially when you compare me to Mattias. But, I have the capacity to score wins. Portugal is a bit of a tricky track, with big kerbs and a tough first corner, but I think together with Mattias, we have the possibility to score podium finishes from the first events, starting in Portugal.

"A podium will be nice, but I'm aiming for the top step, that's my target."

Photo credit: EKS