Using the race to test its new long-tailed version of its R18 e-tron quattro in preparation for Le Mans, Audi achieved a dominant one-two-three finish this weekend at round two of the World Endurance Championship in Spa, Belgium.
Using its hybrid technology, Audi beat its rivals from Toyota after the six-hour race.
On the way to their first WEC victory of the season, World Champions Marcel Fässler/André Lotterer/Benoît Treluyer finished 1min 05sec ahead of second place despite suffered misfortune at the beginning of the race. In the second hour, debris damaged a tire, forcing André Lotterer to stop early. From seventh place Tréluyer battled to recover and was running in front again just 74min later.
The winners of the previous race at Silverstone, Loïc Duval/Tom Kristensen/Allan McNish, finished second while taking an additional point for posting the best qualifying time.
The third car of Marc Gené/Lucas di Grassi/Oliver Jarvis was the experimental long-tail version, optimized for the upcoming Le Mans race. The lower downforce apparently didn't make its handling in the fast turns at Spa any easier, but it still managed a strong result.
The next stop for Audi will be Le Mans on June 9, when Audi Sport Team Joest will run in the official test day. On June 22 and 23, Audi will aim to achieve its twelfth victory at the classic endurance race.
Race results, WEC Spa 2013
1 Fässler/Lotterer/Tréluyer (Audi R18 e-tron quattro) 168 laps
2 Duval/Kristensen/McNish (Audi R18 e-tron quattro) + 1m 05.815s
3 Gené/di Grassi/Jarvis (Audi R18 e-tron quattro) + 1m 54.992s
4 Buemi/Davidson/Sarrazin (Toyota) - 1 lap
5 Heidfeld/Jani/Prost (Lola-Toyota) - 3 laps
6 Beche/Belicchi/Cheng (Lola-Toyota) - 3 laps
7 Kane/Leventis/Watts (HPD-Honda) - 7 laps
8 Kaffer/Perez Companc/Minassian (Oreca-Nissan) - 11 laps
9 Brundle/Heinemeier-Hansson/Pla (Morgan-Nissan) - 11 laps
10 Dolan/Luhr/Turvey (Zytek-Nissan) - 11 laps