Audi to ap­peal WEC ex­clu­sion

Motor Sport News - - Headline News - By Edd Straw Photos: LAT, Jakob Ebrey

Audi has ap­pealed against its dis­qual­i­fi­ca­tion from vic­tory last Sun­day’s World En­durance Cham­pi­onship opener at Sil­ver­stone.

An­dre Lot­terer, Benoit Tre­luyer and Mar­cel Fassler won the race on the road in the #7 Audi, but the car was ex­cluded four hours af­ter the race when the un­der­floor plank wear was found to be greater than the 5mm al­lowed un­der ar­ti­cle 3.5.6 of the LMP1 tech­ni­cal reg­u­la­tions.

Audi at­tempted to ex­plain the ex­ces­sive wear in the stew­ards’ hear­ing, but this was re­jected by the stew­ards. It is likely to form the ba­sis of the ap­peal, the date for which has yet to be fi­nalised.

The ex­clu­sion handed vic­tory to the #2 Porsche driven by Ro­main Du­mas, Neel Jani and Marc Lieb, which had fin­ished 46 sec­onds be­hind.

Audi had been en­cour­aged by the per­for­mance of its new R18 e-tron qu­at­tro on its de­but af­ter a test pro­gramme blighted by re­li­a­bil­ity prob­lems. The car took Audi’s first pole po­si­tion since 2013 in qual­i­fy­ing, and was able to beat the Porsche in a straight fight – although the #1 Porsche had been quicker prior to its re­tire­ment.

“It’s amaz­ing, and a great re­lief for the whole team,” said Lot­terer prior to the car’s ex­clu­sion. “We had some luck, the #1 Porsche had an ac­ci­dent and it was quite quick. Our car had zero is­sues and was great to drive so it is a fan­tas­tic re­ward for the Audi Sport crew that worked so hard over the win­ter to de­velop this car. It was not easy – our me­chan­ics have barely had any sleep.”

Audi took pole but was de­nied vic­tory

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