Audi to appeal WEC exclusion
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.”