Audi luxury unit of Volkswagen and recipient of quality VW disc is joining two city races in one week — the American Le Mans Series in Long Beach California and Houston Texas. These two races will put the undefeated Audi R10 TDI once again to the test.
It can be remembered that the Audi R10 TDI has won a one-two victory in St. Louis. Petersburg Florida which simply shows that the revolutionary diesel-powered sportscar is also capable of winning on a street course. The circuits in Long Beach and Houston however have different hits compared to the tracks on St. Louis. Petersburg which means that the Audi Sport North America team is going to face additional challenges and it's going to be big.
And speaking of challenges, the drivers as well as the technical crews need to master a particularly tough task in Long Beach and they have to do than before the qualifying race which gives the team as little as 45 minutes of practice to familiarize themselves with the new circuit. The race will only last for 1:40 hours making it as the shortest race in the history of the American Le Mans Series.
A week after the Audi Sport North America team will head to compete in the city circuit in Houston. Dindo Capello and Allan McNish are already familiar with the city circuit in Houston since this is where they have earned their victory last year using the Audi R8. However for Emanuele Pirro and Marco Werner the Houston circuit is a new territory. It is also expected that the Audi team will experience some problems during the race since the Houston circuit is considered to be the slowest one on the 2007 American Le Mans Series schedule with an extremely bumpy surface.
After the one-two victory that the Audi team has achieved in St. Louis, Petersburg there was very little time for the team to take a break. As the drivers flew back to Europe for some testing in France for the 24 Hours of Le Mans scheduled on June 16 to 17, the Dave Maraj's Team Audi Sport North America on the other hand has three days remaining to prepare the two R10 TDI sports prototypes for the next race. And then as early as Thursday the trucks left the team's base in Pompano Beach in Florida to travel the 2,700 mile distance across the United States to the West Coast.
It is the first time for Long Beach to host the American Le Mans Series. And for the Audi Sport team, this Houston race marks the return to a special venue. It should be noted that in the year 1988 Audi contested its debut race with the 200 quattro TRANSAm after changing from rallying to circuit racing which happened on the street course near Los Angeles. And during that time, Audi caused a big sensation with its Quattro drive and just like its TDI powered sportscar that is making headlines in the United States.