Report: Joest overpowers Champion team

After a battle of titanic proportions with the longtime leading Champion Audi squad, the experience of the works Team Joest Audi outfit showed through on Saturday as the team won the Sebring 12 Hours for the fourth consecutive year

Report: Joest overpowers Champion team

Drivers Frank Biela, Marco Werner and Philipp Peter steered the Audi R8 to a 13.493sec victory over the ADT Champion Racing Audi R8. The Champion car, driven by Emanuele Pirro, Stefan Johansson and JJ Lehto, led most of the race before the Joest team asserted itself in the last two hours.

The win was Biela's second in the Sebring event and his 10th in the American Le Mans Series, while his co-drivers were winning for the first time in the series.

The Bentley squad finished third and fourth after being forced to start from the back after a technical infringement in qualifying. The car of Johnny Herbert, David Brabham and Mark Blundell pipped the sister car of Tom Kristensen, Rinaldo Capello and Guy Smith by a lap, although they lagged over four laps behind the tussling lead Audis.

The Dyson Racing Lola EX257-MG survived a race of attrition to win the LMP 675 class for smaller prototypes, the first win in ALMS competition for the team. Didier de Radigues, Chris Dyson and Chad Block drove the car. Finishing second in class was the Intersport Lola-MG of Jon Field, Duncan Dayton and Michael Durand.

Winning the GTS class for the second straight year was the factory Corvette team. Ron Fellows, Johnny O'Connell and Franck Freon drove the Chevrolet Corvette C5-R to a 16-lap win over the Veloqx Prodrive Ferrari 550 Maranello of Anthony Davidson, Kelvin Burt and Darren Turner.

Lucas Luhr won the GT class for the fourth straight year, the third consecutive time with co-driver Sascha Maassen. The Alex Job Racing Porsche 911 GT3 RS finished one lap ahead of the Petersen Motorsports Porsche of autosport.com columnist Johnny Mowlem, Nic Jonsson and Craig Stanton.


1 Biela, Werner, Peter Joest Audi R8 (P900), 367 laps
2 Pirro, Lehto, Johansson, Champion Audi R8 (P900), + 13.493sec
3 Herbert, Brabham, Blundell Bentley Speed 8 (P900), 363
4 Kristensen, Capello, Smith, Bentley Speed 8 (P900), 362
5 Beretta, Jeannette, Papis JML Panoz LMP01-EPP (P900), 352
6 Salo, Kane, McCarthy Audi Sport UK Audi R8 (P900), 351
7 Theys, van de Poele, Lienhard Sr Dallara-MG (P900), 336
8 Fellows, O'Connell, Freon Chevrolet C5-R Corvette (GTS), 332
9 Maxwell, Leuenberger, Graham Panoz LMP01-EPP (P900), 324
10 Maassen, Luhr Alex Job Racing Porsche 911 GT3 RS (GT), 320


11 Mowlem, Jonsson, Stanton Petersen Porsche 911 GT3 RS (GT), 319
13 Turner, Burt, Davidson Ferrari 550 Maranello (GTS), 316
16 Andrews, Keen, Oberto Lola B2K/10-MG (P900), 307
18 De Radigues, Dyson, Block Lola EX257-AER MG (P675), 306
20 Barff, Stanton, May Racesport TVR (GT), 297
RTD Gavin, Collins, Pilgrim Chevrolet C5-R Corvette (GTS), 283, gearbox
RTD Enge, Kox, Davies Ferrari 550 Maranello (GTS), 245, clutch
RTD Franchitti, McGarrity, Bennett Ferrari 360 Modena (GT), 243, accident
RTD Erdos, Chaves, Pickering Saleen S7R (GTS), 97, gearbox
RTD Liddell, Masarati, Warnock PK Porsche 911 GT3 RS (GT), 74, engine
RTD Naspetti, Schiattarella, Cecotto Ferrari 550 Maranello (GTS), 59, engine
RTD Weaver, Leitzinger, Wallace Lola EX257-AER MG (P675), 39, steering
RTD Campbell-Walter, McKellar Jr Lister Storm LMP (P900), 10, transmission

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