Peugeot driver Franck Montagny has admitted his surprise at the pace of Audi's new R18 TDI during practice for the second round of the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup, the Spa 1000km.
The German manufacturer's cars set the pace in each of the day's sessions, while the highest-placed Peugeots were
"I was surprised," Montagny told AUTOSPORT. "It's strange because the car does not look fast. It looks fat, not like the Peugeot. It's as if we're racing in two different categories.
"The Audi looks more steady [in the fast corners] and it's maybe because they're using the tyres better [than we are].
"The problem we have today is making the parts of the car work together; getting the tyres, aero, engine all doing the right thing. Our sweet spot is very narrow."
Montagny confirmed that the 908 HDI was running with a Le Mans-style aerodynamic package, unlike in recent years at Spa. The low downforce could be a contributing factor in terms of making the car work on its rubber.
The quickest of the Peugeots in FP1 was that of Pedro Lamy/Sebastien Bourdais/Simon Pagenaud, 0.4s adrift of the leading Audi, while the same trio dropped back to 2.3s off the pace during the afternoon.