Recent Posts

Dream debut for HCB-Rutronik Racing

Dream debut for HCB-Rutronik Racing

Last weekend, the opening event of the ADAC GT Masters season took place in Oschersleben. In changeable weather, with a record fan attendance, HCB-Rutronik Racing made its race debut in the series and impressed with a podium finish in the first race. South African Kelvin […]

Blog Post: March & April Update

Blog Post: March & April Update

It’s been a pretty busy couple of weeks, so here’s a quick update on what’s been happening. My ADAC GT Masters program was announced, where I will be driving for HCB-Rutronik Racing alongside a good friend and someone I rate very highly, Patric Niederhauser. It’s […]

Van Der Linde Going for Hat Trick in Third Intercontinental GT Challenge California 8 Hours

Van Der Linde Going for Hat Trick in Third Intercontinental GT Challenge California 8 Hours

Audi Sport customer racing holds a record in the Intercontinental GT Challenge, the world’s most prestigious GT3 racing series. The Audi R8 LMS has been unbeaten to date in the California 8 Hours in the United States. Following two straight victories, Audi is now aiming to continue its string of success at Laguna Seca on March 30 when the new evolution of the Audi R8 LMS will compete in this racing series for the first time.

Never before has the competition been as fierce as this season: Eight automobile marques have submitted entries for the 2019 Intercontinental GT Challenge. “It’s a challenge we’re happy to take on as the title defenders in the manufacturers’ classification, but we’ve also seen how difficult it is this year,” says Chris Reinke, Head of Audi Sport customer racing. At the season opener at Bathurst, Australia, in early February, the teams and drivers from Audi Sport suffered several setbacks, scoring only three points. Consequently, the upcoming event now marks the beginning of a fightback around the globe. One endurance race each in America, Europe, Asia and Africa completes the calendar of the series until November.

Audi has special memories of the upcoming California 8 Hours on the race track at Laguna Seca. The roller coaster circuit some 200 kilometers south of San Francisco combines diverse cornering radii on a length of only 3.6 kilometers and significant elevation changes. The Corkscrew corner with its heavily dropping left-right section is unique in the world and popular with all race drivers.

Audi R8 LMS #29 (Audi Sport Team Land), Kelvin van der Linde/Christopher Mies/Markus Winkelhock

On this race track, the Audi R8 and Audi R10 TDI Le Mans prototypes scored a total of eight victories in the former American Le Mans Series for sports cars in North America between 2000 and 2008. Pierre Kaffer/Kelvin van der Linde/Markus Winkelhock decided the inaugural race of the California 8 Hours in 2017 in their favor with Audi. Winkelhock won the drivers’ classification of this series as well, and Audi the manufacturers’ classification. A year later, the Audi R8 LMS was again unbeatable: Kelvin van der Linde together with Christopher Haase and Christopher Mies after eight thrilling hours of racing celebrated victory ahead of Robin Frijns/Dries Vanthoor/Markus Winkelhock in another Audi R8 LMS last October.

This year, six Audi Sport drivers will be on the grid. Christopher Haase will be racing with Dries Vanthoor and Frédéric Vervisch for Audi Sport Team WRT. Audi Sport Team Land that was victorious last year will again have Kelvin van der Linde and Christopher Mies on board. Markus Winkelhock completes this driver lineup.

Three sessions and a pole shootout qualifying for the top 15 grid positions on Friday, March 29, will be followed by the race on Saturday. The race is scheduled to start at 8.30 AM local time (CET – 8 hours).

Busy January. Dubai, Daytona and Bathurst

Busy January. Dubai, Daytona and Bathurst

January has been a busy month so far for Kelvin, having been contracted for the 24H of Dubai, 24H of Daytona and the Bathurst 12 Hour.  The new season already got going very early this year with the first test before the 24H of Daytona […]

Win in Laguna Seca and third manufacturers’ title for Audi

Win in Laguna Seca and third manufacturers’ title for Audi

Spectacular finale at the fourth and final round of the Intercontinental GT Challenge (IGTC): At Laguna Seca/USA, Audi Sport customer racing turned a nine-point deficit into an 11-point advantage to secure the title in the manufacturers’ classification for the third consecutive time. This was thanks […]

Superb Podium Finish at the Suzuka 10 Hours

Superb Podium Finish at the Suzuka 10 Hours

The Audi Sport Team Absolute Racing celebrated a superb podium in the Suzuka 10 Hours this passed weekend. Audi Sport drivers Christopher Haase/Kelvin van der Linde/Markus Winkelhock brought their #6 Audi R8 LMS home in third place after the ten hour-long race.

The 47th running of the Suzuka Summer Endurance Race in Japan was an incredibly tough race and attracted a stellar entry of GT3 cars for round three of the Intercontinental GT Challenge.

The race build-up and qualifying went very well and both Absolute Racing-run cars showed speed. Winkelhock was charged with going for the Pole Shoot-out qualifying lap on Saturday and posted the eleventh fastest time.

With an outside temperature well above 30 degrees Celsius, the Suzuka 10 Hours proved to be a tough test for man and machine. Taking up the race from eleventh on the grid, Haase/van der Linde/Winkelhock fought their way up to position three as the best driver trio in an Audi R8 LMS, despite being handed a drive-through penalty in the second hour of the race. At the flag, the #6 Audi Sport Team Absolute Racing trio were only 1.2 seconds shy of second place.

“It was a very memorable weekend in Japan. the local support was amazing to see and ofcourse to drive at such an iconic racetrack was one of my season highlights. I want to thank the team for an extremely professional approach to their first ever Factory supported race, they really deserved this result!”

Podium for the VDL Bros in the 24H of Spa!

Podium for the VDL Bros in the 24H of Spa!

Audi Sport customer racing took third place on the podium in the overall classification in the 70th running of the Spa 24 Hours. The brothers Sheldon and Kelvin van der Linde finished third together with Jeffrey Schmidt. A change to the performance categorization on race […]

Disappointment for Audi in Nürburgring 24 Hours

Disappointment for Audi in Nürburgring 24 Hours

In the 46th running of the Nürburgring 24 Hours, the Eifel region revealed itself at its worst: Audi Sport customer racing had traveled to the world’s biggest automobile race as title defenders, but together with its customer teams suffered some bitter setbacks in the battle […]

Season Update. Win in Blancpain GT and Podiums in ADAC GT Masters.

Season Update. Win in Blancpain GT and Podiums in ADAC GT Masters.

The start to the 2018 has been a successful one for Kelvin van der Linde. Having secured his first podium of the year at the Brazilian Stock Car race in Sao Paulo, Kelvin has enjoyed a good start to his Blancpain GT and GT Masters campaigns.

Kelvin secured his first win of the season with team mate Steijn Schothorst in the first round of the Blancpain Sprint Series at Zolder, and currently leads that Championship with Attempto Racing.

Similarly, the ADAC GT Masters season kicked off well with a solid second place Finnish in Race 1 at Oschersleben. An unfortunate DNF after an off in Race 2 left Kelvin and his younger brother Sheldon in 3rd place in the overall standings after the race weekend.

The first round of the Blancpain Endurance Series kicked off this passed weekend, and once again, Kelvin, along with his team mates Steijn and Pieter Schothorst were in with a fighting chance of a podium finish until a pitstop mishap dropped the trio to P6 by the end of the race in an extremely competitive 54 car field filled with many factory supported “Full Pro” line-ups.

Kelvin and Steijn Schothorst currently sit in 4th position in the overall Blancpain GT Series Standings with only 6 points deficit to Series leader, Dries Vanthoor.

The next few weeks continue to be extremely busy, with a further 4 races taking place in succession.

Upcoming Races:

ADAC GT MASTERS, Most – 28-29.04

Blancpain Sprint Series, Brands Hatch – 5-6.05

24H Nurburgring – 12-13.05

Blancpain Endurance Series, Silverstone – 19-20.05

 

KELVIN TO DEFEND 2017 24H NURBURGRING TITLE

KELVIN TO DEFEND 2017 24H NURBURGRING TITLE

Audi Sport customer racing has set ambitious aims for the Nürburgring 24 Hours. From May 10 to 13, the Audi R8 LMS is supposed to battle for its fifth victory in the iconic endurance race. Audi Sport customer racing is supporting four official teams this […]