A strong line-up of Audi factory-supported and customer teams will descend on Malaysia this week for the renowned Motul Sepang 12 Hours endurance race, the finale of the inaugural Intercontinental GT Challenge (IGTC). With nine drivers and three Audi R8 LMS race cars on the track, the brand with four rings is primed for a strong weekend of competition at the Sepang International Circuit between December 9 and 11.
The Audi R8 LMS stole the show in Sepang last year, with a stunning 1-2-3 victory. Since then, the Formula 1 circuit has been resurfaced, resulting in an even racier tarmac shown in Rounds 5 and 6 of the Audi R8 LMS Cup in Sepang earlier this year.
Two teams from Audi Sport Team Phoenix will look to maintain last year’s strong Audi performance in the Sepang endurance race. Laurens Vanthoor will be joined in the No. 15 Audi R8 LMS by Christopher Haase of Germany and Robin Frijns of the Netherlands. The all-German team of Pierre Kaffer, Rene Rast and Markus Winkelhock will be in command of the No. 16 Audi car.
Vanthoor, who just won the FIA GT World Cup in Macau last month and topped the podium at last year’s Sepang 12 Hours, will be looking to finish an already impressive year on a high. Another victory would secure the Audi driver the IGTC drivers’ classification title in the global GT series’ debut season. Audi enters the weekend with a chance of glory in the IGTC manufacturers’ class too. The marque is currently third but only six points from first place.
In pursuit of the GTC class podium will be Thai team, B-Quik Racing, with Daniel Bilski joined behind the wheel by Dutch duo, Henk Kiks and Peter Kox. Bilski is the reigning Audi R8 LMS Cup Masters Cup champion and also won the GT3 sprint series’ Am Cup title in 2015.
The endurance event in Malaysia brings an impressive season for Audi in Asia to a close. The busy year included a successful fifth season of the Audi R8 LMS Cup. The Asian GT3 sprint series climaxed in dramatic circumstances at the Shanghai season finale in November as Alex Yoong pipped Alessio Picariello to the overall championship title by a single point. The brand also celebrated an Am-Cup championship win in GT Asia Series for Audi Sport customer racing Asia’s Young Driver Development Programme graduate Shaun Thong. Audi then recorded driver and manufacturer triumphs at the GT World Cup in Macau.
Qualifying for the Sepang 12 Hours will take place on Friday, December 9 at 15:00, with a Shootout for the top 15 cars taking place shortly thereafter at 16:30. The official race will begin at 12:00 on Saturday, December 10, culminating at 00:00 on Sunday, December 11 (all times UTC+8).
2016 Motul Sepang 12 Hours
Audi entrants – Provisional entry list
15/Haase/Frijns/Vanthoor/Audi Sport Team Phoenix
16/Kaffer/Rast/Winkelhock/Audi Sport Team Phoenix