“After the successful era of customer racing programs, we are delighted to be taking the next step,” says Klaus Demel, Head of Audi driving experience. “Promoting young talent is now at the heart of our motorsport activities. Sepp Haider and his team of instructors will mentor the young drivers to prepare them for a professional career.” In addition to the 16-year-old Hungarian Vivien Keszthelyi, who has been promoted since 2016, 24-year-old Mikaela Åhlin-Kottulinsky from Sweden, 16-year-old Ricardo Feller from Switzerland and Austrian 19-year-old Chris Höher are also very pleased with the promotion. 28-year-old German racing driver Elia Erhart completes the squad, bringing his experience that will certainly be of benefit to the young drivers.
More than 1,000 customers have got to know the Audi R8 LMS since 2010 in the former Audi race experience – through individual training events and experiences, as well as through customer motorsport at the Nürburgring. In 2017, a new chapter begins, which will be defined by the promotion of young talent: the Audi Sport racing academy, launched last year, will select international aspirants with the aim of introducing them to professional motorsport. The program intends to develop the participants’ driving skills and optimize their physical and mental fitness. In addition, it will provide an introduction to racing technology and familiarize them with dealing with sponsors and the media. The training courses will take place on the premises of Audi Neuburg. They can eventually put their learned knowledge into practice by racing in the Audi TT cup and the Audi R8 LMS. Marc Klöppel and Gerd Lambert’s TKL Motorsport team, which has previously prepared and used the Audi race experience GT3 cars, will now enter two Audi R8 LMS cars from the Audi Sport racing academy in the ADAC GT Masters as well.