In its seventh season, the Audi R8 LMS Cup will become exclusively privateer. Underlining Audi Sport customer racing Asia’s commitment to offering its privateers an attractive, equitable environment for racing, the 2018 season will feature a mentoring programme and open data over a 10-race calendar that will take in some of the world’s most iconic events.
“Privateers are the backbone of customer racing”, said Martin Kuehl, Director of Audi Sport customer racing Asia. “In the 2018 edition of the Audi R8 LMS Cup, our customers will compete at the highest level of GT racing and develop their skills in a welcoming environment at some of the world’s most famous race events, including the previously-announced Adelaide 500 season-opener in Australia. At each of the Cup’s events, all drivers and guests will enjoy world-class hospitality and exciting brand experiences.”
The Cup’s new format sees a raft of new innovations. Professional Audi Sport star drivers will attend Cup races as dedicated mentors, setting practice lap times at every circuit – thus providing key benchmark data for the Cup’s privateers – and also offering expert coaching and support over each race weekend.
To further strengthen the Cup’s commitment to providing a level playing field for its competitors, the series will instigate an ‘open data’ policy for 2018. This regulation ensures that all data produced from practice, qualifying and race laps is available to all Cup drivers, offering a welcoming, mutually-beneficial racing environment for all and accelerating the opportunities for advancement amongst the privateer field.
The Audi R8 LMS Cup, the only brand series worldwide to feature full-spec GT3 cars, will also offer unique rewards to the best performers. The overall winner of the GT3 Cup will receive a “Cup edition” Audi R8 road car, while the best performer of specified Cup events will have the chance to join a special Audi R8 LMS Cup team for the 2019 Total 24 Hours of Spa endurance race. In the GT4 category – new for the 2018 season – the overall top three will receive parts vouchers starting from 50,000 Euros for the class winner.
Audi Sport customer racing Asia will again partner with long-term service team Absolute Racing for the 2018 season.
Alongside the Audi R8 LMS Cup, Audi Sport customer racing Asia will build on the growth of its motorsport platform in 2017 which saw more Audi entries in championships and races across the region than ever before. The German marque will work with regional teams to enter highly competitive professional driver pairings into Asia’s leading multi-brand championships in 2018.
The Audi R8 LMS Cup will begin its 2018 season at the Adelaide 500 in Australia on March 3-4. More calendar details and signature events will be announced soon.