The Audi R8 was the first in a line of world-beating sports-prototype cars from the Ingolstadt marque which would dominate Le Mans and would see Audi remain at the forefront of international sports-car racing for over 15 years.
If such an award could go to a machine, Audi ‘R8-405’ – the car featuring in this book – was surely the ‘Man of the Match’ for the 2000 Le Mans 24 Hours. In the end it would finish second, behind one of its teammates which had a far less-troubled run, but it was not for want of trying by Allan McNish, his co-drivers Stéphane Ortelli and Laurent Aïello and their mechanics.
At Le Mans, ‘R8-405’ led the race for almost six hours, McNish setting fastest lap of the race in the morning, still chasing his teammates in the eventual winning sister car. ‘R8-405’ would race on in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS), winning twice in the hands of Frank Biela and Emanuele Pirro.
In 2001, ‘R8-405’ competed for a further year in the ALMS, albeit in private – Champion Racing – hands, with regular drivers including Andy Wallace and Johnny Herbert. Despite its tender years, it would later go on to qualify as an historic car, and a host of new opportunities opened up as it became one of the most raced of all the R8s.
Today, the Audi R8 series (of which ‘R8-405’ was one of the first) is revered as one of the most successful endurance-racing car designs of all time, with five Le Mans victories to its name.
This lavishly produced book with 320 pages covering ‘R8-405’s racing career in-depth, is essential reading for all motorsport enthusiasts and devotees of the Audi marque.
Fascinating and authoritative text from award-winning author Ian Wagstaff and published by Porter Press International is the fifteenth book in the acclaimed, award-winning Great Cars series. This book is extensively illustrated with over 350 images, including stunning period photography of the car in action during its two seasons of frontline competition, and a gallery of studio photographs depicting the car today.
The book contains race-by-race coverage of R8-405’s two frontline seasons, as both a ‘works’ car in 2000, and as a privateer entry for Champion Racing in 2001 and includes interviews with the car’s leading drivers, including Allan McNish, Andy Wallace and Emanuele Pirro.
Chapters documenting Audi’s motorsport heritage, the development of the R8, the car’s starring role at Le Mans in 2000, the car’s 2000 and 2001 American Le Mans Series seasons, biographies of the car’s drivers, Audi’s post-R8 endurance-racing story, and R8-405’s subsequent career as a ‘modern historic’ racer.
The book has a retail price of £69.00