GENNEP (January 19th, 2009) – The Dutch Audi CR-8 Team is quite happy with its performance in the fourth running of the TOYO TIRES 24H of Dubai. Although a technical problem prior to the race caused a considerably delay, the potential of the Audi CR-8 was clearly demonstrated during the race. One year earlier, the Audi CR-8 had made its competition debut in Dubai and this was the second time for the car to participate in a 24-hour race. The competition version of the Audi R8 sports car, largely developed in The Netherlands, was among the most spectacular cars in the field of 80 teams. In the event, Ivo Breukers, who initiated the Audi CR-8 project, shared driving duties with WTCC regulars Jaap van Lagen and Viktor Shapovalov.
Jaap van Lagen, who has a lot of experience with various race cars following his involvement in the World Touring Car Championship and the Porsche Supercup, was enthusiastic about his outing with the Audi CR-8: “I was able to drive the Audi in Dubai last year already, but compared to what we had one year ago, great steps have been made in the development of the car. It is becoming more and more of a genuine race car!” Ivo Breukers, who took the initiative to develop a competition version based on the Audi R8 in the autumn of 2007, said: “Last year, the race debut in Dubai came pretty soon; we hadn’t had a lot of time beforehand to develop the car well. Since then, we have been doing quite a lot of work together with some committed partners in order to bringing the car to a higher level, and we have succeeded in doing so.” Viktor Shapovalov showed himself impressed, too: “From our participation in the WTCC, I know what it is like to develop your own race car. In that respect, the team have done a very good job on the Audi CR-8.”
The AUdi CR-8 now has a Holinger six-speed gearbox, a Brembo competition brake system and a 120 litre fuel tank. The power output of the engine has been increased to 450 hp while the weight has been reduced to 1250 kg. Further improvements were carried out on the driveshafts and the cooling system. “Unfortunately, a technical problem occurred prior to the start of the race and the fuel tank had to be replaced as a result”, said Ivo Breukers. “That cost us quite some time, but once we were in the race, things were running trouble-free. Our fastest lap time in the race of 2.10.8 minutes clearly shows the potential there is in the car. That lap time was considerably faster than those of the teams that took the podium positions in our class…”
The Dutch Audi CR-8 Team currently has two competition cars available, one of which has been put up for sale. “We have several contacts with interested parties”, says Ivo Breukers. “In Dubai, several teams have again expressed their interest for our car.”