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Istanbul, November 13, 2005

The Audi R8 has claimed second place and thus another podium result on its last competitive race in Europe. Allan McNish and Stéphane Ortelli brought the Audi PlayStation Team Oreca R8 home 69-seconds behind the winning Pescarolo prototype in the fifth and final round of the Le Mans Endurance Series (LMES) at Istanbul Park (Turkey). The whole 6-hours were run in wet, but ever-changing conditions. One moment the track was almost flooded, causing the cars to aquaplane, later the track was drying but still damp. McNish/Ortelli started from fourth position on the grid after a dry qualifying session. In the race they were able to fight for the lead which changed several times. At the penultimate pit-stop, the ORECA team decided to save time and not change tyres. But with the rain easing the Audi, running on worn "wet” tyres on a drying track, was powerless to prevent the Pescarolo, utilising its fresher "rubber” to the full, from re-taking the lead with one hour to go.

The LMES finale brought the curtain down on the Audi R8’s European race activity. New technical regulations come into force for the Le Mans 24 Hours and the Le Mans Series in 2006. Since making its race debut in 2000, the Audi R8 has scored 61 outright race victories from 77 races – including five Le Mans 24 Hour victories. Despite power and weight restrictions being imposed on the Audi R8 in the 2005 LMES season, McNish/Ortelli were able to score one victory and two second places from three races.

The podium at Istanbul
Audi R8 #4 (Audi PlayStation Team ORECA), Allan McNish

Istanbul (TR), 13 November, Le Mans Endurance Series (LMES) round 5

1 Emmanuel Collard/Jean-Christophe Boullion

(Pescarolo) 173 laps

2 Allan McNish/Stéphane Ortelli

(Audi R8) + 1m 9.875s

3 Nicolas Minassian/Jean-Denis Deletraz/Jamie Campbell-Walter

(DBA-Judd) + 2 laps

4 Hayanari Shimoda/Tom Chilton/Casper Elgaard

(Zytek) + 2 laps

5 Gregor Fisken/Sam Hancock/Jason Tahincioglu

(Zytek) - 2 laps

Final positions after 5 rounds

1 Collard/Boullion

34 points

2 Shimoda


3 McNish/Ortelli


4 Short/Ickx


5 Minassian/Campbell-Walter