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Le Mans, May 4, 2003

A Florida-based auto racing team proudly and successfully flew the “Star & Stripes” in France today (Sun 4 May). Team ADT Champion Racing, of Pompano Beach, set the fifth fastest time in warm-up trials for the annual 24 Hours of Le Mans endurance sportscar race.

Emanuele Pirro swept its “customer” Audi R8 around the 8.62-mile circuit at an average speed of over 135mph in a time of 3min 39.077. 56-cars were “invited” to participate in two, four-hour test sessions held in sunny and warm weather conditions. Champion Racing, a regular competitor in the American Le Mans Series, was one of 15 American teams present.

Pirro will be partnered by JJ Lehto and Stefan Johansson in the actual round-the-clock race staged on 14-15 June. The fastest time was set by the Bentley of Tom Kristensen/Guy Smith/Rinaldo Capello.

24h Le Mans
:: Practice
:: Practice
:: Practice
:: Qualifying
:: Practice
:: The Race

JJ Lehto and Stefan Johansson during the driver change
Emanuele Pirro in the Audi R8 of the Team ADT Champion Racing
Stefan Johansson in the Audi R8 of the Team ADT Champion Racing

1 Capello/Kristensen/Smith

Bentley 3m 34.820s

2 Ara/Magnussen/Werner

Audi R8 3m 38.385s

3 Blundell/Brabham/Herbert

Bentley 3m 38.769s

4 Biela/Salo/McCarthy

Audi R8 3m 39.016s

5 Johansson/Lehto/Pirro

Audi R8 3m 39.077s

6 Bosch/Lammers/Wallace

Dome-Judd 3m 41.535s

7 Goossens/Matthews/Tinseau

Riley & Scott 3m 41.856s

8 Gabbiant/Gommendy/Ortitz

Dome-Judd 3m 42.185s

9 Ayari/Helary/Minassian

Courage-Peugeot 3m 42.485s

10 Cochet/Gregoire/Derichebourg

Courage-Judd 3m 42.535s

Stefan Johansson
“Mission accomplished! We had a very productive day, went through many evaluations concerning fuel and tires which should bode well for us in the race.”

JJ Lehto
“We followed a specific program that we needed to accomplish during the day. All the drivers are happy with our car. We can return in June with a very good car for the race.”

Emanuele Pirro
“I am quite happy. The track was never clear for us to set a really fast lap. Importantly, we have gathered important information for race.”