Steane Klose | Mar 23, 2009

Allan McNish, Dindo Capello and Tom Kristensen have walked away from the 57th 12 Hours of Sebring with the gold trophy - the all-new Audi R15 TDI's first competition victory.

The R15 now joins the R8 and R10 in having won its debut race.

After qualifying second the #2 Audi R15 TDI battled furiously with one of Peugeot's 908 HDi FAP cars, with the lead changing 23 times throughout the race. A nail-biter? You betcha.

audi_r15_sebring_winners_podium

However, with just 42 minutes remaining the leading Peugeot 908 driven by Franck Montagny pitted for fuel, giving McNish's R15 a crucial advantage.

A series of increasingly faster laps gave McNish a large enough buffer to pit for fuel - with only 14 minutes to go - without relinquishing the lead.

When the R15 appeared from pit lane, the Peugeot 908 was rounding the back straight. A mere 22.79 seconds separated the two as the chequered flag fell.

audi_r15_sebring_win

Luckily for Audi, there were no yellow flags during the penultimate portions of the race - a situation that would have changed the outcome considerably.

With first and second place wrapped up, it was Audi's #1 R15 TDI that rounded out the top 3. Despite qualifying first, Acura's ARX-02b cars failed to make the podium.

It's an auspicious debut for Audi's latest oil-fed prototype racer, and with Sebring being the chief shakedown round ahead of Le Mans we're sure we'll be hearing of more R15 triumphs in the near future.

For a complete rundown of the race results hit the press release below.

57th Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring presented by Fresh from Florida

Sebring International Raceway, Sebring, Fla.

Saturday's results

1. (2) Allan McNish, Scotland; Rinaldo Capello, Italy; Tom Kristensen, Denmark; Audi R15 TDI (1, P1), 383.

2. (5) Franck Montagny, Brignoles France; Sebastien Bourdais, France; Stephane Sarrazin, France; Peugeot 908 HDI FAP (2, P1), 383.

3. (4) Mike Rockenfeller, Germany; Marco Werner, Germany; Lucas Luhr, Germany; Audi R15 TDI (3, P1), 381.

4. (7) Luis Diaz, Mexico; Adrian Fernandez, Mexico; Acura ARX-01B (1, P2), 360.

5. (3) Pedro Lamy, Lisbon Portugal; Christian Klien, Austria; Nicolas Minassian, England; Peugeot 908 HDI FAP (4, P1), 356.

6. (12) Jan Magnussen, Denmark; Antonio Garcia, Spain; Johnny O'Connell, Flowery Branch, GA; Corvette C6.R (1, GT1), 349.

7. (11) Oliver Gavin, England; Olivier Beretta, Monaco; Marcel Fässler, Switzerland; Corvette C6.R (2, GT1), 348.

8. (27) Mika Salo, Finland; Jaime Melo, Brazil; Pierre Kaffer, Germany; Ferrari F430 GT (1, GT2), 332.

9. (15) Gianmaria Bruni, Italy; Mathias Russo, Argentina; Luis Companc, Argentina; Ferrari 430 GT (2, GT2), 330.

10. (17) Dominik Farnbacher, Germany; Ian James, England; Panoz Esperante GTLM Ford (3, GT2), 329.

11. (14) Jörg Bergmeister, Germany; Patrick Long, Oak Park, CA; Marc Lieb, Germany; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (4, GT2), 326.

12. (24) Seth Neiman, Burlingame, CA; Johannes van Overbeek, San Francisco, CA; Darren Law, Phoenix, AZ; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (5, GT2), 326.

13. (23) Nic Jonsson, Sweden; Eric van de Poele, Belgium; Tracy Krohn, Houston, TX; Ferrari F430 GT (6, GT2), 325.

14. (16) David Murry, Cumming, GA; Andrea Robertson, Ray, MI; David Robertson, Ray, MI; Doran Ford GT MK 7 (7, GT2), 303.

15. (6) David Brabham, Australia; Scott Sharp, Jupiter, FL; Dario Franchitti, Scotland; Acura ARX-02a (5, P1), 302, Drive line.

16. (13) Dirk Werner, Germany; Richard Lietz, Austria; Wolf Henzler, Germany; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (8, GT2), 274.

17. (19) Joel Feinberg, Ft. Lauderdale, FL; Chris Hall, Daytona, FL; Ritchie Holt, Davie, FL; Dodge Viper Comp Coupe (9, GT2), 251, Clutch.

18. (1) Gil de Ferran, Brazil; Simon Pagenaud, France; Scott Dixon, New Zealand; Acura ARX-02a (6, P1), 246, Mechanical.

19. (20) Robert Bell, UK; Paul Drayson, London, UK; Jonny Cocker, UK; Aston Martin Vantage GT2 (10, GT2), 204, Engine.

20. (9) Chris McMurry, Phoenix, AZ; Tony Burgess, Canada; Bryan Willman, Kirkland, WA; Lola B06/10 AER (7, P1), 151, Electrical.

21. (10) Butch Leitzinger, State College, PA; Marino Franchitti, Scotland; Ben Devlin, England; Lola B09 86 Mazda (2, P2), 149, Mechanical.

22. (26) Dirk Müller, Germany; Tom Milner, Leesburg, VA; BMW E92 M3 (11, GT2), 140.

23. (8) Chris Dyson, Pleasant Valley, NY; Guy Smith, England; Andy Lally, New York, NY; Lola B09 86 Mazda (3, P2), 127, Mechanical.

24. (22) Lou Gigliotti, Dallas, TX; Eric Curran, Easthampton, MA; Lucas Molo, Brazil; Chevrolet Riley Corvette C6 (12, GT2), 89, Mechanical.

25. (25) Clint Field, Dublin, OH; Chapman Ducote, Miami, FL; Jon Field, Dublin, OH; Lola B06/10 AER (8, P1), 77.

26. (18) Bill Auberlen, Hermosa Beach, CA; Joey Hand, Sacramento, CA; BMW E92 M3 (13, GT2), 27, Mechanical.

27. (21) Nicky Pastorelli, Netherlands; Hans Stuck, Germany; Johannes Stuck, Austria; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (14, GT2), 0, Withdrawn.

28. (28) Richard Westbrook, England; Marc Basseng, Germany; Lance David, Germany; Porsche 911 GT3 RSR (15, GT2), 0, Withdrawn.

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