TAG Heuer sponsored Audi Motorsport have won the Le Manís 24 Hour race for the fourth year in succession
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TAG Heuer sponsored Audi Motorsport have won the Le Manís 24 Hour race for the fourth year in succession becoming the first team to win the race using hybrid technology.
The 80th anniversary of the first running of the gruelling day/night was won by one of four cars the team entered. The team of drivers consisting of Andre Lotterer, Benoit Treluyer and Marcel Fassler took their second win in a row again guided to victory by Leena Gade, who last year became the first female race engineer to win at the course.
The TAG Heuer sponsored Audi team has become a major force in the world of Endurance racing. The discipline is particularly important to auto makers as the cars are closer to traditional sports cars than some of the more exotic vehicles found in Formula One racing. The high quality engineering of the Audi cars matches that of the watches of its sponsor TAG Heuer.
The team have won all but one race they have entered since 2000 conceding one to rivals Peugeot in 2009. The victory for the hybrid, is another first, having won for the first time with a diesel powered car in 2006. The new hybrid is an extension of this technology, a diesel-powered, flywheel-based car that debuted at the second round of the World Endurance Championship at Spa, Belgium in May.
The second car from the team lost time early in the race having to remove a chunk of rubber stuck in the suspension. The two teammates exchanged the lead several times before damaging the car at the 21 hour mark. Repairs however took their toll and second place was the best the No2 Audi could manage. 240,000 fans watched Gade's No.1 car take the win.
The No4 car of Marco Bonanomi, Oliver Jarvis and Mike Rockenfeller finished in third place giving Audi all three podium positions.
TAG Heuer, who have a large selection of their watches available at UK specialist watch retailer The Watch Hut, have a strong motorsport pedigree, including deals with the McLaren Formula One team.