Buffalo Grove, IL (January 20, 2014) – Following a successful first season with the Audi R8 LMS in 2013, Fall-Line Motorsports enters their first full-season with the car in 2014 with great expectations. This program was a new addition to the Fall-Line family in 2013 and has made great strides since its inception midway through the season. This year the team will run the full year with Charlie Putman and Charles Espenlaub along with Oliver Jarvis and James Walker rounding out the lineup for the Rolex 24 at Daytona. The #46 Fall-Line Motorsports Audi R8 LMS will compete in the inaugural season of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship as part of Audi Sport customer racing in the GTD category which is one of the most competitive in the series.
The 2013 Rolex 24 at Daytona was won by an Audi R8 GRAND-AM in only the second year attempting the race so the car is a proven winner. With the combination of such a powerful, reliable race car and an impressive driver lineup, the Fall-Line Audi R8 LMS has a solid chance to take home the win.
James Walker: “It was great to meet all the Fall-Line crew at the test. The team has a great atmosphere, which gives me a lot of confidence ahead for the 24. The Audi R8 LMS seems to be a great package. After their success in last year’s race, I’m sure Audi is up for the fight again. The mixed conditions during the test enabled us to get an idea of what we can expect during the night phase of the race. As ever, having a car balance that copes with all eventualities is going to be the key to victory. I think we have a great driver lineup and tons of experience within the team. I can’t wait to get back to Daytona for the race.”
Oliver Jarvis: “It’s great to be heading back to Daytona to try and repeat the win we achieved last year. I absolutely loved taking part in the event so I was thrilled to be asked to return again this year. It will be quite different this year with the race being run as part of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship after the merger of Grand Am and ALMS. This means the race will be run to a different set of regulations compared to last year. The most significant being that each car must run a number of amateur drivers. For this reason I will not be partnering with the same drivers I was able to win the race with last year. With this rule, the level of amateur drivers in each car could have a significant outcome on the result. After the test, “The Roar,” I feel confident that in Fall-Line I have a very strong team and some very good teammates. The level of competition this year is extremely high and there are at least 15 cars in the GTD class that are capable of fighting for the win. The key will be to stay out of trouble and be on the lead lap for the last 4 hours where it becomes a sprint to the finish. As always in 24hr races anything can happen and with the current weather in Florida there is no promise of sunshine so rain could certainly have a big impact on the race.”
Charlie Putman: “We continue to make good headway on the development of the Fall-Line Audi R8 LMS. Every time we test it, the car gets better and better. The guys are still working on even better drivability, which will serve us very well, particularly in the longer endurance races that kick off with the Daytona 24. Charles and I were happy to meet Oliver (Jarvis) and James (Walker) and welcome them into the driving team. They are great guys and very, very talented drivers so Fall-Line has now completed a great driver lineup. Of course when you look around the paddock at Daytona, you see a “who’s who” of drivers and teams so it isn’t going to be a cakewalk; but we have the car, the drivers, and the crew to be a real factor when the green flag waves.”
Charles Espenlaub: “I’m really excited to be back racing with Charlie (Putman) again at Fall-Line. We have shared many cars and raced in many different series as a team and we have had great success together. The Audi R8 LMS is a fantastic machine to drive and the difference in the car from last year when we first got it is enormous. We have made remarkable improvements to the performance of the car and as drivers we have learned a lot as well. I think we have one of the most talented driver lineups in the paddock and a real chance to win!”
Michael Harvey, Fall-Line Motorsports Team Manager: “We at Fall-Line Motorsports are very proud to of assembled such a talented group of people both in the car and in the pits. With so much experience in 24 hour events we are very excited for the green flag. Along with our partners at Audi Sport customer racing we are firmly eying a repeat of last year’s success although we remain very grounded as we approach a race that is 24 hours of unpredictability. The key will be to stick to our plan, make no mistakes, tick off laps and stay on the lead lap so we can race at the end. My guys have worked tirelessly over the past few months in preparation for not only this event but the inaugural 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship and we feel ready to compete. I would like to thank both Oliver and James for becoming a part of Fall-Line Motorsports program, they are both amazing talents.”
Photo credit: Audi of America, Inc / Fall-Line Motorsports