Sports, fun and games, plus the necessary serious side: Audi Sport’s teambuilding activity is far more than a fixture on the calendar of the race drivers, team directors and sporting management level. “We’ve been perfecting our joint team week for years,” explains Head of Audi Motorsport Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich. “A healthy mix of individual sports, team disciplines and theoretical units promotes an upbeat mood and the building of a cohesive team. Be it at Le Mans, in the WEC or in the DTM: A lot of the success would simply be impossible without a well-developed team spirit. Only a strong team stands its ground.”
For the first time, Audi Sport organized its training camp in Lanzarote. In addition to Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, the sporting management level that joined the activities on the Canary island included Dieter Gass (Head of DTM), Chris Reinke (Head of LMP) plus the team directors Arno Zensen (Audi Sport Team Rosberg), Ernst Moser (Audi Sport Team Phoenix), Hans-Jürgen Abt (Audi Sport Team Abt ), Thomas Biermaier (Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline) and Ralf Jüttner (Audi Sport Team Joest). In the drivers’ field, DTM rookie Nico Müller got to know his touring car colleagues Mattias Ekström, Jamie Green, Miguel Molina, Edoardo Mortara, Mike Rockenfeller, Timo Scheider and Adrien Tambay. Filipe Albuquerque – a DTM driver at Audi since 2011 – is switching to the brand’s sports car program this year where the Portuguese is joining Marco Bonanomi, Lucas di Grassi, Marcel Fässler, Loïc Duval, Marc Gené, Oliver Jarvis, Tom Kristensen, André Lotterer and Benoît Tréluyer.
Be it in stretching exercises for the morning warm-up or canoeing, mountain bike touring or beach volleyball, swimming or strength exercises, road biking or stand-up paddling: At temperatures of around 20 degrees centigrade, the Audi drivers proved their fitness and versatility from Tuesday to Saturday, accompanied by sports physician Dr. Christian John. “This year, the drivers again arrived well prepared for our joint week. They presented themselves in the type of physical and mental shape we like them to be in – starting with our 21-year-old newcomer Nico Müller through to our nine-time Le Mans winner Tom Kristensen, who is now 46 years old and in peak form just like his team-mates,” reports Dr. John, who has been Audi Sport’s team doctor for 31 years.
At the end of the week, the factory drivers prepared for future interview situations during a media training unit and demonstrated their professionalism in dealing with journalists as well. MotoGP racers Cal Crutchlow and Andrea Dovizioso, who are under contract with Audi’s subsidiary Ducati, joined them for this training unit that was held on Saturday and Sunday.