Magnus Racing Confirms 2016 Campaign with Audi R8 LMS

SALT LAKE CITY (November 12, 2015)- Confirming their campaign in the 2016 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, Magnus Racing is proud to announce the switch to the venerable Audi R8 LMS in a new partnership with Audi Sport customer racing.

“We’re very excited about 2016,” stated Magnus Racing co-driver and team owner, John Potter. “The Audi R8 LMS has proven an incredible competitor over the years, and as we look for ways to start anew for the team, the opportunity seemed right. Our interaction so far with everyone at Audi Sport customer racing has been extremely positive, and we’re all anxious to take delivery of the car.”

Retaining the famed No. 44, the team will head in to the 2016 GT-Daytona (GTD) class with a proven car heritage in the Audi namesake. The previous generation of the Audi R8 LMS took victory at the 2013 Rolex 24 at Daytona, and came within a few turns of repeating that effort in 2014, before nearly securing a GTD category championship in 2015.

“We have been continuously impressed with Magnus Racing’s performance in IMSA and are excited to see them bring that same energy with the new Audi R8 LMS,” said Tristan Herbert, Manager, Motorsport & Customer Racing. “Magnus Racing also brings a strong, consistent driver lineup that compliments the team’s performance strategy – smart , calculated and competitive.” 

While the car is new to the team, much of the key staff will remain the same including full-season co-driver Andy Lally. A four-time winner of The Rolex 24 at Daytona and three-time champion in the former GRAND-AM series, Lally will enter in to his fifth season with the team with all focus firmly set on their first series’ championship.

“I’ve been fortunate in my career to have driven a number of vehicles, and I’m very excited to add the Audi R8 LMS to that list,” stated the Atlanta resident. “It’s no secret that 2015 was a bit of a struggle for all of us, and I’m very confident that we’ll rebound this year. The car has an excellent reputation, we have a great team behind us, and there’s no reason we can’t be instant contenders.”

While the switch to Audi marks a new era for Magnus Racing, it of course comes with years of gratitude in their long-time partner at Porsche Motorsport North America. Having run Porsche machinery since inception in 2010, the team will move away from the marque with nothing but appreciation for the six years of partnership.

“We were one of the longest running Porsche customer teams in the paddock, and we absolutely enjoyed that fact,” stated John Potter. “Everyone at Porsche Motorsport North America was excellent to work with over the years, and we couldn’t be more appreciative of their efforts.”

With the team set to take delivery of their machine in December, Magnus Racing will unfortunately be absent from the upcoming November test at Daytona International Speedway. With only a matter of weeks between receiving the car and The Rolex 24 at Daytona, they will be hard at work during the holidays as they prepare for a championship challenge.

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FULL REPORT: Magnus Racing Scores Second in Wet Petit Le Mans Finale

BRASELTON, GEORGIA (October 5, 2015)- Following a wild event at this year's Petit Le Mans, the final round of the 2015 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, Magnus Racing would take a strong second in the GT Daytona (GTD) category. This would serve as the second podium for the team, ending a challenging season on a positive note. While the team was certainly pleased with their second consecutive podium at the event, it was bittersweet having led their class during much of the event.

“Looking back we're certainly happy for another podium,” stated Magnus Racing team owner John Potter. “It's tough because we were looking good for the win at multiple points during the race, but it just didn't work out for us when the series threw the checkered flag. It was still great to end the season strong, and everyone on this team should feel proud of the job they did.”

While the race was slated to last for 10 hours, an endless series of rain showers took their toll on the field, with series officials determining the conditions unfit to continue as the event neared eight hours. Eventually, the race was cancelled outright with drivers John Potter, Andy Lally, and Robert Renauer and the No. 44 Flex-Box Porsche 911 GT America in second when the premature checkered flag fell. 

As the green flag fell, the weeklong rain conditions would continue with John Potter taking starting duties under adverse circumstances. Knowing that attrition would play a major role on the day’s outcome, the Salt Lake City resident drove with patience and maturity as his opening stint progressed. Holding on throughout the opening hours, John would do an excellent job of keeping the car clean and not making a single error, eventually pitting during an opportune caution in favor of team newcomer Robert Renauer. 

While it would serve as his first Petit Le Mans, the German driver came into the event as no stranger to wet conditions, and it would show as Robert’s time in the car would slowly move the team up through the rankings. Thanks in part to clever pit strategy and a series of fortunate breaks with caution periods, Renauer would find himself caught up with the lead pack by time the third hour rolled around, and shortly after the No. 44 Porsche would find itself in the lead.

Engaged in a stint-long battle with the No. 93 Viper, a slight run through the grass in tricky conditions would be Robert’s only mistake, which would prove not enough to keep him from the lead.

Following a several-hour run, and under extremely difficult conditions, it was time for Andy Lally to take his turn for the race’s mid-point. Taking the reigns where Renauer left off, the pace of the Magnus Porsche in the wet was evident with Lally making a strong charge to build a gap to the field in front of him, leading by as much as 12 seconds nearing the halfway point.

As the Georgia-resident’s stint continued, a two-way race between the No. 73 of Spencer Pumpelly began to become clear, with Andy’s 11-second gap slowly dwindling as Pumpelly began his march up the field.

With just under six hours completed, however, the race would be stopped due to the extreme wet conditions with much of the paddock feeling as though this may lead to the race being called early. With Lally in front of the field at this time, the feeling within the Magnus paddock that they may have clinched their first victory of 2015 was optimistic.

Unfortunately, the teams would be called back to their cars within the hour, and Lally would have to once again defend his position against the charging Pumpelly.

With the field packed up under the red flag, the race would resume with the No. 73 Porsche of Pumpelly in close range of Andy, and as the green flag dropped it was clear the fight would be close.

With the two drivers engaged in a nose-to-tail battle for several laps, Lally did his best to thwart his good friend throughout much of the stint, however as the faster GTLM traffic came through, Andy would find himself stuck wide entering a critical section allowing Pumpelly to grab the lead and never looking back.

As Lally began to focus in on recapturing the lead, another yellow, and eventually red flag, would stop the race for good with the No. 44 stuck in second.

It was a bittersweet finish for the team, who on one hand were happy to take their second podium of the season, but disappointed having been so close to victory.

“It’s a tough one to let past,” stated Lally. “It’s so hard to win one of these races that you really don’t want to see one slip through. Everyone on this team worked so hard to take their first victory of the season, and I really wanted to deliver it for them. Unfortunately, it just wasn’t meant to be. As you would expect, Spencer drove completely fair and clean, he simply got me when he had the opportunity. Congratulations to him and the Park Place team for the win.”

For Robert Renauer, his Petit Le Mans debut should be considered a success.

“Of course a victory would have been great, but I think the team should be happy with a podium,” stated the German. “The Magnus Racing team was an excellent team to drive for. The crew was very professional, the car was very fast, and I felt very welcome through the whole experience. I’m glad I was able to take the car to the lead, and I’m sure next time the result will be even better. Thanks to John Potter and the whole team for the opportunity, hopefully I will be able to return.”

With the 2015 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship at a clean, the team will take some much needed time off in anticipation of their 2016 plans. Currently, the team has not made any formal plans however hope to make some announcements shortly.

Read more: FULL REPORT: Magnus Racing Scores Second in Wet Petit Le Mans Finale

Magnus Racing Struggles to Get into Gear in Austin

AUSTIN, Texas (September 21, 2015)- Headed into Saturday’s Lone Star Le Mans, the penultimate round of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, Magnus Racing’s hopes for a return to form were cut short within the opening laps as the team experienced gearbox problems. While the team would ultimately manage to get back on track after lengthy repairs, the No. 44 Flex-Box Porsche 911 GT America would be classified 12th in the GTD class and 23 laps down.

“The event was pretty indicative of our season,” stated Magnus Racing team owner and co-driver John Potter. “We had a fast car all weekend and were optimistic for the race, but unfortunately we lost drive early on, and that was that. There were still a lot of positives on the weekend. We were one of the fastest cars in practice, I think we had a good qualifying run, and I know we keep saying it but I believe with a couple different changes of fortune we would have had a really good race. Petit Le Mans is next and that’s one we all want to win, and I think we’re well prepared for it.”

After one of his best qualifying performances of the season, Potter would start from the sixth position for the two-hour, forty-minute race. After repeatedly setting the fastest lap during Thursday and Friday practice, and having finished second during the previous two visits, the team was optimistic on their chances. 

Unfortunately, after making a strong start, Potter would lose drive after the second lap, immediately pulling into the pits as the team looked for a quick cure to the problem. After a lengthy examination of the car’s rear-end, it was clear the car would have to be rolled back into the paddock for further analysis and repair. Eventually, the team discovered a terminal issue in the gearbox, having to switch to a backup and effectively losing nearly an hour in the process.

In typical Magnus fashion, the crew did a stellar job given the challenges of swapping a gearbox, and the Porsche would go back on track within an hour. With no hope of a good finish, the focus simply became on ensuring Potter drove his minimum drive time to score points on the day.

Once Potter clicked off his required time, the team would put teammate Andy Lally in to finish the race, with the Long Island native driving the final 40 minutes to take the car to the checkered flag.

“Yup,” stated Lally. “…..” 

With only one race remaining, the entire TUDOR Championship will head to the final race of the championship, Petit Le Mans, in less than two weeks. As a 10-hour race, taking place at the scenic Road Atlanta, the team is looking forward to the opportunity to repeat their podium performance from last year. Practice begins on Thursday, October 1, with the race taking place on Saturday, October 3. The full broadcast schedule will be revealed in an upcoming 

Read more: Magnus Racing Struggles to Get into Gear in Austin

Robert Renauer to Join Magnus Racing at Petit Le Mans Finale

SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (September 30, 2015)- With the final race of the TUDOR United Sports Car Championship just days away, Magnus Racing has bolstered their lineup for the upcoming Petit Le Mans with the addition of German standout Robert Renauer, who will join drivers John Potter and Andy Lally. Looking to repeat the team’s podium performance from last year, hopes are high for the No. 44 Flex-Box Porsche 911 GT America to end a challenging season on a high note.

“Having gone through a difficult 2015, we’d love to go in to the off-season with a bit of momentum,” stated Magnus Racing team owner John Potter. “It’s been a long and busy summer for everyone, and as we keep saying, the performance has been there all year but we’ve just struggled for a variety of reasons. Even if the championship is well past our grasp, a victory at Petit Le Mans is certainly something we all want to see. Having won two of the four major endurance events in the country, adding to that would be incredible for everyone on the team. Robert Renauer is new to the team, but his résumé speaks for itself. Even though it’s his first race at Petit Le Mans, I have no doubt he’ll fit right in and get up to speed quickly.”

A veteran of Porsche competition for over a decade, Robert Renauer will join Magnus Racing for his first-ever Petit Le Mans. Hailing from Germany, the 30-year old is a proven winner, having taken victory in such series as the ADAC GT Masters, VLN 24 Hour Series, and with experience in the Porsche Carrera Cup, Blancpain Sprint Series, and numerous endurance events including the 24 Hours of Nürburgring as well as Rolex 24 at Daytona. 

“I’m excited to join Magnus Racing for Petit Le Mans,” stated Renauer. “The team has a great reputation of being both fun and competitive, and it’s a great opportunity for me. I have not raced in this event before, so I’m looking forward to the opportunity. So far everyone has been very welcoming and inviting, and I think we’re all hoping for a strong result on Saturday.”

With teammate Andy Lally living within an hour’s drive of the 2.5-mile, 13-turn circuit, the New York native knows the team is fully capable of helping him earn his second victory at the famed event.

“This is one of the coolest events in the country, there’s no question that we all want to win this,” stated Lally. “I know we all keep saying the same thing, but we’ve honestly been one of the fastest cars at every event we arrive at, and the races just keep getting away from us. The team is solid, the car is fast, so we all know what we’re capable of. Hopefully this will be the weekend for us and we can prove the potential we’ve shown all year.”

As a 10-hour event and the final leg of the series’ Tequila Patrón North American Endurance Championship, practice will begin tomorrow, October 1, with the race beginning at 11:15AM ET on Saturday. Live coverage will be carried on a variety of channels, full listing below.


11AM-12PM: FOX Sports 2
2:30PM-7PM: FOX Sports 2
8:30PM-9:30PM: FOX Sports 2XX

Read more: Robert Renauer to Join Magnus Racing at Petit Le Mans Finale

Magnus Racing Looking to Finish Season Strong in Texas

AUSTIN, Texas (September 17, 2015)- With only two races remaining in the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, Magnus Racing will head to this weekend’s second-to-last round in Austin, Texas, looking to close their season on a high. With practice for the Lone Star Le Mans at the famed Circuit of the Americas beginning this morning, the team is looking to continue a podium streak at the venue that began in 2013.
“Circuit of the Americas is a great circuit to visit,” stated Potter. “Everyone talks about it being a Formula One circuit, and the quality of the facilities and aesthetics certainly shows that. We’ve been lucky to be on the podium every time we’ve come here, and our work is certainly cut out for us if we’re going to repeat that. We’ve had an incredibly fast car for the last several races, we just haven’t had the breaks we needed during the race, but hopefully our good history here can continue.”
First visiting the circuit in 2013, Magnus Racing has been fortunate to have seen the podium in every year they’ve come. In 2013, the team just narrowly missed out on victory to finish second, repeating the same effort in 2014 utilizing a combination of strategy and patience.
With the track providing notoriously close racing, and strategy often coming in to play, the team knows the chance to see their second podium of the season is strong.
For Andy Lally, hopes for a return to form are high.
“We’ve been one of the quickest cars at nearly every track during the last few events,” stated Lally. “This field is so competitive that if just one little thing doesn’t go your way, the race can turn on you, and we seem to keep getting caught out by that. Circuit of the Americas has traditionally been a great place for us in the past, so we’re hoping this will be a weekend to finally reward the guys for their efforts.”
With practice having already begun for the event, Saturday’s race will take part as part of a combined event with the World Endurance Championship, with the TUDOR race beginning at 12:30PM ET. Live television coverage can be found on FOX Sports 2, with FOX Sports 1 re-airing the broadcast on Sunday at 1:30PM ET. 

Read more: Magnus Racing Looking to Finish Season Strong in Texas