Rinaldo Capello „American way of life which I really like a lot.”
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Sears Point, July 22, 2000

With the fastest lap ever driven at Sears Point Raceway Allan McNish conquers pole position for tomorrow’s race on the famed Californian raceway. Teammate Emanuele Pirro also improved Friday’s time and completed the triumph with second position on the grid for the fifth round of the American Le Mans Series (ALMS).

Grand Prix of Sonoma
Audi R8 #78, Frank Biela
Audi R8 #77, Allan Mc Nish
Frank Biela (left) and Emanuele Pirro
Audi R8 #77, Allan Mc Nish
Audi R8 #78, Emanuele Pirro


Car Cls Pos Drivers  Team Car   Time


77 1 McNish/Capello Audi R8 Audi Sport North America 1:20.683


78P 2 Pirro/Biela Audi R8 Audi Sport North America 1:21.227


1P 3 Brabham/Magnussen Panoz LMP-1 1:21.610


2P 4 O'Connell/Katoh Panoz LMP-1 1:22.247


0P 5 Schiattarella/de Radigues Lola B2K/10 1:22.570


42P 6 Lehto/Mueller BMW V12 LMR 1:23.186


36P 7 Johansson/Smith Reynard 2KQ 1:23.589


43P 8 Auberlen/Gounon BMW V12 LMR 1:24.084


37 P 9 Field/Sutherland Lola B2K/10/Judd 1:25.417


24P 10 Simo/Matthews Reynard 2KQ/Judd 1:26.072


38 11 Schroeder/Weaver Lola B2K/10/Porsche 1:26.215
Audi R8 #77, Rinaldo Capello
Allan McNish signing a shirt, Rinaldo Capello and Emanuele Pirro looking after ...... and a busy Frank Biela

Allan McNish (#77)
„The circuit is about eight-tenths faster than yesterday. My second lap was the fastest, I was able to get a clear lap. We need to be on the front row, first for the championship with the BMW behind us and second for track position, especially with the traffic we will see in the race tomorrow.”

Rinaldo Capello (#77)
„Racing in the USA is completely different compared to Great Britain or Germany. You won’t find a track like Sears Point anywhere and you certainly won’t find the American way of life which I really like a lot.”

Frank Biela (#78)
„This track is extremely strange and difficult. It’s very hard to find your line in the close corners. Having very little run off areas you must not make any mistakes.”

Emanuele Pirro (#78)
„I’m quite happy. We did some modifications since this morning. We had three different options and I thought I’d chosen the best one. But with new tires I had a little bit of understeer. Anyway, the car looks good for the race.”

Dr Wolfgang Ullrich, Head of Audi Sport
„A very important thing will be to go first and second into the first corner and then gain some space. Because once we get stuck behind other cars we cannot play out our strength in certain parts of the circuit.”

Reinhold Joest, Team Director Audi Sport North America
„For some reasons I’m very satisfied with this result: Everybody but Allan has raced at Sears Point for the very first time, we found a good setup very quickly and the drivers got used to this difficult track within just one day. Race day will of course be another story.”

After this excellent qualifying effort Audi Sport North America is preparing the two Audi R8’s with a lot of respect for the circuit and competition. “We need a very good start because obviously overtaking is very difficult. But I think we did everything we could to be well prepared” says Team Director Reinhold Joest.

The 2.45 hour race starts on Sunday at 12:00hrs. Qualifying drivers Allan McNish and Emanuele Pirro will begin the race, Rinaldo Capello and Frank Biela will take over.

Frank Biela (left) and Emanuele Pirro
Allan McNish signing a shirt, Rinaldo Capello and Emanuele Pirro looking after ...... and a busy Frank Biela
Reinhold Joest
Tom Kristensen, Dr Wolfgang Ullrich, Emanuele Pirro

Dr. Ullrich „Important go first and second into the first corner.”

Dr. Ullrich „Gain some space.”

Rinaldo Capello „American way of life which I really like a lot.”

First and second at Sears Point


Joerg Mueller 105


JJ Lehto 103 -2


Jan Magnussen 95 -10


David Brabham 94 -11


Frank Biela 87 -18


Emanuele Pirro 85 -20 20 = 5 wins and Joerg 2nd (+4)


Allan McNish 71 -34 34 = 6 wins and Joerg 3rd (+6) = 36 +2


Rinaldo Capello 70 -35

1 25

2 21 -4

3 19 -6

4 17 -8

5 15 -10

6 14 -11

7 13 -12

8 12 -13

9 11 -14

10 10 -15

11 9 - 16 (only 11 cars in the race)

12 8

13 7

14 6

15 5

1 Bonus Point
Lead Lap (only one)
Most Lead Laps
Fastest Lap