Gene re-signs for Audi

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FORMER University of Buckingham student Marc Gene will return to the Le Mans 24-Hour Race and the Spa-Francorchamps round of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) with Audi in 2013 it has been announced, writes James Beckett.

Gene was introduced as an Audi factory driver to assembled guests during the manufacturer’s pre-Christmas event at their Ingolstadt factory in Germany last week, and will race the very latest Audi R-18 e-tron ultra quattro Hybrid at both Spa and Le Mans it has been confirmed.

Speaking last Friday, Gene said: “I am very happy.

“I very much enjoyed being part of the Audi team in 2012 and I am delighted to be able to race for the company and team again in 2013.

“I enter the new year with the aim of winning both Spa and Le Mans.

“I have a very good track record at Spa. I won the 1,000km race there for Peugeot and last May won on my debut with Audi. Le Mans is also a race I have won.

“I passed the chequered flag first in France in 2009 and have also finished on the podium.

“It would be great to add another win at Le Mans in 2013 to my tally.”

Le Mans and the FIA World Endurance Championship are major shop windows for motor manufacturers.

Endurance racing proves to be a valuable marketing exercise for car companies

Gene, who spent many years in Buckingham when studying at the University, added: “Audi use these races as a valuable selling tool for their products, and also highlight new technology with the race cars.

“Many of the items we use on the Audi R18 e-tron ultra will eventually find their way to the cars driven on the highway.

“Endurance racing offers many chances to develop new technology and I am pleased to be part of this development.” Gene will also continue his role with Scuderia Ferrari next season.

“I am very pleased I will be again working for Ferrari and Scuderia Ferrari in 2013,” he confirmed.

“It is a fantastic thing to be involved with Ferrari and we are already working hard to provide a car to Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa that is capable of winning the world championship.”