You may have caught the mention of Michele Alboreto this past weekend, with a logo of his helmet taking an honorary position on the inner rear wing of the Audi R18s that tested on Easter Sunday in Le Mans. Perhaps you saw Tom Kristensen post about this on Facebook. A long time ago Alboreto was a star on the Audi squad and teammate to Tom who was killed during a testing session ten years ago today.
Those were different days. Audi was just getting started in sportscar racing. The R8 was an up-and-coming Le Mans racer and not a road car. We remember meeting Michele at Laguna Seca during the 1999 Monterey Historics, seeing him lounging by the Auto Union Silver Arrows with his young daughters or effortly giving thrill rides to journalists in the then-new Audi TT at an Audi press launch the following week.
Michele could boast wins in F1, IndyCar and more though we know him best for his stint with Audi from 1999-2001. And that 2001 race season, it's one to forget. Racer Magazine, who just published a remembrance piece about Michele, points out that we first lost Dale Earnhardt, then Bob Wolleck, and finally Michele in June when his R8 experienced a puncture and went airborn at the Lausitzring.
Read more over at Racer.