René Rast impresses with performance on every new step of his career ladder – and has always done so. This is how the German managed building a remarkable career in the Volkswagen Group that has taken him all the way to Le Mans. In 2016, he is representing Audi’s colors as the Le Mans reserve driver and as a GT driver.
A 150-hp entry-level model with front-wheel drive in a one-make cup. A genuine GT3 sports car with 560 hp. A Le Mans prototype with four-wheel drive and a hybrid system. In more than a decade with the Volkswagen Group, René Rast has successfully driven a lot of race cars, as his victories in the VW Polo Cup, Porsche Carrera Cup and Porsche Supercup one-make series show. In competition with the drivers from other marques he has taken victories as well, for instance in the ADAC GT Masters, the 24-hour races at the Nürburgring, at Spa and in his class at Daytona.
In the 2015 season, the Westphalian tackled the most challenging task in his career so far. For the first time, he contested two rounds of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) for Audi. In the Spa 6 Hours, he achieved fourth place with his teammates. In the Le Mans 24 hours, he was in contention for a position at the front when a defect caused the team to drop to seventh place. In 2016, Rast has been nominated as a reserve driver. The regular drivers share the remaining two cockpits.
This doesn’t mean, however, that René Rast won’t be driving any more races. In Audi’s GT3 sports car, the 29-year-old pro proves his talent around the globe. In fall 2015, he clinched second place on the city street circuit in Macau. In January 2016, he managed to take a GTD class victory in the Daytona 24 Hours with a three-second advantage.
The seeming ease with which he delivers his performances in the cockpit he transmits to his surroundings as well, casually commenting on his race. In conversation with his team or with journalists, there’s always a smile on his face. And he’ll even remain charming and open when a hopeless racing situation would not give him a reason to display such demeanor. René Rast is a fast, mature, professional and personable driver.
Date of birth: October 26, 1986
Place of birth: Minden (D)
Residence: Bregenz (A)
Marital status: single
Height/weight: 1.79 m/64 kg
Motorsport since: 1996 (Audi driver since 2009)
Le Mans races: 3
2002 1st German ICA Junior Kart Cup
2003 Formula BMW ADAC
2004 Formula BMW ADAC
2005 1st ADAC Volkswagen Polo Cup
2006 2nd Seat León Supercopa
2007 10th Porsche Carrera Cup, 8th Nürburgring 24 Hours
2008 1st Porsche Carrera Cup, 6th Porsche Supercup
2009 2nd Porsche Supercup, VLN (Audi R8 LMS)
2010 1st Porsche Supercup, ADAC GT Masters
2011 1st Porsche Supercup, 5th Porsche Carrera Cup, ADAC GT Masters (Audi R8 LMS)
2012 1st Porsche Supercup, 1st Porsche Carrera Cup, 1st Spa 24 Hours (Audi R8 LMS ultra), 1st GT class Daytona 24 Hours, ADAC GT Masters (Audi R8 LMS ultra)
2013 2nd GT class Daytona 24 Hours (Audi R8 GRAND-AM), 6th FIA GT Series, 6th ADAC GT Masters, Blancpain Endurance Series (in Audi R8 LMS ultra at each event)
2014 1st ADAC GT Masters, 1st Nürburgring 24 Hours, 1st Spa 24 Hours, 6th Blancpain GT Series (in Audi R8 LMS ultra at each event), 4th LMP2 class Le Mans 24 Hours
2015 2nd FIA GT World Cup Macau (Audi R8 LMS), 4th WEC Spa, 7th Le Mans 24 Hours (in Audi R18 e-tron quattro at each event)
2016 1st GTD class Daytona 24 Hours (Audi R8 LMS), reserve driver for the Le Mans 24 Hours (Audi R18), FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC), Nürburgring 24 Hours (Audi R8 LMS), Spa 24 Hours (Audi R8 LMS)