Klaus Ludwig’s Return?
Those of you who followed dailysportscar's coverage of the 2003 German Endurance Championship may recall the surprising and welcome return of Klaus Ludwig to competition, when he joined the Zakspeed team for the Eifelrennen last year; in a race that was intended to be a test for the 24 Hours, he drove the Zakspeed Viper to second place, with Walter Lechner, jr. and Peter Zakowski. His performance was proof that he still had not lost any of his driving ability. 11 months on, we are confident this has not changed.

At the recent Nürburgring race, Ludwig was a guest of the Alzen team, and drove the car in Friday practice. Jürgen Alzen Motorsport has in the meantime stated its intention to have Ludwig on the driver line-up for the 24 Hours.

dailysportscar.comLast year, conflicting sponsorship ultimately prevented "König Ludwig" from taking part in the 24 Hours; such issues will hopefully be looked at, and resolved to everyone's satisfaction, in time before this year's race. He still has commercial ties with Mercedes, which ideally will not keep him out of a Porsche cockpit.

The connection between Ludwig and Alzen (photo) is one that goes back to their days as Mercedes DTM drivers; when Ludwig announced his retirement at the end of the "new" DTM's inaugural season in 2000, he had a say in the choice of his successor, and it was Alzen who took his place in the HWA team.

Klaus Ludwig has three victories in the Nürburgring 24 Hours to his credit (1982, 1987, and 1999), as well as some success in that other 24 hour classic (Le Mans winner 1979 and 1984); his team mates in the 2004 'Ring marathon will most likely be Jürgen and Uwe Alzen, and Michael Bartels. Alzen regular Arno Klasen will stand in for the Vitaphone Saleen drivers in those German Championship races that clash with the FIA GT Championship, and is looking at other options for the 24 Hours.
Johannes Gauglica

Link to 2003 Klaus Ludwig feature


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