Published on July 29th, 2015 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez0
BMW’s DTM contingent ready for the Spielberg
After the successful weekend in Zandvoort (NL), with a top-seven shut-out on Saturday and a top-five shut-out in the race on Sunday, BMW Motorsport is stopping off in Spielberg (AT) from 31st July to 2nd August. The “Red Bull Ring” will host the ninth and tenth DTM races of the season and is the venue for the second of the series’ appearances outside of Germany.
The BMW teams have made history on the 4.326-kilometre track in Styria in the past two years: after the one-two-three in 2013, they stepped up a gear last season and celebrated BMW’s first top-four shut-out in 22 years. Alongside winner Marco Wittmann (DE), Augusto Farfus (BR), Timo Glock (DE) and Martin Tomczyk (DE), who will contest his 150th DTM race in Spielberg on Saturday, clinched the other spots in the fantastic success.
Classic meets modern in Spielberg. Races have been held there since 1969 – when the track was called the “Österreichring”. Just one year after its opening, the track hosted Formula 1 for the first time. The current layout was designed by racetrack architect Hermann Tilke (DE). The DTM was held at the “A1 Ring”, as it was formerly known, between 2001 and 2003 and returned to Spielberg in 2011. The spectators at the ‘Red Bull Ring’ are crazy about motorsport: Last season saw 47,500 fans follow the action at the track over the course of the weekend.
Four BMW DTM drivers were in racing action once again last weekend. Timo Glock (DE) and Bruno Spengler (CA) were at the heart of a very special project: they shared the cockpit with double amputee Alessandro Zanardi (IT) for the first time at the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps (BE). The BMW Motorsport engineers had come up with innovative technical solutions to modify the BMW Z4 GT3 for this extraordinary first. Unfortunately, however, a technical fault forced the trio to retire in the final hour of the race. Farfus and Maxime Martin (BE), who shared driving duties with BMW works driver Dirk Werner (DE), retired whilst leading the race. Despite this, BMW Motorsport still had cause for celebration at the classic in the Ardennes region of Belgium: BMW works driver Lucas Luhr (DE), Markus Palttala (FI) and Nick Catsburg (NL), at the wheel of a BMW Z4 GT3 run by BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS, claimed a 22nd overall victory for BMW at the “Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps”.
2014 winner: Marco Wittmann, BMW
2014 pole: 1:25.175 minutes (Robert Wickens, Mercedes)
Top BMW in 2014: Marco Wittmann, 1st
DTM debut: 2011
BMW wins: 2
BMW pole positions: 1
BMW fastest laps: 1
BMW podiums: 7
Statistics for the BMW DTM drivers.