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Farfus wins qualifying race in Macau with the BMW M6 GT3 – WEC grid positions two and five for BMW Team MTEK in Shanghai.

The BMW teams have enjoyed a successful Saturday on a big weekend in Asia for BMW M Motorsport. Augusto Farfus (BRA) took victory for BMW Team Schnitzer in the qualifying race for the FIA GT World Cup in Macau (CHN). At almost the same time, BMW MTEK put in a strong performance in qualifying for the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) race in Shanghai (CHN).

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Macau/Shanghai. The BMW teams have enjoyed a successful Saturday on a big weekend in Asia for BMW M Motorsport. Augusto Farfus (BRA) took victory for BMW Team Schnitzer in the qualifying race for the FIA GT World Cup in Macau (CHN). He crossed the finish line first at the wheel of the #42 BMW M6 GT3 after twelve laps of racing. Starting from second on the grid, Farfus took the lead at the start and held it to the end. At almost the same time, BMW MTEK put in a strong performance in qualifying for the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC) race in Shanghai (CHN). The two BMW M8 GTE qualified second and fifth in the LM GTE Pro class.

 

Farfus produced a flawless drive at the demanding Guia Circuit on the streets of Macau. He wasted no time in taking the lead at the start of the race. After a safety car period following a crash, the 35-year-old did a great job of defending his lead and, after qualifying second last year, took victory in Saturday’s FIA GT World Cup race.

 

Meanwhile, at the Shanghai International Circuit, Nick Catsburg (NED) set the second fastest qualifying team of 1:58.874 minutes in the #81 BMW M8 GTE. The Dutchman missed out on pole position by just 0.247 seconds. He will share the driving duties with Martin Tomczyk (GER) in Sunday’s race. The #82 car – with Tom Blomqvist (GBR) and António Félix da Costa (POR) at the wheel – will start from fifth place.

 

Reactions on the BMW M Motorsport Asian Weekend (Saturday).

 

Jens Marquardt, BMW Motorsport Director: “Congratulations to Augusto Farfus, Charly Lamm and BMW Team Schnitzer Motorsport for the win in the qualification race in Macau. It’s a great start to the weekend. Augusto took the lead straight after the start and never gave it away. It shows what you can do if you know the track like he does and you arrive with a perfectly prepared car by Schnitzer. Fingers crossed for the team in tomorrow’s main race. Meanwhile, second and fifth place is not a bad position to be starting from in the 6 Hours of Shanghai. As it will be raining tomorrow, it will be a difficult race, but we’ve seen today that the speed of the drivers is there and we have a very good package. Even with the rain forecast, I have a positive feeling for Sunday.”

 

Augusto Farfus (BMW M6 GT3, car number 42): “The GT race here in Macau is always very special. It is extremely close, the field is top quality. That makes this win all the sweeter. We did not know exactly what to expect from the race. However, we had prepared very well. I was very determined at the start and was able to take the lead. I also gave it everything when the safety car came in. The BMW M6 GT3 was fantastic. Today is not quite as important as tomorrow, but it is still awesome to start from pole position on Sunday and to celebrate victory today. I am particularly pleased for Charly Lamm. It is an honour to drive for him and BMW Team Schnitzer. It is an even bigger honour to be able to call Charly a real friend and a mentor.”

 

Charly Lamm, team principal BMW Team Schnitzer: “I can hardly find the words to describe all that. Macau is just a special place for us. We saw that again today. Augusto’s performance was sensational. His qualifying display was impressive, then he made the perfect start today and was able to open a lead. That may only have been the qualifying race, but this win still feels very good. We now hope that we can carry this momentum into tomorrow. I’d like to say a big thank you to Augusto, the entire team and BMW.”

 

Nick Catsburg (BMW M8 GTE, car number  81): “In qualifying the car worked very well for me. I just kept it together and I’m happy with my lap. To put it on the front row in the WEC you have to have a very capable car, and Martin and I have that here in the BMW M8 GTE. It’s a long race tomorrow but we’re looking forward to fighting for the podium from start.”

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