PressClub Global · Article.
BMW Motorsport News - Issue 11/2019.
14.04.2019 Press Release
Joel Eriksson to drive the CATL BMW M4 DTM in 2019 – BMW Customer Racing teams enjoy success with the BMW M4 GT4.
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Whether in the DTM, the FIA World Endurance Championship, the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, or countless other championships: Week after week BMW teams and drivers around the world do battle for points, victories and titles. Away from the track too, members of the large BMW Motorsport family around the world are also creating headlines. The “ BMW Motorsport News” allows us to regularly summarise all the action for you in a compact and informative manner. This way, you are always up to speed.
DTM: CATL new BMW M Motorsport Premium Partner.
Joel Eriksson (SWE) can look forward to having a new strong partner at his side at the DTM season opener at Hockenheim (GER). After the announcement of ZF, Schaeffler and BMW Bank as BMW M Motorsport Premium Partners for the cars of Philipp Eng (AUT), Marco Wittmann (GER) and Bruno Spengler (CAN), the next partnership has now been decided. Joel Eriksson will be fighting for DTM points and wins in the #47 CATL BMW M4 DTM this year. Previously, the energy storage system manufacturer was involved in works-supported customer racing and in the FIA WEC. “With CATL, we have gained another committed Premium Partner for the DTM,” said BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt. “It’s always great when collaboration can be developed and expanded continuously over the years. That was the case with CATL in recent seasons. Now we want to celebrate success together in this new dimension of the partnership.” Matthias Zentgraf, President Europe, CATL, said: “CATL is a strong partner for the car industry which is why I am really pleased that we can display CATL’s messages on the track with Joel Eriksson as of this season. As a new Premium Partner of BMW M Motorsport in the DTM, we want to deepen our partnership with BMW and enjoy success together.” Eriksson added: “I’m delighted to be contesting the DTM with CATL as Premium Partner this season. This will be my second year in the DTM and I’ve set myself plenty of goals. I hope to be driving for the top positions as often as possible with CATL, and will give it my all.”
CATL is a leader manufacturer of energy storage systems. The Chinese company was founded in Ningde in 2011. CATL develops and distributes high-performance lithium-ion batteries for electric cars and electric buses, as well as stationary energy storage systems for customers around the world. Based on the latest materials, the batteries and systems guarantee maximum safety, reliability, quality and charging efficiency. CATL’s objective is to develop state-of-the art concepts and technology that can be used to drive the green energy revolution.
DTM: Wittmann visits new BMW M Motorsport Premium Partner Schaeffler.
As of this DTM season, Marco Wittmann (GER) will compete in the new Schaeffler BMW M4 DTM, reason enough for the two-time DTM champion to visit the new BMW M Motorsport Premium Partner in Herzogenaurach (GER) last Tuesday. In addition to an autograph session and a comprehensive factory tour, a Q&A session with Formula Student junior engineers was the order of the day. “That’s how to kick off a successful partnership,” said Wittmann, who grew up just 15 kilometres away from Schaeffler HQ in Herzogenaurach. “I really enjoyed swapping views with some of Schaeffler’s employees and getting to know the impressive factory on a tour. The Q&A session with the Formula Student participants was also really exciting. Just like me, they love and live for the fascination of motorsport. Formula Student is a great entry point for them and some of the BMW Team RMG employees come from Formula Student.” The Schaeffler Motorsport Academy that has taken place annually since 2014 gives the junior engineers who will compete in Formula Student with their teams two days to exchange ideas and talk shop with Schaeffler experts on topics such as automated driving, project management, engineering and electric mobility. Participants take practice-based workshops, get involved in exciting discussion sessions and attend panel discussions with top-class experts. Also on-site in Herzogenaurach was a new Schaeffler BMW M4 DTM show car, which – like Wittmann – made for a popular subject of numerous selfies. The striking green and white racing car will be in action on the track for the first time this week. The official DTM test drives will be held at the Lausitzring (GER) from 16th to 18th April, before the new season gets underway at the Hockenheimring (GER) on 4th May.
DTM: BMW M1 Procar Revival at the Norisring.
40 years after the start of the Procar series initiated for the BMW M1, the car is captivating motorsport fans once again. As part of the DTM races at the Norisring (GER, 5th-7th July 2019), 14 models of the racing car built according to Group 4 regulations at that time and then driven by Formula 1 drivers and international privateers will make a spectacular comeback on the track. BMW Group Classic has been able to attract famous drivers back into the BMW M1 cockpit for the Procar Revival on the Nürnberg street circuit. Former Formula 1 drivers Jan Lammers (NED) and Marc Surer (SUI), two motorsport legends who were crowd pleasers in the original Procar races four decades ago will be in action. With historic motorsport on the DTM support programme, BMW Group Classic is evoking the BMW M1’s racetrack debut that was extraordinary in many ways. The mid-engine layout sports car that was designed for both racing action and road use was presented in autumn 1978. Delays in the production process prevented homologation from being completed on time, so the director of BMW Motorsport GmbH at that time, Jochen Neerpasch, along with the Formula 1 managers Max Mosley and Bernie Ecclestone started a totally new race series. The 19 Procar series races held in total in 1979 and 1980 shaped up to be an ideal stage for the BMW M1 that went on to enjoy success in other international competitions.
VLN: Snow causes race cancellation in the Eifel Mountains.
Race two of this season’s VLN Endurance Championship Nürburgring (GER) felt the full force of this weekend’s late onset of winter in Germany. Heavy snowfall and temperatures around freezing point caused the race to be cancelled just two laps in. The #42 BMW Team Schnitzer BMW M6 GT3, with Martin Tomczyk (GER) at the wheel, was leading at that point. Tomczyk was sharing the car with BMW works drivers Timo Scheider (GER) and Sheldon van der Linde (RSA), who gained his first experience at the wheel of the BMW M6 GT3 during Friday’s test and qualifying on Saturday morning. In qualifying, when it was still dry, BMW works driver Jens Klingmann (GER) and Peter Dumbreck (GBR) had secured second place on the front row of the grid in the FALKEN Motorsports BMW M6 GT3. In total, roughly 70 BMW cars were registered for the 44th DMV 4-Hour Race. These included more than 20 BMW M240i Racings in the CUP5 class, as well as six BMW M4 GT4s in the SP10 class and five BMW M6 GT3s in the SP9 class.
GT4 European Series: Successful start to the season for the BMW M4 GT4.
BMW Customer Racing teams enjoyed their first successes with the BMW M4 GT4 at the opening round of this season’s GT4 European Series at Monza (ITA). Simon Knap (NED) and Alec Udell (USA) finished third in the MDM Motorsport BMW M4 GT4 in Saturday’s opening race. Gabriele Piana (ITA) and Marius Zug (GER) came home sixth for RN Vision STS, earning themselves victory in the Pro-Am class in the process. They repeated their sixth-place finish in race two on Sunday, which this time meant second place in the Pro-Am class. Piana and Zug lead the Pro-Am standings with 43 points after the opening race weekend.