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First sprint race of the IMSA season at Long Beach with two BMW M Hybrid V8s and three BMW M4 GT3s.

The third race of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season will take place on the street circuit at Long Beach (USA) next Saturday. Following the endurance classics at Daytona and Sebring (both USA), this marks the first and shortest sprint race of the year.

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Munich. The third race of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season will take place on the street circuit at Long Beach (USA) next Saturday. Following the endurance classics at Daytona and Sebring (both USA), this marks the first and shortest sprint race of the year. Fresh from a podium finish at Sebring, BMW M Team RLL heads to California with momentum, and will again field two BMW M Hybrid V8s in the GTP class. In the GTD category, three BMW M4 GT3s will be on the starting grid.

 

The 100-minute race, making it the shortest of the IMSA season, presents a unique challenge for the BMW M Team RLL drivers. Only Connor De Phillippi (USA) is familiar with the distinctive street circuit; his teammate in the #25 BMW M Hybrid V8, Nick Yelloly (GBR), as well as Augusto Farfus (BRA) and Philipp Eng (AUT) in the #24 car, will be new to the track. All BMW M works drivers have prepared even more intensively in the simulator and will do everything possible to build on the second-place finish from Sebring. This time, special emphasis will be placed on performance in qualifying, which will play an important role on the tight circuit.

 

Paul Miller Racing heads to Long Beach with the momentum of two victories in the GTD class. Bryan Sellers and Madison Snow (both USA) triumphed most recently at Sebring, as well as last year at Long Beach. The duo later clinched the 2022 GTD Sprint title. Robby Foley and Patrick Gallagher (both USA) will represent Turner Motorsport in the #96 BMW M4 GT3. The car bearing the starting number 95 will switch from the GTD PRO to the GTD class for the sprint races and will be driven by Bill Auberlen and Chandler Hull (both USA).

 

The Acura Grand Prix of Long Beach will start on Saturday, 15th April, at 14:05 local time (23:05 CEST).

 

Quotes ahead of the race:

 

Bobby Rahal (Team Principal BMW M Team RLL): “Long Beach is always a great event and we’ve had very good success there in past seasons with BMW M Motorsport. This year, with the BMW M Hybrid V8, it’s an entirely different animal. But as always, at a tight street circuit, where it’s tough to pass, a good qualifying effort is paramount.”

 

Augusto Farfus (#24 BMW M Hybrid V8): “Long Beach will be a challenge for both me and Philipp Eng. I believe we may be the only pair to have never driven this circuit. It is certainly a race I have been looking forward to and looks to be a very exciting event. I have been watching many videos. We will push hard to get up to speed. The team made some good improvements to our BMW M Hybrid V8 at Sebring, and we will look to continue to close the gap to our competition.”

 

Philipp Eng (#24 BMW M Hybrid V8): “I am very much looking forward to racing at Long Beach, which is a new track for me. I have done a million laps around there on the simulator, so I can’t wait to race there in real life. We took some major steps at Sebring and our whole team is working very diligently so we keep improving.”

 

Connor De Phillippi (#25 BMW M Hybrid V8): “Long Beach is always a special event for us. It’s the shortest race of the year, our only street course, and the strategic possibilities are endless. On top of that, we have a nice wave of momentum from our Sebring podium and the entire team is making a big push to bring a lot of improvements from every department. We don’t have prototype experience there but I’m confident we can learn from last year and fight for another podium.”

 

Nick Yelloly (#25 BMW M Hybrid V8): “I am really looking forward to racing at Long Beach. It will be my first time there, as with most of the tracks in the US. After having watched it for many years on TV, to be finally driving is a dream come true, as I love street circuits. We will be looking to continue to make progress as we did in Sebring with our BMW M Hybrid V8 and hopefully be at the sharp end of the field.”

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