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IMSA Laguna Seca: Podium for Turner Motorsport at milestone race – BMW M Team RLL faces issues.

Turner Motorsport celebrated second place in the GTD class at the fourth race of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at Laguna Seca (USA), concluding its milestone weekend on the podium. BMW M Team RLL showed good pace in qualifying with the two BMW M Hybrid V8s but fell back in the race after incidents and missed the podium.

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Laguna Seca. Turner Motorsport celebrated second place in the GTD class at the fourth race of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship at Laguna Seca (USA), concluding its milestone weekend on the podium. The team, led by Will Turner, completed its 557th race in a BMW car – more than any other BMW M Motorsport customer team. BMW M Team RLL showed good pace in qualifying with the two BMW M Hybrid V8s but fell back in the race after incidents and missed the podium .

 

Philipp Eng (AUT) started the race in the #24 BMW M Hybrid V8 from third place after a strong qualifying session on Saturday. He held that position until the driver change to Jesse Krohn (FIN). However, a slip in the final hour of the race resulted in a damaged rear that had to be changed in the pits. Krohn finished the race in ninth place in the GTP class. Connor De Phillippi (USA) and Nick Yelloly (GBR) started in the sister car from fifth place and finished in seventh after losing time during a pit stop and also slipping off the track.

 

Robby Foley and Patrick Gallagher (both USA) took the lead in the GTD class in their #557 BMW M4 GT3 after the first yellow phase of the race from the second start position and had victory in sight. However, a few laps before the end, there was an unfortunate contact with a lapping GTP car which caused Foley to fall from first to second place. In the GTD PRO category, Madison Snow and Bryan Sellers (both USA) in the #1 BMW M4 GT3 from Paul Miller Racing finished in seventh place.

 

Comments after the race:

 

Connor De Phillippi (#25 BMW M Hybrid V8, 7th place): “It was a tough race. We had a good car this weekend, but we lost too much time and positions, especially in direct duels and when lapping the GTD cars. We still need to work on the drivability of the car and we generally need to do a better job with the race procedures. In this tight field, it's about tenths of a second, so we can't afford any mistakes. We will make another attempt at the podium in Detroit.”

 

Philipp Eng (#24 BMW M Hybrid V8, 9th place): “The positive is that we showed good pace throughout the weekend. We were in the top-three in every session. The car also felt very good in my first stint. It's very disappointing that we then fell so far back. We need to analyse exactly how this could have happened. At one point, we were ahead of the winning car. We will attack again in the next race.”

 

Robby Foley (#557 BMW M4 GT3, 2nd place GTD class): “It was a fantastic day – until just before the end of the race. Unfortunately, there was obviously a misunderstanding when lapping with a prototype. From my point of view, he pushed me off the track as I wanted to turn into the corner but I need to take a closer look at the footage. Second place is still a great result, and we take a lot of important points with us. However, when you're so close to victory, it still leaves a bitter taste.”

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