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PressClub Middle East · Article.

BMW Motorsport News - Issue 36/2017.

Marco Wittmann takes off with Premium Partner Red Bull – BMW Team Schnitzer scores valuable points at the Sachsenring.

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Whether in the DTM, the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar 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: Aerial warm-up for Spielberg.
Marco Wittmann (GER) wasted no time after his third place in Sunday’s DTM race at the Nürburgring (GER), immediately starting his preparation schedule for the next pair of races at the Red Bull Ring at Spielberg (AUT). Taking off from Red Bull Hangar 7 in Salzburg (AUT) - the impressive home of the Flying Bulls - the two-time DTM champion accompanied Lucas Auer (AUT, Mercedes) and Mattias Ekström (SWE, Audi) on board a 1958 Douglas DC-6B aircraft. The only DC-6B in the whole of Austria has been painstakingly restored and forms the centrepiece of the fleet for BMW Motorsport Premium Partner Red Bull. Although poor weather conditions meant that it was not possible to fly over the circuit, it did not dampen Wittmann’s enthusiasm for the race in Styria. "It was great to fly so low in the DC-6B and to see the alpine landscape,” he said. “It’s a shame that the flyover couldn’t take place but I’ll get over it. I already know the Red Bull Ring well and have been successful there. Naturally, I hope to repeat that success this time. Taking off with the Flying Bulls was a great experience.”

ADAC GT Masters: Eng and Catsburg in the points in both races.
BMW Team Schnitzer headed to the Sachsenring (GER) this weekend for races eleven and twelve of the season. Philipp Eng (AUT), who was second in the Drivers’ Championship going into the weekend, had his sights set on scoring valuable points in the title race. Eng and team-mate Nick Catsburg (NED) fought back strongly in the number 42 BMW M6 GT3 in race one on Saturday, climbing through the field from eleventh on the grid to finish fourth. Eng then qualified seventh for Sunday’s race, in which the Schnitzer duo finished sixth to score important points ahead of the season finale, which takes place at the Hockenheimring (GER) next weekend (22nd to 24th September). Eng remains second in the Drivers’ Championship, 20 points off the lead with two races remaining.

Blancpain GT Series: ROWE Racing produces impressive fightback.
The teams and drivers in the Blancpain GT Series assembled at the Nürburgring (GER) this weekend for the final two sprint races of the season. Among those in action was the ROWE Racing team. Saturday’s qualifying race featured both the number 98 BMW M6 GT3, driven as usual by Finnish duo Markus Palttala and Jesse Krohn, and the number 99 car. At the wheel of the second BMW M6 GT3 were the two BMW works drivers António Félix da Costa (POR) and Jens Klingmann (GER), who was standing in for regular driver Philipp Eng (AUT). Starting from 20th, the number 99 car worked its way into seventh place, while Palttala/Krohn also produced an impressive fightback to finish tenth from 26th place on the grid. The Finnish duo upped their game again in Sunday’s main race, finishing an outstanding fourth in the final race of the Sprint Cup. Félix da Costa and Klingmann had to settle for eleventh place. The final round of the Blancpain GT Series is the Endurance Cup in Barcelona (ESP) on 30th September to 1st October.

BTCC: Eventful race weekend at Silverstone.
The penultimate race weekend of the 2017 British Touring Car Championship (BTCC) produced plenty of action at Silverstone (GBR). Sunday’s opening race included a big crash involving Rob Collard (GBR), which ultimately led to the race being suspended. Fortunately, Collard was able to get out of his BMW 125i M Sport without assistance, but was still taken to hospital for a precautionary check-up. This brought the race weekend to a premature end for the British driver. His West Surrey Racing team-mate Andrew Jordan’s (GBR) car was also involved in the crash, and was unable to finish race one. Colin Turkington (GBR), who is currently second in the Drivers’ Championship, was third. Turkington finished in the points, again in third place, in race two, putting him in a good position with one round remaining. In the third race he finished out of the points in 22nd. Jordan was 27th and 8th in races two and three. The final round of the BTCC will take place at Brands Hatch (GBR) from 30th September to 1st October.

GT4 European Series Northern Cup: Koebolt and van der Ende take overall victory.
A fitting end to a successful season: Max Koebolt and Ricardo van der Ende (both NED) dominated proceedings in the Ekris M4 GT4 at the final race weekend of the GT4 European Series Northern Cup at the Nürburgring (GER). Two wins from two races was sufficient to secure overall victory. The duo in the number 8 car left the opposition in their wake in qualifying, securing pole position on both Saturday and Sunday. Koebolt/van der Ende then produced flawless performances in the two races to take victory in the Silvercup and earn Ekris Motorsport the Team’s title with a commanding lead.

Red Bull Air Race: BMW DTM drivers visit the Lausitzring.
Before the DTM returns to action this coming weekend, BMW drivers Marco Wittmann (GER) and Tom Blomqvist (GBR) took the opportunity to visit the Red Bull Air Race at the Lausitzring (GER). Wittmann and Blomqvist entertained the public over the course of the two-day event with action-packed demonstration drives in the BMW M4 DTM and BMW M3 DTM. Reigning DTM champion Wittmann also took “Germany’s Next Top Model” contestant Betty Taube for a lap in the BMW race taxi. Taube, who had already been taken for a couple of ‘flying’ laps with Red Bull Air Race world champion Matthias Dolderer (GER), was visibly impressed. This was the second time that BMW Motorsport has visited the Red Bull Air Race. Last year, Wittmann was joined at the Lausitzring by BMW works driver Martin Tomczyk (GER).

Spanish Touring Car Championship: More practical experience for Mikkel Jensen.
BMW Motorsport Junior Mikkel Jensen (DEN) gained more practical experience this weekend. The 22-year-old was driving a BMW M235i Racing in the Spanish Touring Car Championship at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya (ESP). Over the course of the season, Jensen, who has been part of the BMW Motorsport Junior programme since the start of the year, has also proven himself at the wheel of the BMW M4 GT4 and the BMW M6 GT3.

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