BMW Team RLL — Mosport ALMS Preview

Wood­cliff Lake, N.J. – July 17, 2012… Round five of the ten race 2012 Amer­ican Le Mans Series will be held at Mosport Inter­na­tional Raceway on July 22 at the newly reno­vated Cana­dian Tire Motor­sport Park, in Bowmans­villeOntario, Canada. Mosport is a very fast 2.459-mile, 10-turn circuit that has chal­lenged drivers since 1961 and has only given up two third place finishes to BMW Team RLL in the previous three seasons of ALMS competition.

Following a streak of three consec­u­tive podium finishes in the first three races of the season, including a win at the 12 Hours of Sebring, BMW Team RLL had a diffi­cult day at the most recent race at Lime Rock Park. With only a fifth and sixth place finish, BMW stands second in manu­fac­turer points, trailing Chevrolet by 10 points. BMW Team RLL is second in ALMS team points. Joey Hand and Dirk Müller are third in driver points. Team­mates Bill Auberlen and Jörg Müller stand sixth.

“Mosport has been one of our most chal­lenging races every year in terms of getting the results we have been capable of,” said Bobby Rahal, Team Prin­cipal. “We have qual­i­fied well but haven’t earned the finishes we deserved. Last year we were in the lead with 15 minutes to go and we made contact with a competitor.  As a result we were given a drive through penalty which ended our chances for a victory. Hope­fully this year we won’t make those kinds of mistakes.”

Commenting on the chal­lenges ahead in the second half of the season Rahal continued, “The ALMS made a number of changes to the spec­i­fi­ca­tions of our compe­ti­tion even as recently as the last race.  As a result, our car has suffered in terms of the perfor­mance it had at one point. The Corvettes are very strong.  The Ferrari’s have been given bigger restric­tors at the last race which will have much more of an effect at Mosport than it would at Lime Rock Park so that will be a diffi­cult chal­lenge for us.  Porsche has always run well there and they have been given a number of upgrades over the course of this year so I think it will be a tough race for us given all of that. All we can do is do our best. Frankly, we really seem to be competing against Corvette at this point in time in terms of the cham­pi­onship.  However, having said that, Porsche won the last race and I don’t think we can take our eyes off of them either.”

Bill Auberlen, driver No. 55 M3 GT – “I finished third at Mosport in the past two seasons, but we should have been higher up on the podium. Mosport always offers many chal­lenges, but every real driver accepts them because to race hard and finish well there is some­thing that does not happen often.”

Jörg Müller, driver No. 55 M3 GT – “Mosport is the fastest track on our calendar and aero­dy­namics is the most impor­tant thing there. All the corners are quick and this should suit our BMW M3 GT. I’m really looking forward to come back to Canada. JJ Lehto and I finished second in 2000 in the V12 LMR and won there in 2001 in our BMW M3 GTR.”

Joey Hand, driver No. 56 M3 GT – “In previous years we’ve had the speed at Mosport, but, for a host of reasons, not the success. This year because of the strength our tire partner Dunlop has demon­strated at races like Sebring and Long Beach, I think we can add one more ingre­dient to the mix that may change things in our favor. These races are so compet­i­tive that having a tire that we can push longer in a stint or know that we can splash-and-go towards the end of the race without changing tires may just make the differ­ence we need.”

Dirk Müller, driver No. 56 M3 GT  I always enjoy racing at Mosport. We have been quick there and over the last three years I have been twice on pole. This race is a tough one and we need to work together to achieve a good result. The really impor­tant time in the cham­pi­onship has started and we need to score every point we can.”

The 2.45-hour Grand Prix of Mosport race is the fifth round of the 2012 ALMS cham­pi­onship. The race will take the green flag at 12:00 p.m. ET on Sunday, July 22. ESPN2 will air the race same-day begin­ning at 1:00 p.m. ET. Live streaming coverage is avail­able starting at 11:45 a.m. ET on ESPN3.com.

The Series’ website offers addi­tional content such as live in-car cameras, and timing and scoring for all users around the world. Viewers outside the U.S. can watch all ALMS races live on ALMS.com.

About BMW Team RLL:

 

BMW Group In America

BMW of North America, LLC has been present in the United States since 1975.  Rolls-Royce Motor Cars NA, LLC began distrib­uting vehi­cles in 2003.  The BMW Group in the United States has grown to include marketing, sales, and finan­cial service orga­ni­za­tions for the BMW brand of motor vehi­cles, including motor­cy­cles, the MINI brand, and the Rolls-Royce brand of Motor Cars; Design­work­sUSA, a strategic design consul­tancy in Cali­fornia; a tech­nology office in Silicon Valley and various other oper­a­tions throughout the country.  BMW Manu­fac­turing Co., LLC in South Carolina is part of BMW Group’s global manu­fac­turing network and is the exclu­sive manu­fac­turing plant for all X5 and X3 Sports Activity Vehi­cles and X6 Sports Activity Coupes.  The BMW Group sales orga­ni­za­tion is repre­sented in the U.S. through networks of 338 BMW passenger car and BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 139 BMW motor­cycle retailers, 113 MINI passenger car dealers, and 32 Rolls-Royce Motor Car dealers.  BMW (US) Holding Corp., the BMW Group’s sales head­quar­ters for North America, is located in Wood­cliff Lake, New Jersey.

Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing

BMW’s partner, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, based in Hilliard, Ohio and co-owned by three-time IndyCar Cham­pion and 1986 Indi­anapolis 500 winner Bobby Rahal, Mi-Jack co-owner Mike Lanigan and CBS LATE SHOW host David Letterman, has been competing for nearly two decades, compiling 22 victo­ries, 31 poles and two series cham­pi­onships (1992, 2010) as well as claiming an Indi­anapolis 500 victory (Buddy Rice in 2004). In 2009 the team joined BMW of North America to campaign the new BMW M3 in the Amer­ican Le Mans Series. In 2010 the team won both the Manu­fac­turer and Team Cham­pi­onships in the GT cate­gory. In 2011 the team swept all three GT titles — Manu­fac­turer, Team and Driver.

 

#      #      #