Rahal Letterman Lanigan has a long history of hiring stellar drivers to man our race cars. Starting with our original driver and founder Bobby Rahal, whose legendary career set the bar high, the team has enjoyed having a long string of successful race car drivers. Some of our former drivers include famous names such as Bryan Herta, Max Papis, Kenny Brack, Jimmy Vasser, Michel Jourdain Jr., Danica Patrick, Buddy Rice, and Ryan Hunter-Reay. Today, the tradition continues, as our current staff of world class drivers continues to show week after week that their skills behind the wheel are one of the main ingredients of our successful team. Browse our driver bios and you’ll see that the the tradition continues of having world class, top notch talent in the driver seat.
Graham Rahal grew up attending race events around the world with his father, 1986 Indianapolis 500 winner and three-time Indy car champion Bobby Rahal, and cut his teeth in karting and moved up through feeder series to Indy car racing. In 2008, a victory at St. Petersburg – in his IndyCar Series debut – made him the youngest winner in a major auto race at 19, 93 days old. He also co-drove the winning car in the 2011 Rolex 24 at Daytona sports car race.
Last year, Augusto Farfus competed in Daytona in Turner Motorsport’s BMW Z4 GTD. Now, in the BMW Z4 GTLM, the BMW works driver will support BMW Team RLL in the endurance classics this season. He will drive alongside Bill Auberlen, Dirk Werner and Bruno Spengler in Daytona. Thanks to entering the endurance races at the Nürburgring and Spa-Francorchamps, Farfus already has a lot of experience driving the BMW Z4 GT3. In the DTM, 2015 sees Farfus compete in his fourth season for BMW Motorsport. In the touring car series in 2013, his three victories saw him take second place in the drivers’ standings.
The combination of BMW and Bill Auberlen is a recipe for success. Regardless of which model the American takes out onto the track: the driver and car work in perfect harmony. The experienced Auberlen is a true all-rounder. As well as being brilliant in the latest BMW models, such as the BMW M3 GT or the BMW Z4 GT3, he can also look back on experience with historic cars like the BMW V12 LMR, McLaren BMW and the BMW M3 GTR.
Bruno Spengler has been one of the best DTM drivers for ten years now. Between 2006 and 2013 he consistently finished in one of the top five spots in the drivers’ standings. In 2012 he crowned BMW Motorsport’s return to this series by winning the drivers’ title. Now he is taking on a new challenge, and will make his debut in the 24 Hours of Daytona, in the BMW Z4 GTLM. Spengler is Canadian and spends quite a bit of time in his home country each year. However, the last time that he competed in a race in North America was back in the 2002 season. That was when he won the title in the North American Formula Renault. In May 2015, alongside BMW Motorsport, Spengler will contest his 11th DTM season.
BMW Team Schubert and BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS will once again be able to call on the squad of BMW works drivers for reinforcement in 2014. Spearheading this season’s BMW Motorsport endurance programme is Dirk Werner.
The coming season sees Jens Klingmann make his debut in North America. The BMW works driver will support BMW Team RLL in selected endurance races, such as the 24 Hours of Daytona and the 12 Hours of Sebring. Klingmann knows the GT3 version of the BMW Z4 like the back of his hand.
John began racing karts in 2003 winning the Great Lakes Sprint Series Jr Briggs Restricted Championship. That same year he became the youngest ever licensed driver in U.S. open-wheel road racing. Competing in the Skip Barber Formula Dodge Race Series on January 17, 2004, John became the youngest winner in open wheel road racing history, at just 12 years of age. Later in 2004, John won the Red Bull Driver Search, an effort to find the next American F1 World Champion.
Alongside BMW Motorsport, the 2015 season sees Lucas Luhr return to where he has celebrated some of the biggest successes of his career to date – North America. He will compete alongside John Edwards in the number 24 BMW Z4 GTLM. Between 2002 and 2012, Luhr won a total of five driver titles in the American Le Mans Series, from which the United SportsCar Championship originated. He first made his mark on the GT class; then the old hand also went on to win in the LMP2 and LMP1 prototypes.