PHOTO_BMWglenSun

BMW Team RLL Disappointed at Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen; Edwards and Müller Finish 6th, Auberlen and Priaulx 10th

Wood­cliff Lake, N.J. – June 29, 2014 … The begin­ning of BMW Team RLL’s Sahlen’s Six Hour of the Glen story was better than the ending, as the team was unable to capi­talize on its excel­lent starting posi­tions (first and third) at Watkins Glen Inter­na­tional Raceway. The day of struggle ulti­mately ended with sixth and tenth place finishes.

The No. 56 BMW Z4 GTLM of John Edwards and Dirk Müller finished sixth, with a rela­tively trouble-free race only marred by Edwards having to take evasive action due to a spin­ning competitor during the second hour and drop­ping from third to ninth. Müller moved up to sixth by the fourth hour and Edwards, back in the car at the end, crossed the finish line in sixth. They completed 185 laps of the 3.4-mile, 11-turn circuit during the six-hour contest. The race was won by the No. 3 Corvette.

Bill Auberlen and Andy Priaulx had an unfor­tu­nate day in the No. 55 BMW Z4 GTLM, having to make 10 pit stops to their team­mates’ six, for a myriad of prob­lems after starting from BMW Team RLL’s first pole posi­tion of the season. They worked hard to stay on the lead lap, but a stop-and-hold penalty for avoid­able contact by Auberlen just before the third hour combined with three tire punc­tures to ulti­mately drop the car one lap to the leaders. Their tenth place finish was their poorest of the season and drops them out of the lead in driver points.

Sepa­rately, in the GTD class, a third BMW Z4 in the race, campaigned by Turner Motor­sport with drivers Dane Cameron and Markus Palt­tala, raced to a domi­nant victory – their second of the season. The duo completed a total of178 laps, leading 169 circuits during the race.

It was a disap­pointing race after performing so strongly all weekend in qual­i­fying and prac­tice,” said Gordon McDon­nell, BMWNA Motor­sport Manager. “That’s how it goes some­times. I think the pace of the Corvettes during the race surprised us. However, it is now on to Canada and we’ll continue the fight. Congrat­u­la­tions to Will Turner and the Turner Motor­sport guys on their second victory with the Z4 GTD. It was a domi­nating win and hope­fully more victo­ries will come for them during the season.”

Our cars were well-balanced and fast, but it was diffi­cult to show that today with every­thing that happened,” said Jay O’Connell, RLL VP Tech­nology. “Hope­fully, we have had all our bad luck. It is a tough day when you end up P6 and a lap down in 10th.”

John Edwards, driver No. 56 Z4 GTLM –“It was a very exciting race, but not neces­sarily in a good way. We had an issue right after one of the re-starts where I came round the corner, a Proto­type had spun and I had to go off to avoid it. As I went off to the right, he turned the wheel and backed out to the right so I had to go even further off. It cost me seven or eight posi­tions. It is surprising in a six-hour race we can’t recover from that, but there was a really long period of green flag running and we needed yellows to catch back up.”

Dirk Müller, driver No. 56 Z4 GTLM –“I had three thrilling stints and loved them all. I was really quick in all of them and put no scratches on the car. The Z4 ran well. Unfor­tu­nately, we had really tough luck. John had to avoid an acci­dent and made the best of the situ­a­tion; he went outside and lost seven posi­tions. Consid­ering the alter­na­tive, we’ll accept a sixth place finish.”

Bill Auberlen, driver No. 55 Z4 GTLM –“That was a weird and very chal­lenging day and it makes it much, much worse when you have a great car, but a lot of bad things go against you. I can’t remember the last time the car was that good and felt so connected. However, nothing went our way. We just hope it is now behind us. We leave with second in the points, but at least we are still near the top.”

Andy Priaulx, driver No. 55 Z4 GTLM –“We had a rela­tively good start, but that’s really all we had today. Unfor­tu­nately, in the areas where we needed to pass we weren’t quite strong enough. It opened Bill to bad luck and the call (avoid­able contact) went against him this time. Better luck in Canada.”

In other BMW racing action today, Joey Hand raced to a season’s best finish (7th) in round 4 of the 2014 DTM cham­pi­onship today at the Noris­ring. Team­mate Marco Wittmann was the top-finishing BMW driver (6th) and retained his lead in the driver points standings.

Round Six of the 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Cham­pi­onship, the Mobil1 SportsCar Grand Prix, will take place at Cana­dian Tire Motor­sports Park, in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada, on Sunday, July 13th. The race will be broad­cast live on Fox Sports 1 begin­ning at 2:00 p.m. ET. Follow BMW Team RLL on Twitter at @BMWUSARacing for “from-the-pit-box” updates all weekend. More infor­ma­tion on the program can be found at www.bmwusa.com and www.imsa.com.

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 and X4 Sports Activity Coupes.  The BMW Group sales orga­ni­za­tion is repre­sented in the U.S. through networks of 339 BMW passenger car and BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 139 BMW motor­cycle retailers, 120 MINI passenger car dealers, and 35 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.

Infor­ma­tion about BMW Group prod­ucts is avail­able to consumers via the Internet at: www.bmwgroupna.com

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 over two decades, compiling 28 victo­ries, 42 poles and three series cham­pi­onships (1992, 2010, 2011) 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.

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Jour­nalist note: Infor­ma­tion about BMW Group and its prod­ucts in the USA is avail­able to jour­nal­ists on-line at www.bmwgroupusanews.com and www.press.bmwna.com.

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