Woodcliff Lake, N.J. – July 11, 2015… BMW Team RLL will start from the outside of the GTLM class front row and inside of the second row in tomorrow’s two-hour-and-forty-minute Mobil 1 SportsCar Grand Prix at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada.
Dirk Werner, driving the No. 25 BMW Z4 he shares with Bill Auberlen, qualified second with a 1:14.857 minute lap around the 2.4-mile, 10-turn circuit during the 15-minute session. His time was only .028 seconds slower than the pole winner Nick Tandy in the No. 911 Porsche.
Teammate Lucas Luhr qualified the No. 24 BMW Z4 third with a 1:14.984 minute lap, .127 seconds behind Werner. Luhr will co-drive with John Edwards.
The first half of 2015 has seen both BMW Z4 racing cars take a victory. Bill Auberlen and Dirk Werner won on the streets of Long Beach, Calif. in the No. 25 car and John Edwards and Lucas Luhr took the victory at Mazda Laguna Seca Raceway in the No. 24 machine. With podium finishes in every event except the 12 Hours of Sebring Auberlen and Werner are tied for the lead in the driver points standings. Edwards and Luhr stand in a tie for second place. The No. 25 Z4 and No. 24 Z4 are second and third in team points standings respectively. BMW holds a four point lead in the manufacturer points standings.
Bobby Rahal (Team Principal, BMW Team RLL): “I suspected we would be good here. We made changes to the cars overnight and made them much better today. I think there can still be some improvements, just from listening to the drivers, but I think we have still got some ideas what to do. It seems it is going to be difficult to pass here, so a good position in qualifying can be meaningful. If we get a good start and use some of the traffic to our advantage, like John did at Laguna Seca, that is going to help the cars. It is going to be a hard race, it is going to be fast and it is going to be warm.”
Dirk Werner, driver (No. 25 BMW Z4 GTLM, P2): “The session was a little bit difficult because the track conditions were changing compared to the morning practice, so we tried to anticipate that. I think it worked well when you see how some of our competitors struggled a little bit. I think we are right there performance wise. We did good set up work through all the practice sessions, made the right steps and are now in a good position for the race. To have a good finish here it is important to start up the front because overtaking is quite difficult. It looks good for now and I am happy.”
Lucas Luhr, driver (No. 24 BMW Z4 GTLM, P3 ): “It was a very good session, and I think second and third is not a bad place to start the race. As always, it is very, very tight with just more than a tenth between me and Dirk. I struggled a little bit with the balance. The front tires came up to temperature quicker than the rears. By the time the rear tires were there the fronts had degraded a little bit. I am optimistic for the race. I think we have a very good race car.”
The Mobil 1 SportsCar Grand Prix takes the green flag at 12:05 p.m. ET tomorrow and will be broadcast live on FOX Sports 1 from 12:00 – 3:00 p.m. ET. Follow BMW Team RLL on Twitter at @BMWUSARacing for “from-the-pit-box” updates all weekend.
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; Designworks, a strategic design consultancy based 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, 148 BMW motorcycle retailers, 123 MINI passenger car dealers, and 36 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.
The BMW Group
With its three brands, BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce, the BMW Group is the world’s leading premium manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles and also provides premium financial and mobility services. As a global company, the BMW Group operates 30 production and assembly facilities in 14 countries and has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.
In 2014, the BMW Group sold approximately 2.118 million cars and 123,000 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax for the financial year 2013 was euro 7.91 billion on revenues amounting to approximately euro 76.06 billion. As of 31 December 2013, the BMW Group had a workforce of 110,351 employees.
The success of the BMW Group has always been built on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company has therefore established ecological and social sustainability throughout the value chain, comprehensive product responsibility and a clear commitment to conserving resources as an integral part of its strategy.
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, CBS Late Show host David Letterman and Mi-Jack co-owner Mike Lanigan, has been competing for over two decades. Prior to the start of the 2015 season, the team had compiled 30 victories, 47 poles, 130 podium finishes, three series championships (1992, 2010, 2011) and claimed 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. The following year, the team won both the Manufacturer and Team Championships in the GT category and swept all three GT titles – Manufacturer, Team and Driver – in 2011. In 2012 the team finished second in the Team Championship and third in the Manufacturer Championship and in 2013, the team finished second in the Driver, Team and Manufacturer Championship. The 2014 season brought a new challenge with the creation of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship and the team finished on the podium six times including four second-place finishes. In 2015, the team will attempt to add to their 10 wins and 49 sports car podium finishes.