Woodcliff Lake, N.J. – July 2, 2016… BMW Team RLL was back at the sharp end of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GTLM field today, posting the second and third place starting positions for tomorrow’s Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen, the fifth round of the 2016 season.
The recently repaved Watkins Glen International circuit produced the expected fast laps with Dirk Werner setting the second quickest time (1:41.650 minutes) around the 3.4-mile, 11-turn circuit in the No. 25 BMW M6 he will co-drive with Bill Auberlen. John Edwards, driving the No. 100 BMW M6, was third – only 0.255 seconds in arrears of Werner with a 1:41.905 minute lap. Edwards co-drives with Lucas Luhr. The pole went to Richard Westbrook in the No. 67 Ford GT with a lap of 1:41.301 minutes.
This year is a historic one for The Ultimate Driving Machine® as Bavarian Motor Works celebrates its 100th anniversary. To mark the occasion both of the M6 machines race with unique liveries and numbers significant to the marque. The number 100 M6 looks forward to BMW’s next century with an artistic theme. The number 25 M6 races this weekend with a Stars and Stripes livery in honor of the nation’s Independence Day and the BMW M3 GTR that won the Petit Le Mans race in October of 2001.
“The testing we did here has paid off, but, of course, tomorrow is the race,” said Bobby Rahal, Team Principal. “As regards to the pace, we seem to be right there in the thick of it. Tomorrow will be about how we can perform over long runs, and I think the engineers are fairly happy with the way we ran this morning in long run scenarios and a kind of a race simulation. I think we have a good chance.”
Dirk Werner, driver No. 25 BMW M6 GTLM (P2): “I am happy because it looks like we have turned around our Laguna Seca result to something good here at Watkins Glen. I am very happy with how the car behaves on this track and we are just right there performance wise with our competitors. We did some good work during the Le Mans break with our testing efforts. It is a good position to be in if you are happy with the car and you feel comfortable with it. I think we can do something good in this race.”
John Edwards, driver No. 100 BMW M6 GTLM (P3): “We are definitely much more in the window here. I wasn’t surprised to see the Ford go quick, but I was a little surprised to see it go that quick. The race is a different story. It is six hours long, always unpredictable and there are a lot of chances for plenty of stuff to go wrong. We are in a good spot to stay out of trouble at the beginning and just see how the race unfolds from there.”
The Sahlen’s Six Hours of the Glen takes the green flag at 10:10 a.m. ET Sunday, July 3 with the live broadcast beginning at 10:00 a.m. ET on FOX Sports 1. 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 341 BMW passenger car and BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 153 BMW motorcycle retailers, 126 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.
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, former 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 their 25th season of competition in 2016, the team has compiled 37 victories, 49 poles, 144 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 earned three wins, two poles and a total of eight podium finishes to finish second in the Manufacturer, Team and Driver championships. Prior to the start of the 2016 season BMW Team RLL had won 13 races, 20 poles and 57 podium finishes.