Woodcliff Lake, N.J. – Aug. 6, 2016… A disappointing qualifying session will see BMW Team RLL drivers start in the eighth and ninth GTLM class positions in tomorrow’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship Continental Tire Road Race Showcase. Engine regulation issues forced both cars to the pits twice during the 15-minute session. Unable to be rectified, the drivers were unable to complete a competitive lap.
Lucas Luhr qualified the No. 100 BMW M6 eighth with a lap of 2:04.129 minutes around the 4.048-mile, 14-turn circuit. He will co-drive with John Edwards. The pole position (2:02.451) was scored by Dirk Müller in the No. 66 Ford GT. Bill Auberlen, driving the No. 25 BMW M6 he shares with Dirk Werner, set the ninth fastest time with a 2:04.882 minute lap.
“That was obviously disappointing,” said Bobby Rahal, Team Principal. “At the moment I am not quite sure what happened, but both cars reacted negatively and we couldn’t do any competitive laps. To be honest it is not going to make a lot of difference come tomorrow and our tires are in a better shape than anyone else’s, so maybe there is a bright side to what happened today after all.”
Lucas Luhr, driver No. 100 BMW M6 GTLM (P8): “Up until this session we had two great cars for the whole weekend and we were on the pace. Now we have to sit together and analyze what went wrong in qualifying. We’ll sort it out for tomorrow.”
Bill Auberlen, driver No. 25 BMW M6 GTLM (P9): “Things happen to everybody. It was a technical issue that wouldn’t allow us to successfully complete laps. Rather than use the tires up we made a quick decision, as the team always does, to save the tires and keep them in good shape for the race. Once understood we will fix the problem and go racing tomorrow.”
The Continental Tire Road Race Showcase takes the green flag at 4:05 p.m. ET Sunday, Aug. 7 with the live broadcast beginning at 4:00 p.m. ET on FOX Sports 1. Follow BMW Team RLL on Twitter at @BMWUSARacing for “from-the-pit-box” updates all weekend.
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.
# # #
# # #