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      08-18-2014, 07:56 AM   #1
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IMSA: Oak Tree Grand Prix @ VA International Raceway (08/24/14)

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     Featured on BIMMERPOST.com
Updated with final results, reactions, and press release:

BMW Team RLL Finishes 3rd and 4th at Virginia International Raceway; Edwards/Müller Race to 2nd Consecutive Podium Finish

Woodcliff Lake, N.J. – Aug. 24, 2014 . . . BMW Team RLL put in a strong performance in today’s TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Oak Tree Grand Prix at Virginia International Raceway, finishing 3rd and 4th in the headlining GTLM class.

John Edwards and Dirk Müller raced to a second-consecutive podium with a third place finish in the No. 56 BMW Z4. They completed 82 laps of the 3.27-mile, 17-turn VIR circuit in the 2.75-hour contest, finishing only .764 seconds behind the winning Ferrari. The result moves Edwards and Müller into a tie for third place in GTLM driver standings with their BMW Team RLL teammates. Müller took the green flag from the fourth starting position and ran as high as third, before pitting to hand off to Edwards on Lap 29. Edwards moved up as high as second, ultimately finishing third to secure the duo’s third podium finish of the season.

The No. 55 BMW Z4 of Bill Auberlen and Andy Priaulx finished fourth. The car was started by Priaulx from the second qualifying position. He held that spot for the opening hour before pitting to hand off to Auberlen on lap 28. Auberlen battled a vibration from the left rear of the car during the closing stages of the race, but was able to hold onto a fourth place finish.

Separately, in the GTD class, the Turner Motorsport BMW Z4 GTD, driven by Dane Cameron and Markus Palttala, raced to the team’s fourth victory of the season (Laguna Seca, Watkins Glen, Road America, and VIR).

“We put in an excellent effort,” said Gordon McDonnell, BMWNA Motorsport Manager. “It is unfortunate we missed out on the top step of the podium, but I think we can be proud of third and fourth and good championship points.”

“We were playing the odds there with the yellows,” said Jay O’Connell, RLL VP Technology. “If the race hadn’t gone yellow at the end, the No. 17 Porsche was going to have to pit for fuel and we would have earned a double-podium. But as the yellow came out, ironically for another Porsche, the No. 17 was able to extend, and we ended up P3 and P4. I think both BMW cars did well to earn some good points by avoiding mistakes, and we are happy with that.”

John Edwards, driver No. 56 Z4 GTLM – (3rd) – “That was a great points day and we have moved up to tie third in the championship. Unfortunately, the Falken Porsche was able to make it at the end on fuel thanks to that last yellow. We were counting on them running out and it staying green.”

Dirk Müller, driver No. 56 Z4 GTLM – (3rd) – “I am thrilled with the result - many thanks to the team. We were focused from qualifying onwards so we had no qualifying set-up, just the race one. As could be seen today my car was a rocket and I was able to save fuel. It paid off as I was able to stay out longer and gain positions. Well done to John. Now we are tied for third in driver points. We could have gambled on the strategy like some others, but we didn't do that as normally it would stay green, but then there was a yellow. It is a podium, our second consecutive one, and I am happy about that. There are still two races to go and we are fighting hard.”

Bill Auberlen, driver No. 55 Z4 GTLM – (4th) – “We qualified on the front row and have been fairly quick all weekend. We are as good as the competition in the corners, but they just drive away on the straights. It was a frustrating day at the races.”

Andy Priaulx, driver No. 55 Z4 GTLM – (4th) – “The team did really well with the strategy, but it is difficult to know when the next yellow is going to come. You have to be able to look into the future. I was really delighted with my stint. I came in from P2 and was in touch with the leaders. We were a little bit unlucky with a couple of calls. Overall, we did the maximum and I think it is a great result for BMW.”

Round Ten of the 2014 TUDOR United SportsCar Championship, the Lone Star Le Mans, will take place at the Circuit of the Americas, in Austin, TX, on Saturday, September 20th. 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.


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___________________________________________

Original post:



Jeebus, Monday morning and I'm starting already...what did I get myself in to here??

Next weekend will be the IMSA Oak Tree Grand Prix / TUDOR United SportsCar Championship.

BROADCAST LIVE Aug. 24, 4:00 p.m. - Fox Sports 1

*Tudor United SportsCar Championship
*Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge
*Prototype Challenge
*Lamborghini Super Trofeo
*Maserati Trofeo will also be making its only stop in the USA



If you plan on going, there is a special corral for BMW:
BMW Car Corral & Hospitality
This corral is for BMW CCA members only. Packages include corral parking and access to the hospitality tent where food and beverages will be provided.
Driver and Passenger packages include admission and hospitality for two.





VIR has recently been repaved. Should provide faster times.


SCHEDULE:
08/22/2014
Practice 1 - Continental Tire Challenge 8:00 AM - 8:45 AM ET
Practice 1 - Lamborghini 9:00 AM - 9:50 AM ET
Practice 1 - TUDOR Championship (PC/Lites) 10:45 AM - 11:45 AM ET
Practice 2 - Continental Tire Challenge 12:45 PM - 1:30 PM ET
Practice 2 - Lamborghini 1:45 PM - 2:35 PM ET
Practice 1 - TUDOR Championship (GTLM/GTD) 2:50 PM - 3:20 PM ET
Practice 2 - TUDOR Championship (PC/Lites) 3:35 PM - 4:20 PM ET
Qualifying - Continental Tire Challenge (ST) 4:40 PM - 4:55 PM ET
Qualifying - Continental Tire Challenge (GS) 5:10 PM - 5:25 PM ET
Practice 2 - TUDOR Championship (GTLM/GTD) 5:50 PM - 6:40 PM ET..

08/23/2014
Practice 3 - TUDOR Championship (GTLM/GTD) 8:15 AM - 9:45 AM ET
Qualifying - TUDOR Championship (Lites) 10:50 AM - 11:10 AM ET
Qualifying - TUDOR Championship (PC) 11:15 AM - 11:30 AM ET
Qualifying - Lamborghini 11:45 AM - 12:15 PM ET
Qualifying - TUDOR Championship (GTD) 12:30 PM - 12:45 PM ET
Qualifying - TUDOR Championship (GTLM) 12:50 PM - 1:05 PM ET
Race - Continental Tire Challenge 2:05 PM ET (2 hours 30 minutes)
Race - TUDOR Championship (PC/Lites) 5:15 PM ET (45 minutes)
Race 1 - Lamborghini 6:30 PM ET (50 minutes)..

08/24/2014
Race - TUDOR Championship (PC/Lites) 10:45 AM ET (45 minutes)
Race 2 - Lamborghini 1:45 PM ET (50 minutes)
Race - TUDOR Championship (GTLM/GTD)



ENTRY LIST






MASERATI TROFEO
Round 4 in the Maserati Trofeo World Series, to be run at the Virginia Int’l Raceway,
marks Maserati's return to this US circuit.

The first driver to win at VIR, in 1957, was Carrol Shelby.
Driving a Maserati 450S, number 98, he managed to complete the 20 laps of a 65 mile race (approx 104 km) and beat the best sports racers of the era.
Shelby's fame peaked with his victory in the Le Mans 24 Hour.
Maserati's history in the US is studded with glory; this is testified by the 'Victory Lap' enjoyed by the Maserati 8CTF 'Boyle Special' last May at the famous Indianapolis Motor Speedway, just before the running of the 500.
This was a celebration of Wilbur Shaw's consecutive wins, in 1939 and 1940, in the 8CTF.
On the day, Johnny Rutherford, three times winner at the Indiana oval, had the honour of climbing behind the wheel. Another landmark was the Maserati 8CTF being registered by the Historical Vehicle Association of the United States as the first non-American production car to earn a permanent place in the annals of the United States Congress Library.


Now, VIR is ready to tell another story, that of the Maserati GranTurismo MC Trofeo that will appear in Virginia for the first time (in 2012 and 2013 the Maserati single-make series was held at Sonoma, California).
The third round in the series, at Silverstone, saw Mauro Calamia take the Trofeo Europa.

Now that reigning champion Renaud Kuppens is off the stage, the path is open for a new star to emerge.
On this form, the Swiss driver seems the most likely candidate for the title.
The man in second overall, Gabriele Gardel, is out of the running, as England was the final meet for him, while Italian Riccardo Ragazzi, after taking two wins at Silverstone, is in with a shout.
The same could also be said of Alan Simoni, should his luck turn and he become more consistent.





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      08-18-2014, 09:24 AM   #2
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and just as a reminder SRT Viper set fastest lap at this track
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      08-18-2014, 09:21 PM   #3
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Racer wrote a cool article around the VIR improvements and some track history

Virginia International Raceway will offer a level playing field for its first TUDOR United SportsCar Championship event, next weekend’s Oak Tree Grand Prix.
While the GRAND-AM Rolex Sports Car Series raced at the Danville, Va., circuit from 2002 through 2011, and the American Le Mans Series presented by Tequila Patrón competed there in 2012 and 2013, the 3.27-mile circuit was completed repaved and partially widened since last year’s race – among an extensive improvements program.
*
The track opened in 1957 and hosted major sports car events – including the first IMSA GT Series race in 1971 – before closing during an economic downturn in 1974. VIR reopened in 2000, with the repaved track maintaining its original 3.27-mile configuration.
*
“When it reopened it was basically the same as it was back then,” said Hurley Haywood, who won the IMSA GT races at VIR in 1971 and 1972 in addition to competing in the Rolex Series when the circuit reopened. “One of the complaints when they reopened was they didn’t make it any wider, which would have been nice.”
*
For 2014, Haywood’s concerns have been addressed. While the track maintains its original racing line, the track was widened by six feet at several locations to allow easier passing.
*
“I loved the way the track was before, but now it’s even better,” said Patrick Long, driver of the No. 912 Porsche North America Porsche 911 RSR and a DP winner at the circuit in 2006. “In the past there were a few sections that were a little too narrow for side-by-side battles. Now, they’ve widened the track in certain sections and changed the curb layout. I think it’s going to bring a whole new flow to the track.
*
“Based on how much the track management reached out to the pro drivers, I think it was well thought out and will be done really well.”
*
Other improvements included moving the start/finish line to just after the pit exit, allowing better viewing for spectators as well as positioning the finish on a wider portion of the track.
*
In addition, the north paddock was completely repaved, including both previously paved and unpaved portions to ensure an even and smooth surface.
*
“They’ve done so many good upgrades over the years, and a huge overtaking this winter redoing the paddock, resurfacing the whole track, lighting, changing the curving,” said SRT Motorsports Dodge Viper SRT GTS-R driver Jonathan Bomarito, who visited the track earlier this year for a pre-event media day. “They really did an awesome job taking the drivers’ feedback and teams’ feedback and fans, spectators, everybody … It’s one of our favorite places to come.”*
*
Jan Magnussen won at VIR in a DP with Max Angelelli for Wayne Taylor Racing in 2004 and finished third in ALMS GT in 2012 with Antonio Garcia for Corvette Racing.
*
“The track itself is different from anywhere else we go,” Magnussen said. “It’s very interesting and very old-school. To me, it’s incredible driving there and a very huge challenge. It’s a technical race track and super quick. The Corvette does well there because in the past – and we still do – the car performs well with good mechanical grip and aero.”
*
Leh Keen also has been a frequent VIR competitor over the years, winning in 2012 in the ALMS GTC class with Cooper MacNeil in a WeatherTech Porsche 911 GT3 Cup.
*
“When I won there in it was on the old pavement,” Keen said. “I’m really happy with the work they’ve done. VIR is just up the road from me in Atlanta, and they’ve done a lot since we last raced there. They’ve completely repaved it, and widened it, and that should make it faster. I think it will be about two or three seconds faster when we come back. Everyone will be real excited to see the new surface and all the other changes they’ve done.”
*
Echoing the feelings of many of the drivers, Long was impressed by the active role of VIR management in enhancing the facility.
*
“Connie (Nyholm, owner/CEO) and Kerrigan (Smith, director of track operations) are so committed, and the feeling from them is it’s a passion first and a business second,” Long said. “Those are the types of people we need in the sport. They’re racers. I’m looking forward to going back to VIR – it’s a great market for sports car racing.”

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      08-19-2014, 08:05 AM   #4
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For the Lambo ST, here's how the teams stand thus far in the season:

1) Change Racing - 97 points
2) Mitchum MotorSports - 85 points
3) GMG Racing -72 points
4) Rick Ware Racing - 62 points
5) Jota Corse -54 points
6) Musante Motorsport -50 points
7) DragonSpeed -22 points
8) Fall-Line Motorsport -14 points
9) AVID Motorsports -8 points
10) 3R Racing -4 points
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      08-19-2014, 08:36 AM   #5
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Here are USCC rankings so far this season:

DRIVERS

Pos Driver Car Points
1 Antonio Garcia Corvette 245
1 Jan MagnussenCorvette 245
2 Jonathan Bomarito Viper 237
2 Kuno Wittmer Viper 237
3 Dominik FarnbacherViper 224
3 Marc GoossensViper 224
4 Bill Auberlen BMW Z4 GTLM 221
4 Andy Priaulx BMW Z4 GTLM 221
5 John Edwards BMW Z4 GTLM 219
5 Dirk Müller BMW Z4 GTLM 219
6 Oliver Gavin Corvette 217
6 Tommy Milner Corvette 217
7 Michael Christensen Porsche 215
7 Patrick Long Porsche 215
8 Nick Tandy Porsche 209
9 Richard Lietz Porsche 188
10 Wolf Henzler Porsche 173
10 Bryan Seller Porsche 173


TEAMS
1 #3 Corvette Racing 245
2 #93 SRT Motorsports 237
3 #91 SRT Motorsports 224
4 #55 BMW Team RLL 221
5 #56 BMW Team RLL 219

6 #4 Corvette Racing 217
7 #912Porsche North America 215
8 #62 Risi Competizione 212
9 #911 Porsche North America 209
10 #17 Team Falken Tire 173


MANUFACTURER

1 Chevrolet 248
2 SRT 245
3 Porsche 244
4 BMW 242
5 Ferrari 229
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      08-19-2014, 09:34 AM   #6
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I'll be there all Sunday! Can't wait. Who else's coming?
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2015 YMB BMW M3 M-DCT - Build Thread -
[SOLD] 2010 Alpine White E90 M3 M-DCT
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      08-19-2014, 12:46 PM   #7
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BMW Team RLL – Oak Tree Grand Prix at VIR Preview


Woodcliff Lake, N.J. – Aug. 19, 2014 … Up next for BMW Team RLL is the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship round at Virginia International Raceway, in Alton, Virginia, on August 24th – Round 9 of the 11-race 2014 season. The weekend will feature Grand Touring cars in a 2.75-hour standalone race for GTLM and GTD competitors at the venerable 3.27-mile, 17-turn permanent road course.

BMW Team RLL has raced twice before at VIR, in the 2012 and 2013 American Le Mans Series seasons, with a best finish of fourth in both years. Recently, the circuit was repaved and widened in certain places to offer more opportunities for overtaking. That is sure to increase the competitiveness of the GTLM class that on most weekends qualifies its field within onesecond.

BMW Team RLL arrested its fall in the standings with a well-deserved second place finish by the No. 56 Z4 of John Edwards and Dirk Müller, in the last round at Road America on Aug. 10th. Bill Auberlen and Andy Priaulx stand fourth in driver points, while John Edwards and Dirk Müller have climbed to fifth. BMW Team RLL is currently fourth and fifth in Team standings. BMW remains fourth in Manufacturer points, but gained four points at Road America, closing to within two points of third.

“We have had reasonable pace at Virginia International Raceway in qualifying over the years, but haven’t been that successful in the races,” said Bobby Rahal, Team Principal.
“At VIR you are always, frankly, worried about all of the traffic. It’s a very twisty circuit with a long straightaway, which again, doesn’t work in our favor but there are fast esses and corners which do, so I think there is every reason to believe we can have a successful race.”

Bill Auberlen, driver, No. 55 Z4 GTLM – “VIR is an amazing circuit that should play to the handling of the Z4. I can’t wait to go flat out through those esses and feel the incredible down force and pinpoint handling. Andy and I are only three points out of third in driver points so one of our goals is to regain that position.”

Andy Priaulx, driver, No. 55 Z4 GTLM – “I am looking forward to VIR which will be another learning experience. It’s a new track for me and I’m told by many people in the sport it will require a lot of work. It’s not quite as long as Road America, as it is three and a quarter compared to four miles in length, but has a lot of turns and a lot of content. So far this year most of the tracks have been new to me but this hasn’t been an issue so I’m hoping that I can be up to speed as early as possible. We have some work to do in the championship and need to start scoring big points like we did at the beginning of the year.”

John Edwards, driver, No. 56 Z4 GTLM – “VIR is a great track, with flowing corners and plenty of elevation change. The track has all new pavement, which is supposed to have more grip, so we should be going quicker now than ever before. The format is a little different for this race as we won’t be on track with any prototypes, so we have a unique opportunity to win overall. Without any prototype traffic, I believe qualifying will be important this weekend, as there will be fewer variables to shake up the running order throughout the race. Dirk and I are coming off a strong weekend at Road America, where we scored pole and a second place finish, so we’ll be looking to stay strong again this weekend as the points are tight from third through seventh.”

Dirk Müller, driver, No. 56 Z4 GTLM – “If we can carry the momentum from our success at Road America to VIR we will be very happy. I’m looking forward to seeing the improvements that have been made to the circuit as it can only make that fantastic track even better.”

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      08-20-2014, 08:40 AM   #8
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Shots of race prep from the different series:







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      08-20-2014, 08:42 AM   #9
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bmw.com:

BMW Team RLL is aiming for more points.

Up next for BMW Team RLL is the United SportsCar Championship (USCC) event at Virginia International Raceway, in Alton, Virginia, on 24th August, which is round nine of the 2014 season.

The weekend will feature Grand Touring cars in a 2hour 45minute standalone race for GTLM and GTD competitors around the venerable 3.27-mile (5.26 kilometres), 17-turn permanent road course.

BMW Team RLL has raced twice before at VIR, in the 2012 and 2013 American Le Mans Series (ALMS) seasons, with a best finish of fourth in both years. Recently the circuit has be resurfaced and widened in certain places to offer more passing opportunities. That is sure to increase the competitiveness of the GTLM class that on most weekends qualifies its field within one second.

BMW Team RLL claimed a well-deserved second place finish by the number 56 BMW Z4 GTLM of John Edwards and Dirk Müller at the last round at Road America on 10th August. Bill Auberlen and Andy Priaulx stand fourth in the driver points and Edwards and Müller have climbed to fifth. BMW Team RLL is fourth and fifth in the GTLM Team standings. BMW is still fourth in Manufacturer points, but gained four points at Road America to now be only two points from third.
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      08-21-2014, 07:40 AM   #10
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Corvette Racing has the opportunity to clinch the championship this weekend with a win...

ANTONIO GARCIA, NO. 3 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R
“You need to have good braking and traction performance at VIR. The corners do not have as long a radius (as Road America) which means it comes down to how long you can roll through the corners and stay brave enough to keep it on track. VIR is one of those tracks where you don’t want to go off. All the combinations and fast sections are very challenging. You are constantly cornering and always turning. Managing traffic is still important if you have the fastest cars or not. You can be stuck behind someone and not have a way to get around for quite awhile. The GT Daytona cars are almost as fast as us on a straight so it may be a matter of them passing us before the braking zone.”

JAN MAGNUSSEN, NO. 3 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R
“The track itself is different from anywhere else we go. It’s very interesting and very old school. To me, it’s incredible driving there and a very huge challenge. It’s a technical race track and super quick. The Corvette does well there because in the past – and we still do – because the car performs well with good mechanical grip and with aero.”

OLIVER GAVIN, NO. 4 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R
“It can be a very technical track and a very fast track. The first few corners are technical in nature, then you come up the hill into some very fast sweepers. That requites high-speed balance and making sure your car has good downforce. Then you go to the Oak Tree Corner, which is the slowest turn on the track before going down a very, very long straight. So you’re trying to strike that balance of drag over downforce. It’s always that balancing act. It’s a huge challenge and that’s what everyone relishes when they go to a track. It’s a tough one to get right. If it wasn’t, it wouldn’t be as much fun.”

TOMMY MILNER, NO. 4 CHEVROLET CORVETTE C7.R
“It’s going to be great going back to VIR. They’ve made a bunch of changes this year to a number of places. They’ve repaved the surface and have added some runoff curbing and some room for runoff in some important corners. It was always a challenge there to be on the right line or you risked having some big moments. I don’t think they’ve taken any of the challenge away; they’ve made it a little nicer for us on the track for us drivers with multiple classes where you need that extra six inches of road to keep close to your competitors. I’m excited to see how that works.”
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      08-21-2014, 10:59 AM   #11
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SRT pre-race report:
http://www.racer.com/more/press-room...re-race-report
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      08-21-2014, 12:49 PM   #12
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Garage List
A few Lamborghini Super Trofeo cars were practicing at VIR at the last Club Member day. Watch this video starting from the 3:12 mark.

I'll be in attendance Sunday. Don't have my 2015 M3 yet, so nothing to show off.

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      08-21-2014, 01:00 PM   #13
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The Maserati Trofeo reaches the United States for Round 4

Maserati.com
http://www.maserati.com/maserati/en/...singSpeed.html

Modena (I), 20 August 2014*–*The engines on the Maserati GranTurismo MC Trofeos will come alive again four Round 4, this season’s first event outside Europe. This time round, the stage will be the USA and Virginia International Raceway, with the races co-inciding with the Tudor United SportsCar Championship. The Maserati Trofeo World Series was run in the US in 2012 and 2013 but at the California circuit of Sonoma.

For Maserati, the next round marks a return to the track, near Danville, at which*Carrol Shelby*drove his No.98 Maserati 450S to victory in 1957. He managed to complete 20 laps over a race distance of around 104km, beating off the best competition of the era.

Last time out in the 2014 Maserati Trofeo, held at Silverstone,*Mauro Calamia*claimed the season’s first title: the Trofeo Europa. Now that reigning champion*Renaud Kuppens*has pulled out, the search is on for a successor with Calamia looking most likely. Second overall is Gabriele Gardel but he can be ruled out as his season ended at the last round. One driver who will be feeling confident is Italian*Riccardo Ragazzi*and, if his luck turns, so will*Alan Simoni. With things now on a global stage, the Europeans will be up against ten or so North Americans in the triple challenge that will see two 30’ sprints and a 60’ endurance race held.

(follow the link above for the rest of the release)

.






TRG-AMR’s Aston Martin Vantage GT3 had a huge crash at the last track, did you see it?
That was what? A week ago? They flew in a chassis and are rebuilding the car for this weekend.

It always makes me wonder how my techs can take so damn long when these guys can rebuild and entire car in less than a week.

You can read about the AMR rebuild here: http://sportscar365.com/imsa/tusc/tr...build-for-vir/

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      08-21-2014, 04:27 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by schmitzna View Post
A few Lamborghini Super Trofeo cars were practicing at VIR at the last Club Member day. Watch this video starting from the 3:12 mark.

I'll be in attendance Sunday. Don't have my 2015 M3 yet, so nothing to show off.

Damn did you see how that Lambo just flew by? fassst
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      08-21-2014, 04:34 PM   #15
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CAN BMW MAKE IT FIVE MANUFACTURERS, FIVE WINNERS IN GTLM?
BMW TEAM RLL LOOKS TO FOLLOW PORSCHE, CORVETTE, DODGE VIPER SRT AND FERRARI TO TOP OF PODIUM


The GT Le Mans (GTLM) class of the TUDOR United SportsCar Championship is living up to its reputation as having the best GT competition on the planet.

After eight races, four of the five manufacturers competing in the class have won races – with Porsche, Corvette, Dodge Viper SRT and Ferrari all winning in 2014.

- Read the rest here: http://www.imsa.com/articles/can-bmw...che=1398535204
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      08-21-2014, 04:59 PM   #16
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A bunch of them are lapping under 1:56..not too shabby



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      08-21-2014, 05:03 PM   #17
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      08-22-2014, 07:09 AM   #18
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      08-23-2014, 01:59 PM   #19
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      08-23-2014, 02:02 PM   #20
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      08-23-2014, 02:04 PM   #21
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BMW Team RLL Qualifies 2nd and 4th at Virginia International Raceway: Auberlen P2, Müller P4



Woodcliff Lake, N.J. – Aug. 23, 2014 … Bill Auberlen equaled his season’s-best qualifying effort today at Virginia International Raceway, driving the No. 55 BMW Team RLL Z4 to the outside front row starting position for tomorrow’s 2.75-hour TUDOR United SportsCar Championship Oak Tree Grand Prix. His lap of 1:44.053 minutes around the 3.27-mile, 17-turn VIR circuit was only .256 seconds behind the pole-sitting Ferrari. The entire class was separated by only 1.015 seconds. Auberlen and co-driver Andy Priaulx currently stand fourth in GTLM driver points.

Dirk Müller qualified the No. 56 BMW Z4 in the fourth position, only .023 seconds behind Auberlen, with a*time of 1:44.076 minutes. Müller and co-driver John Edwards, pole winner at the last round in Road America, currently stand fifth in GTLM driver*points.

“This is a great qualifying result,” said Jay O’Connell, RLL VP Technology. “We couldn’t quite get the pole like last year, but getting second and fourth is great. If you looked at the timesheet, a tenth of a second was going to cost us five places, so it is a tight field. Obviously Ferrari is out front after doing a really good job, but I am proud of Bill and Dirk for their drives today. Without the prototypes tomorrow, we are starting on the front row and there is no one ahead of us, so we can have a nice clean start, a really good race, and I am looking forward to a fun time tomorrow.”

Bill Auberlen, driver No. 55 Z4 GTLM – (2nd) – “We have done a lot of work here. We have tried different tires, different set-ups, all kinds of stuff — and we’ve earned P2 in a field separated by a mere second. This has all the ingredients for a great race. BMW is right at the front. To actually see daylight ahead of us from the front row will make it that much better racing into turn one tomorrow.”

Dirk Müller, driver No. 56 Z4 GTLM – (4th) – “I am really happy as I wasn’t expecting I could do that time. Twenty-three thousandths of a second to P2 and I am P4 is absolutely fantastic. I love racing in this GTLM class. Our focus was totally on the race and not a single second on qualifying. As a racer some*times that is tough because you want to be on pole all the time, but our heads are on the race and our car is going to be a rocket.”




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      08-23-2014, 02:21 PM   #22
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