BMW will be taking on the “Green Hell” once again in 2015: On 28th March, the first race in the VLN Endurance Championship opens the racing season on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife (DE). As in previous years, BMW Sports Trophy Team Schubert and BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS, each with two works-supported BMW Z4 GT3s, will compete on the most difficult track in the world.
“We’re convinced that with BMW Sports Trophy Team Schubert and BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS, as well as our outstanding driver line-up, we are in an excellent position for the endurance season on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife,” said BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt. “Our team has a mix of old-hands and young talent, who all have experience of the Nordschleife, are familiar with GT racing and are fast even in difficult conditions. With this combination we are ready for success in the special challenges that the Nordschleife has in store once again in 2015.”
The two BMW teams will start the VLN season with some of the most experienced drivers on the Nordschleife. This track is like a second home to Lucas Luhr (DE), Jörg Müller (DE), Dirk Müller (DE), Dirk Werner (DE), Dirk Adorf (DE) and Claudia Hürtgen (DE). They have all celebrated countless victories there. The other drivers – Jens Klingmann (DE), Markus Palttala (FI), winner of the 2014 BMW Sports Trophy, Alexander Sims (GB), Dominik Baumann (AT) and Nick Catsburg (NL) – also have a vast experience of GT racing and the Nordschleife. Richard Westbrook (GB), who has been an established name in international GT racing for many years, makes his debut in the BMW Z4 GT3.
Also, four BMW DTM drivers, notably reigning champion Marco Wittmann (DE), are in action for the VLN and the qualifying races. Augusto Farfus (BR) celebrated overall victory in the 24-hour race with BMW Motorsport in 2010, Maxime Martin (BE) won the heart of fans with strong performances in the Eifel in the past. Martin Tomczyk (DE) and Wittmann have also contested many successful races on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife and are looking to add to their success rate on this track.
BMW Sports Trophy Team Schubert and BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS are using the first two VLN races (28th March/25th April) and the qualifying race for the 24 Hours Nürburgring (12th April) to prepare for the endurance classic on 16th/17th May. The selection of drivers used for the preparatory races will also provide the drivers who will take the wheel of the two BMW Z4 GT3s in the 24-hour race.
The first VLN race also gets the new season underway for the participants in the BMW M235i Racing Cup class, which will once again be held as part of the VLN Endurance Championship. After its successful debut last year, when up to 15 cars battled for points and wins, the number of participants for the ten rounds will be even higher in 2015.