It is almost a year since the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup (ILMC) made its debut at the “Silverstone Circuit” (GB) – now BMW Motorsport returns to this iconic circuit for the fifth round of the 2011 season. So far this year, the BMW M3 GT has finished on the podium in the LM GTE class at every ILMC race. In Sebring (US), it even achieved a one-two. BMW Team Schnitzer is charged with continuing this run of success at the 5.901-kilometre circuit in Northamptonshire.
Augusto Farfus (BR) and Jörg Müller (DE) will contest the six-hour race on Sunday, which forms part of the Le Mans Series, in the no. 55 BMW M3 GT. Andy Priaulx (GB) and Uwe Alzen (DE) will alternate behind the wheel of car number 56. This is Priaulx’s first race since his successful thyroid operation in June.
BMW is well positioned in both the manufacturers’ and team classifications going into the race at Silverstone. In the manufacturers’ standings the brand lies second on 87 points behind Ferrari (98). The gap between BMW Motorsport and the leading AF Corse team in the LM GTE Pro team classification is just six points (68:62).
The race in Great Britain also sees the ILMC bid farewell to Europe. On 1st October BMW Team RLL will continue the fight for points at the “Petit Le Mans” in Road Atlanta (US), which forms part of the American Le Mans Series. The finale of the ILMC season takes place on 13th November in Zhuhai (CN).
Charly Lamm (Team Manager):“That was a long break from racing. After the first half of the year, which was very intensive for us, we used the opportunity to recharge our batteries so that we can take as much momentum into the crucial phase of the ILMC as possible. We completed tyre tests with Dunlop – with very promising results. The BMW M3 GT has huge potential, which we are looking to convert into good results in the coming races. We are hoping to take the first step in this direction in Silverstone.”
Augusto Farfus (Car number 55):“Silverstone concludes a long break without racing - and it's about time to get started again. It will be exciting to see what the balance of power will be like in Silverstone, as I'm convinced that no single team in the ILMC has been lazy over the past weeks, but have tried to find significant improvements to their cars.”
Jörg Müller (Car number 55): “For various reasons, we have not always been able to achieve the best possible result at the previous ILMC races in Europe. Despite this, we are still in a very promising position in the championship. It goes without saying that we are hungry for another good result in Silverstone.”
Andy Priaulx (Car number 56):“I cannot wait for my first race since the Le Mans 24 Hours. I have enjoyed being back behind the wheel again doing the DTM testing and I am now back to full fitness after the operation. However, racing is always what a driver wants to do and it is a very different matter. I have missed the competitive side of the sport in these last three months and now I can’t wait to get back in the BMW M3 GT at Silverstone. I can think of no better place to start racing again than my home event at one of my favourite tracks.”
Uwe Alzen (Car number 56):“Silverstone is pure tradition. The circuit is also very challenging following the modifications. I have really missed racing in the BMW M3 GT. It is, and always will be, a fantastic car. Our goal is to score as many points as possible and to put ourselves in a good position ahead of Road Atlanta and Zhuhai.”