BMW Team RLL Qualifies Fourth and Fifth at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca.
Woodcliff Lake, N.J. – Nov 1, 2020 . . . BMW Team RLL will start fourth and fifth in this afternoon’s Hyundai Monterey Sports Car Championship race, at WeatherTech Raceway Laguna Seca, in Monterey, Calif., the penultimate round of the 2020 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.
Bruno Spengler, driving the No. 25 MOTUL BMW M8 GTE, qualified in the fourth starting position with a 1:22.054-miniute lap around the classic Laguna Seca circuit. He will co-drive with Connor De Phillippi. Jesse Krohn, last year’s polesitter at this race, qualified the No. 24 MOTUL BMW M8 GTE, he will co-drive with John Edwards, in the fifth starting position with a 1:22.120-minute lap. The top-five GTLM class qualifiers were all within .637 seconds of the polesitting Corvette C8.R.
With two victories, two second place and five third place finishes so far this year, BMW remains a strong second in GTLM class manufacturer points standings. John Edwards and Jesse Krohn, co-drivers of the No. 24 MOTUL BMW M8 GTE, stand third in driver points with No. 25 MOTUL BMW M8 GTE co-drivers Connor De Phillippi and Bruno Spengler standing fourth.
Historically, Laguna Seca has been a strong circuit for BMW, from its very first season of IMSA competition in 1975 with a victory by Hans Stuck in a 3.0 BMW CSL to recent BMW Team RLL wins in 2015, 2017 and 2018. Last season, Edwards and Krohn shared a runner-up finish after starting from the pole position in the No. 24 BMW M8 GTE.
Robby Foley, co-driving the No. 96 Turner Motorsport BMW M6 GT3 with Bill Auberlen, will start today’s race from the outside of the 13-car GTD class front row following a qualifying lap of 1:24.140-minutes. The duo is looking for their third GTD class victory of the 2020 season. Their most recent win, at the Charlotte Motor Speedway three weeks ago, was Auberlen’s 62nd IMSA victory – the most in IMSA history.
The two-hour-and-forty-minute race is scheduled to take the green flag at 1:05 p.m. local time this afternoon. The race will be broadcast on NBCSN from 6:30 – 9:30 p.m. ET this evening. Follow us on Twitter @BMWUSARacing for news from the pit box and get live scoring and in-car camera views at IMSA.com.
Bruno Spengler, driver No. 25 BMW M8 GTE (P4): “Overall, today’s qualifying performance was not the most satisfying, but the team made some particularly good improvements for the race. Great work from them. I believe we’ll be able to fight for a podium finish this afternoon.”
Jesse Krohn, driver No. 24 BMW M8 GTE (P5): “Our competition seems to have a very good one-lap pace while we are working toward good stint pace. After scoring the pole here last year it is a bit disappointing to start two rows back, but we have a good BMW for the race.”
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 Rolls-Royce Motor Cars; Designworks, a strategic design consultancy based in California; technology offices in Silicon Valley and Chicago, and various other operations throughout the country. BMW Manufacturing Co., LLC in South Carolina is the BMW Group global center of competence for BMW X models and manufactures the X3, X4, X5, X6 and X7 Sports Activity Vehicles. The BMW Group sales organization is represented in the U.S. through networks of 349 BMW passenger car and BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 145 BMW motorcycle retailers, 117 MINI passenger car dealers, and 38 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 almost three decades. Prior to the start of their 29th season of competition in 2020, the team had compiled 51 victories, 62 poles, 189 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. Since 2014, BMW Team RLL has competed in the GTLM class of the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship with a two-car program and has brought their total to 21 wins – including the 2019 and 2020 Rolex 24 At Daytona endurance races, 28 poles and 79 podium finishes as well as a second-place finish in the Manufacturer, Team and Driver championships in 2015 and 2017.
Journalist note: Information about BMW Group and its products in the USA is available to journalists on-line at www.bmwgroupusanews.com and www.press.bmwna.com.