13.01.2020 | BMW Global Press
BMW Junior Team starts training camp at Formula Medicine – Thrilling season opener in BMW sim racing.
Whether in the DTM, the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, the ABB FIA Formula E Championship, or countless other championships: Week after week BMW teams and drivers around the world do battle for points, victories and titles. Away from the track too, members of the large BMW Motorsport family around the world are also creating headlines. The “BMW Motorsport News” allows us to regularly summarise all the action for you in a compact and informative manner. This way, you are always up to speed.
BMW Junior Team: Training camp at Formula Medicine gets underway.
The new BMW Junior Team started preparing for the coming season last week. Dan Harper (GBR), Max Hesse (GER) and Neil Verhagen (USA) moved into a shared house in Viareggio (ITA) and started their intensive training camp at Formula Medicine. Under the guidance of Dr. Riccardo Ceccarelli (ITA) the Juniors will undergo an intensive physical and mental programme until March which will prepare them for their race appearances at the Nürburgring-Nordschleife (GER). Medical tests and initial fitness and mental training units were the order of the day right from the start. “The schedule for the first few days was really tough, but was a lot of fun,” said Harper. Verhagen added: “I have been to Formula Medicine once before, but now I’m looking forward to being able to spend such a long period of time working intensively on my physical and mental fitness.” In addition to the training, Hesse is also looking forward to the shared living experience with his colleagues: “We got to know each other at the kick-off event in Munich and on our journey together to Viareggio, and we get on really well. I think that we will have a lot of fun in addition to the hard work.” Teamwork is a key factor in the concept of the new BMW Junior Team. “On one hand, the fact that there are three of them will help them to motivate and help each other during the training,” said Ceccarelli. “On the other hand, you have to remember that the lads will be away from home for several months at the age of 18 and 19. No doubt it will help that they are in a group and not left to fend for themselves.” BMW works drivers Philipp Eng (AUT) and Dirk Adorf (GER) as well as Jochen Neerpasch (GER) as mentors of the Juniors were also on site in Viareggio. Neerpasch, who founded the legendary first BMW Junior Team in 1977, was impressed by the opportunities offered by Formula Medicine: “In 1977 we were the first to start training racing drivers physically at a professional level. Now to see at what an incredibly high scientific level mental training is offered is absolutely fantastic. I am sure that the Juniors will learn a great deal here.” After the training camp in Italy, the BMW Junior Team will move into a shared apartment close to the Nürburgring.
BMW 120 at Daytona: Thrilling season opener in BMW sim racing.
The 2020 sim racing season kicked off for BMW Motorsport with the first BMW 120 event of the year at Daytona (USA). Overall, almost 600 drivers and 300 teams competed in the two-hour race on the online platform iRacing in the BMW M8 GTE. After 70 laps, victory went to Redline GT, with drivers Maximilian Wenig and Maximilian Benecke (both GER). Behind them in second place were their team-mates Jonas Wallmeier and Gianni Vecchio (both GER). The two Germans Laurin Heinrich and Alexander Voß of Williams Esports completed the podium. In total, the top three teams received a cash prize of 4,200 US dollars. After the victory, Benecke said: “I would say that the year has got off to a great start for us. We’re new to the Redline team, which makes this result even better. Thanks go to BMW for hosting these events again in 2020. I’m really pleased with this race.” Wenig said: “We couldn’t have wished for a better start to the new decade. I’m already really looking forward to attending the BMW end of season review in Munich. You can see how much passion they have for sim racing.” Benecke and Wenig won the ‘BMW 120 at Road Atlanta’ last year as well. BMW works drivers Philipp Eng (AUT) and Nick Catsburg (NED) also competed in the BMW M8 GTE with BMW Team CATENG finishing in 13th place.
24h Dubai: Race aborted due to heavy rain.
Only around seven hours of the 24-hour race in Dubai (UAE) were completed after heavy rain started at 22:17 local time, making it impossible to continue the season opener of the 24H SERIES. In the TCX and TC classes, the ACP and Avia Sorg Rennsport teams, with their BMW M240i Racings, were classified as winners. A total of seven BMW M4 GT4s raced in the GT4 category. Both of Century Motorsport’s four-driver teams finished in the top three: the #430 BMW M4 GT4 finished second in class while car number #429 finished in third place.
Asian Le Mans Series: Difficult weekend for Astro Veloce Motorsports.
The Asian Le Mans Series headed to ‘The Bend Motorsport Park’ in southern Australia at the weekend. Starting the race from third on the grid, Jens Klingmann (GER), Max Wiser (BRA) and Peiwen Qi (CHN) finished fifth in the GT class with the #17 BMW M6 GT3. The #16 sister car retired from the race after an incident. The next round of the Asian Le Mans Series will be held on 15th February at Sepang (MAS).