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With a field stacked full of Porsches and Audis, it was BMW that took the top spot at the legendary Nürburgring 24 Hour race in the No. 25 BMW M3 GT2. Drivers Jörg Müller, Augusto Farfus, Uwe Alzen and Pedro Lamy managed 154 laps on the Green Hell to claim BMW’s 19th victory at the grueling endurance competition.
“That was a fantastic return for us at the 24-hour race here on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife. This win reminds me of the triumph in Le Mans in 1999. I have never known excitement like I experienced today,” said BMW Director of Motorsport Mario Theissen. “After some of our direct rivals fell by the wayside, our victory was also hanging by a thread. At about 12.00 the winning car developed a gearbox problem, resulting in the loss of one gear. Shortly after 13.00 other gears gradually gave up. It was a masterful performance how Jörg Müller and Uwe Alzen brought the car home in first place in this crucial phase. The tension was enormous for all of us, so the relief was all the greater when the car crossed the finish line. I must say a big thank you to every single member of the team. Everyone worked perfectly together. Thanks also to our loyal fans, who have taken us to their hearts after a five-year break and given us such great support.”
Joining BMW on the podium was the Team Farnbacher Ferrari F430 GTC piloted by Dominik Farnbacher, Allan Simonsen and Leh Keen. And after dominating the first two rows of the grid in qualifying, Audi managed third place in the R8 LMS driven by Dennis Rostek, Luca Ludwig, Marc Bronzel and Markus Winkelhock.
As for the Porsches, the favored Manthey Racing car driven by Timo Bernhard, Marc Lieb, Romain Dumas and Marcel Tiemann retired early when another car spun into them, while the GT3 R Hybrid put on an impressive performance using its fuel economy advantage to pit less often. Unfortunately the hybrid race car broke while in the lead with just under two hours to go.
[Source: BMW Motorsport]