Munich/Going. American Boris Said has won the historic BMW Sports Trophy for the most successful BMW non-works racing driver in the 2001 season. A team-mate of Hans-Joachim Stuck, he was presented with the award at the BMW Motorsport Party held last Saturday in Going (A).
"BMW's greatest motorsport successes are down to factory involvements," said BMW Motorsport Director Gerhard Berger, "but most successes are down to independent competitors. These ambitious drivers who ride to victory in our cars without a factory contract are valuable ambassadors of the BMW brand on the world's racing circuits." BMW has been awarding the Sports Trophy for more than three and a half decades with the aim of encouraging such drivers. It is worth a total of DM 456,000, distributed among 20 drivers.
2001 winner Boris Said (39) is frequently seen contesting several race series simultaneously, something he has been doing for a quarter of a century now. The reward for his efforts amounts to DM 70,000. Among his successful races in the 2001 season were those with the new BMW M3 GTR in the American Le Mans Series (ALMS). Born in New York and now a resident of California, Said took fifth place in the GT class of the ALMS and picked up 357 points in the coefficient system which determines the winner of the BMW Sports Trophy.
Said began his motor racing career at the age of 12 when he took up Motocross. By the time he was 16 he was already celebrating his first car racing victories. In 1996 he joined BMW Team PTG. His last BMW victory to date was on 6 October 2001 when, sharing a BMW M3 GTR with Stuck and Bill Auberlen, he triumphed in the GT class of the 1000-mile 'Petit Le Mans' at Road Atlanta.
Second place in the BMW Sports Trophy listings went to Sandor van Es with 353 points. The 31-year-old from Arnheim (NL) won the 2001 Dutch Touring Car Championship in a BMW 320i DTC.
Third place (332 points) was taken by his compatriot Peter Kox (37). Kox claimed the title in the European Touring Car Championship with a BMW 320i similarly prepared in close adherence to production trim according to the Super Production Regulations. <pre> All placings in the BMW Sports Trophy 2001:
Driver Car Results 1. Boris Said (USA) BMW M3 GTR 5th place GT class American Le Mans Series 2. Sandor van Es (NL) BMW 320i DTC 1st place Dutch Touring Car Championship 3. Peter Kox (NL) BMW 320i SPC 1st place European Touring Car Championship (SPC) 4. Duncan Huisman (NL) BMW 320i SPC 2nd place European Touring Car Championship (SPC) 5. Tom Coronel (NL) BMW 320i DTC 5th place Dutch Touring Car Championship 6. Gianluca de Lorenzi (MCO) BMW 320i STC 7th place European Touring Car Championship (STC) 7. Norman Simon (DE) BMW 320i SPC 4th place European Touring Car Championship (SPC) 8. Cor Euser (NL) BMW 320i DTC 3rd place Dutch Touring Car Championship 9. Gianni Morbidelli (ITA) BMW 320i SPC 5th place European Touring Car Championship (SPC) 10. Stefano Valli (ITA) BMW M3 Gr. N 1st place Class 1 Italian Touring Car Championship 11. Markus Gedlich (DE) BMW 320i DTC 1st place German Touring Car Challenge (DTC) 12. Mikhail Ukhov (RU) BMW 320i DTC 2nd place Russian Touring Car Championship 13. Yvan Lebon (FRA) BMW 320i STC 1st place ST Class French Super Touring Car Championship 14. Alessandro Bernasconi (ITA) BMW 320i Gr.N 1st place Class 2 Italian Touring Car Championship 15. Per-Gunnar Andersson (SE) BMW 320i SPC 7th place European Touring Car Championship (SPC) 16. Paolo Ruberti (ITA) BMW 320i SPC 6th place European Touring Car Championship (SPC) 17. Claudia Hürtgen (DE) BMW 320i DTCBMW M3 GTR (E36) 10th place German Touring Car Challenge (DTC), Endurance Trophy, Nürburgring 18. Roland Wanek (DE) BMW M3 Gr. N European Hill Climb Championship 19. Thomas Winkelhock (DE) BMW 320i DTC 5th place German Touring Car Challenge 20. Walter Meloni (ITA) BMW 320i Gr.N Italian Touring Car Championship </pre> Other successes by non-works drivers in the 2001 season:
- Team Carly Motors won the team classification in the European Touring Car Championship with their near-production BMW 320i models prepared in compliance with the Super Production Regulations.
- Niko Pulic of Croatia won the European Hill Climb Championship for Touring Cars in a BMW M3 Group A.
- Italian Franz Tschager took the title in the European Hill Climb Championship for Sports Cars with an Osella BMW.
- Eric Bruynoghe and Dimitri Cuyvers, both from Belgium, won the GTB class in the Belgian Championship with a BMW Z3.
- Georg Severich (D) and Luc Pensis (B) drove a BMW 320i prepared according to the Super Touring Car Regulations and won the three-litre Touring Car class of the Belgian Championship.
- Frenchman Jean Philippe Deyraut in a BMW M3 won the Special Car category in the French Super Touring Car Championship.
- Herbert Stenger (D) won the FIA International Hill Climb Challenge Region West and the International German Hill Climb Championship in a Stenger BMW.
- Otokar Krámský of the Czech Republic became Czech Hill Climb Champion in a BMW M3 Group A.
- Dagmar Suster (SI) in a BMW M3 Group N claimed victory in the Slovenian Road Racing Championship.
Bonus payments to continue for successful DTC customer teams
This season, as last year, BMW will be awarding bonus payments to successful customer teams. The team that wins the title in the 2002 German Touring Car Challenge with a BMW 320i DTC will once again receive spare parts vouchers to the value of 12,500 euros per fielded car or a maximum of 25,000 euros per team.
For the 2001 season just past, DTC winner Markus Gedlich (Team Schubert Motors) claimed the bonus.
Fellow BMW-badged contenders also benefit from overall victory by a BMW driver, since all other BMW customer teams regularly appearing in the series - i.e. in at least eight races - receive spare parts vouchers worth 5,000 euros per car or a maximum of 10,000 euros per team.
In order to improve preparations for the season, BMW will be organizing two days of testing for all customer teams. One will take place in advance of the first race, while the second is scheduled for a later stage in the season. During the two test days, BMW engineers will be in attendance to assist teams.