Hockenheim (DE). BMW Motorsport has capped its comeback season in the DTM in sensational style with Bruno Spengler (CA) winning the drivers’ title, BMW Team Schnitzer triumphing in the team competition and BMW finishing on top of Manufacturers’ Championship.
Dirk Werner (DE, 5th), Andy Priaulx (GB, 7th) and Joey Hand (US, 8th) all produced fine performances to ensure five BMW drivers finished in the points for the first time this year.
Martin Tomczyk (DE) was 14th. Read here what BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt, the BMW team principals and the six drivers had to say after winning the three titles at the season finale.
Jens Marquardt (BMW Motorsport Director): “The finale in Hockenheim was the crowning moment in what has been a perfect season for us.
With his fourth win of the season, Bruno Spengler actually managed to win the Drivers’ title in BMW’s first year back in the DTM for 20 years.
That is a sensational success, on which on behalf of BMW Motorsport I would like to congratulate Bruno and, of course, BMW Team Schnitzer.
The fact Charly Lamm’s crew also finished top of the team competition and BMW won the Manufacturers’ Championship is the icing on the cake. BMW Team Schnitzer was also behind our last DTM title back in 1989.
It is an absolutely unbelievable story that Charly and his boys are back on top almost a quarter of a century later. However, BMW Team RBM and BMW Team RMG also have every reason to be happy with this season.
Together, the three teams have achieved five wins, five pole positions and 12 podiums. All six of our drivers have scored points in 2012 and have left their mark on the season on more than one occasion.
To be honest: we would not have dared to dream of a season like this. We have gone up against two ambitious and unbelievably strong opponents with a wealth of DTM experience.
Our goal for the opening year was to learn and become competitive as soon as possible.
That we have achieved far more than this and won three titles is testimony to the outstanding job done by the whole team – whether at BMW Motorsport in Munich, among our three teams, or in the cockpit by our drivers.
A huge thank you to our partners, who have embraced the DTM adventure with us and given us fantastic support. I would obviously also like to thank the ITR and our competition at Audi and Mercedes-Benz.
We have been made to feel very welcome in this series. Together we have treated the fans to ten exciting races and maximum tension right down to the final race.
That just goes to show the concept of the new DTM has been a complete success. However, the biggest winners this year are the fans. It will take a while to realise exactly what has happened here in Hockenheim on this Sunday.
The entire team has certainly earned a big party today. We can all be very proud of the 2012 season. We have all written another chapter in motorsport history.”
Charly Lamm (Team Principal, BMW Team Schnitzer): “I am speechless. This is a very big moment in the motorsport history of BMW Team Schnitzer.
To win the title in a final race like that – in such a close battle that came down to Bruno’s nerves and perfect pit stops – fills me with an incredible amount of pride. It still hasn’t sunk in what just happened here.”
Bart Mampaey (Team Principal, BMW Team RBM): “What a fantastic result. I am happy for Bruno, for BMW for winning the manufacturers' championship and, of course, for BMW Team Schnitzer.
I am also happy for BMW Team RBM because in the end I think we played an important role in the way this race unfolded. Unfortunately we didn't have the top pace to stay up front.
It was very close in the pit stop with Gary (Paffett) but it was fair. I am happy with Augusto's podium and also with Andy's seventh from 13th on the grid. I am now looking forwards to the winter and next season.”
Stefan Reinhold (Team Principal, BMW Team RMG): “We were all able to reap the rewards of the work we have put in all year long. BMW sent the best car out onto the track this season. This title belongs to us all.
The incidents in the second half of the season have seen our team drop out of the race for the title, and we saw again today we still have some work to do before next season – particularly on our pit stops.
Generally speaking, however, I would like to congratulate the team on our first season in the DTM. My team did a great job. I would obviously also like to congratulate Bruno Spengler, BMW Team Schnitzer and BMW Motorsport.”
Bruno Spengler (car number 7, BMW Team Schnitzer, 1st): “I can hardly believe we have won the title with BMW in our first year back in the DTM.
Congratulations to my rival Gary Paffett, who performed brilliantly throughout the entire season and put up a fair fight. He would also have been a worthy champion. He is a great sportsman.
He put me under a lot of pressure in the final race today. I spent a lot of time looking in the rear-view mirror and he just kept getting closer. However, I was able to maintain my pace and close the race out.
My pulse was really racing. Thank you to BMW Team Schnitzer. My team did a great job all season. Once again, everything went exactly to plan today. In a race, in which we were under extreme pressure, the team did another amazing job on the pit stops.
You never win on your own – only as part of a team. I am totally confused and have no idea how I should be feeling.
Standing on the top step of the podium, raising the trophy to the sky and seeing all the many fans cheering for me is an amazing experience. I have waited for this for so many years. It is simply sensational.”
Augusto Farfus (car number 16, BMW Team RBM, 3rd): “Congratulations to Bruno Spengler on winning the title. BMW’s return to the DTM has been awesome. Having five cars in the top ten in today’s race was crucial to winning the Manufacturers’ title.
And to top it all off I was the best DTM rookie. Everything is perfect today. Ending the season on the podium is just fantastic.”
Dirk Werner (car number 8, BMW Team Schnitzer, 5th): “What happened today is simply unbelievable. It feels great to be part of this magnificent project.
The whole year has just been a dream for me. I can hardly believe my team-mate Bruno Spengler has been crowned champion in BMW’s first year back in the DTM.
I am particularly proud to have played a role in BMW Team Schnitzer winning the team competition. We made motorsport history today. I will never forget this day.”
Andy Priaulx (car number 15, BMW Team RBM, 7th): “I have to say well done to Bruno and to BMW Motorsport for the fantastic job they have done.
I am proud to be a part of this amazing programme. As for me, I was confident of a good race after a great warm-up. I had a great start, but a really awkward first lap. I am happy to have finished in one piece. The car was very good.”
Joey Hand (car number 2, BMW Team RMG, 8th): “Well done Bruno and everyone at BMW Motorsport. This was the way I wanted my season to end. I equalled my best qualifying session and then had my best finish.
In the race it was the best car I have had this year. Unfortunately we had something happen on the first pit stop which cost us a lot of time.
There was also a little issue in the second pit stop, which cost more time, then we were just in traffic and it is tough to race past those guys. This new team has stayed tough and bounced back from all our problems.
I am pretty proud of what we have done this year.”
Martin Tomczyk (car number 1, BMW Team RMG, 14th): “Congratulations to Bruno, BMW Team Schnitzer and everyone at BMW Motorsport. I know exactly how Bruno is feeling now.
It is the best feeling you can have as a racing driver. To win the title with BMW in the very first year is simply sensational. I am pleased my start number ‘1’ will remain in the BMW family.
Unfortunately my own season has been rather mediocre. The second half of the season, particularly with the four retirements, was very depressing. However, that is not important today.”