2006 World Final preview

Formula BMW as the steppingstone for a successful motorsports career. Munich - The DELL Formula BMW World Final, held from November 24 to 26, 2006 in Valencia, will feature 37 talented young drivers with two distinct aims in site. Not only will...

Formula BMW as the steppingstone for a successful motorsports career.

Munich - The DELL Formula BMW World Final, held from November 24 to 26, 2006 in Valencia, will feature 37 talented young drivers with two distinct aims in site. Not only will they be competing for the coveted winner's prize, a test drive with the BMW Sauber F1 Team, but the youngsters will also have the opportunity to demonstrate their skills to the international motor racing experts. The fact they receive the necessary education for a successful career in the four international Formula BMW series in Germany, Great Britain, Asia and North America, is illustrated by a look at the careers of many of their predecessors.

The main idols of the young racing drivers are naturally those drivers who have made it into Formula One. The current test and reserve driver for the BMW Sauber F1 Team, Sebastian Vettel (GER), for instance, achieved his breakthrough in 2004, when he convincingly won the title in Formula BMW Germany. Six-time Grand Prix winner Ralf Schumacher (GER) also started his single-seater career in Formula BMW in the early 90's. The winner of Formula BMW Germany in 2002, Nico Rosberg (GER), completed his maiden Formula One season in 2006. Timo Glock (GER), Rosberg's predecessor as title holder in Germany, will take part in his first test with the BMW Sauber F1 Team on November 30. While Formula One test driver, Adrian Sutil (GER), also had his first outing in a single-seater in Formula BMW Germany.

The graduates from Formula BMW, however, are also successful in other motorsport categories. Currently former Formula BMW drivers are gaining a lot of attention in the A1GP World Cup of Motorsport. Adrian Zaugg (RSA), who took part in Formula BMW Germany in 2004, not only secured pole position in the first event of the season in Zandvoort, but also claimed victory in the first race. In race two, the 2005 Formula BMW Germany Champion, Nicolas Huelkenberg (GER), stepped into the spotlight and crossed the finish line in first position. As well as Zaugg and Huelkenberg, James Hinchcliffe (CAN), Sebastien Buemi (SUI), Michael Devaney (IRE) and Armaan Ebrahim (IND) are four further Formula BMW youngsters in the A1GP flying the colors of their home nations.

Meanwhile in North America Formula BMW USA is developing into a more and more promising training ground for the Champ Car World Series. Andreas Wirth (GER), who won the inaugural Formula BMW USA title in 2004, celebrated his debut in this hard-fought championship at the end of October. In Australia, the 21-year-old immediately shone by finishing ninth. Many other drivers, who broke into the world of Formula racing via Formula BMW, have aroused attention with good performances in the 2006 Champ Car Atlantic Championship, which is an ideal training ground for higher categories. Among these drivers were Graham Rahal (USA), who also entered A1GP, Tim Bridgman (GBR), Richard Philippe (FRA), Alan Scuito (USA), James Davison (AUS) and Michael Patrizi (AUS).

In 2006, numerous Formula BMW drivers managed to make their mark in Europe. Ho-Pin Tung (CHN), 2003 Formula BMW Asia Champion, won the title in the German Formula 3 Championship. Jonathan Summerton (USA) finished ninth in the Formula 3 Euro Series, in which Vettel took the runner-up spot. Bruno Senna (BRA), the nephew of three-time world champion Ayrton Senna (BRA), gained his first Formula experiences in the Formula BMW UK Championship in 2004, and successfully entered the British Formula 3 Championship. Additionally, a multitude of former Formula BMW drivers such as Chris van der Drift (NZL), Eduardo Piscopo (ITA), Sam Bird (GBR), James Sutton (GBR) and Dean Smith (GBR) were able to prove their talent in various national and international Formula Renault series.

In the DELL Formula BMW World Final, the highlight of the 2006 Formula BMW season, the spectators have a special event to watch. Not only can they look forward to seeing many gifted young racing drivers determined to grab the opportunity to conduct a Formula One test, but also it is highly likely the other competitors will in the future be battling for victory on a high level in other race series.

-credit: DELL Formula BMW World Final

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Series Formula BMW
Drivers Ralf Schumacher , Graham Rahal , Nico Rosberg , Timo Glock , Ho-Pin Tung , Sebastian Vettel , Bruno Senna , Andreas Wirth , Eduardo Piscopo , James Davison , Richard Philippe , Adrian Zaugg , Adrian Sutil , Armaan Ebrahim , Dean Smith , Sam Bird , Sébastien Buemi , James Hinchcliffe , Michael Patrizi , Chris van der Drift , Nico Hulkenberg , Jonathan Summerton , James Sutton
Teams Sauber