TURNER TAKES 2007 GRAND-AM KONI CHALLENGE ST CHAMPIONSHIP, AND BRINGS BMW MANUFACTURERS TITLE; AUBERLEN LEADS TMS GS TEAM TO VIR 6-HOUR WIN After two 6 hour races at Virginia International Raceway, TMS and BMW Emerge as Champions ALTON, VA -...
TURNER TAKES 2007 GRAND-AM KONI CHALLENGE ST CHAMPIONSHIP, AND BRINGS BMW MANUFACTURERS TITLE; AUBERLEN LEADS TMS GS TEAM TO VIR 6-HOUR WIN
After two 6 hour races at Virginia International Raceway, TMS and BMW Emerge as Champions
ALTON, VA - October 7, 2007 -- A third-place finish by the #95 Turner Motorsport / H&R Springs / Borla Exhaust BMW 330i teammates Adam Burrows and Trevor Hopwood gave the New England duo their first professional championships and the Turner Motorsport team its second-consecutive Grand-Am KONI Challenge ST Team Championship.
Burrows and Hopwood ran in the lead pack for the entire grueling 6 hour race. The third-place finish gave Burrows and Hopwood an unmatched record of top-three podium finishes in half of the year's 12 races, including three second-place showings. Consistency and podiums were the key to success for the duo as they finished out of the top-10 only once in 2007 and had the most consistent record of any team in KONI ST competition. This weekend's finish was the fifth straight top ten and the 29th top ten finish for the #95 Turner BMW in the last 32 races stretching back to the 2005 season -- a stunning 90% success rate for top-ten finishes.
"This is fantastic and just a huge relief," Burrows said. "We knew that we just had to focus on our own race, and it played out perfectly for us. I have to thank Will (Turner) for having the faith in us that he did. The whole Turner Motorsport organization is amazing. We had a perfect car every race this season."
For the Turner team, the ST crown follows last year's title that was earned by team owner Will Turner and his teammate Don Salama. The Turner team also won last year's team championship in the Grand-Am KONI Challenge GS class which gives them an impressive record run of three team championships in the last two years.
"Turner Motorsport has won championships before, and the whole team just kept their cool all weekend," Hopwood said. "We didn't know what to expect this year, but given how competitive this series is, we really didn't think we'd be ending the year by taking the championship. But we got off to a solid start at Daytona, and just kept building from there."
This is the 5th championship for Turner Motorsport in the last 5 years, continuing what has become a veritable dynasty for TMS Racing and BMW.
In a separate season-ending six hour race at VIR, Bill Auberlen and Chris Gleason won their third GS race of the year in the No. 96 Turner Motorsport / H&R Springs / StopTech Brakes BMW M3. Auberlen, who also co-drove with Joey Hand, led 20 laps to score his second-straight GS win with Turner Motorsport crossing the finish line 23.891 seconds ahead of his closest challenger.
The Grand-Am KONI Challenge GS Manufacturer Championship went to BMW sealing the crown on the strength of Turner Motorsport's four wins in 2007. BMW ended the year with 382 points, 22 points ahead of second-place finisher Ford.
"We came here to end the year with a win and take home a championship (for BMW)," Auberlen said. "I can't say enough about Turner Motorsport, they win wherever they go."