BMW's WTCC drivers gather their strength for the final spurt. The FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) is presently enjoying a seven-week break. The series will resume with a two-race event at Oschersleben (DE) on 6th September 2009. Before...
BMW's WTCC drivers gather their strength for the final spurt.
The FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) is presently enjoying a seven-week break. The series will resume with a two-race event at Oschersleben (DE) on 6th September 2009. Before the series enters its third and last phase, the BMW national team drivers are putting the break to good use by gathering strength, and building up their concentration ahead of the final spurt.
BMW Team Germany's Augusto Farfus (BR), third in the drivers' classification with 76 points, embarked on a trip to Asia shortly after the races in Brands Hatch (GB). "I headed there on behalf of Formula BMW Pacific and PETRONAS to be involved some young driver development work," explains the 25-year-old. After his Asian visit and a test in Zolder (BE), he headed back home to Brazil. Here with his friends and family he got ready for the final eight races. He adds: "After my return to Europe I will work hard with the team to ensure that we are best prepared for the final straight."
Test drives, PR appointments and other events equally fill the diary of team-mate Jorg Muller (DE). "It's hardly a summer break for me, there is something constantly happening," says Muller, presently sixth in the championship. "The break is more important for the engineers and technicians, as they work on the cars every day in search of more speed. A few days away from the workshop helps to recharge their batteries."
Andy Priaulx (GB) puts his family as top priority during a break. "Quality time with the family is always my priority," says the BMW Team UK driver. "To get several days together without me flying off for a test or race is bliss. The break will do us all good." Priaulx enjoyed a boat trip which took wife Jo and their children from their home in Guernsey to St Melo on the French coast during the break. A week before the races in Germany, the triple world champion will visit the Formula One race in Spa- Francorchamps as host to the BMW Sauber F1 Team's Paddock Club guests.
Like Priaulx, Alessandro Zanardi (IT) is attracted to water, saying: "I was fortunate enough to be able to spend the time with friends and my family on our boat. We explored the islands off the Croatian coast. But I still managed to train on the boat. The week after the Oschersleben races I will take part in the Para-cycling World Championships. It will be thrilling to represent my country in another world championship."
Zanardi will return to the cockpit of his BMW 320si WTCC for a test at Adria at the end of August in readiness for the races in the Magdeburg region, scene of the 42- year-old's first WTCC victory in 2005.
His BMW Team Italy-Spain team-mate Sergio Hernandez (ES) is another who can't wait to return to the battle for world championship points. "There is something missing in my life," says the Spaniard, presently relaxing on Ibiza. "I just need to race. Were it up to me, we would head for Oschersleben immediately and get the free practice session underway." However, until then Hernandez will enjoy his second- biggest passion: diving on the popular holiday island. "I instruct at a diving school. I really enjoy that. To be under water is pure relaxation, although obviously every day I devote a lot of time to the fitness studio. After all, I intend being really well prepared when it starts again."