Munich/Sebring. BMW M3s will start third, fifth, sixth and seventh on the GT grid for Saturday's 12 Hours at Sebring, second race in the 2001 American Le Mans Series. BMW Motorsport driver Jorg Muller (D) qualified the new No. 42 BMW M3 GTR in...
Munich/Sebring. BMW M3s will start third, fifth, sixth and seventh on the GT grid for Saturday's 12 Hours at Sebring, second race in the 2001 American Le Mans Series. BMW Motorsport driver Jorg Muller (D) qualified the new No. 42 BMW M3 GTR in two minutes 7.420 seconds on the 3.7-mile Sebring International Raceway road course. He will share driving duties with JJ Lehto (FIN). Their teammate Dirk Muller (D) started the final qualifying session in the No. 43 BMW M3, but retired after two laps with an engine failure. He and co-driver Fredrik Ekblom (S) will start seventh in class, based on Ekblom's Wednesday qualifying time of 2:08.612. BMW Team PTG M3s will start fifth and sixth in the GT class.
BMW Motorsport team manager Charly Lamm: "The 42 BMW M3 GTR ran very well in today's free practice as well as in qualifying. Third position is a good achievement for this car the first time out and a fantastic reward for the BMW engineers and the team who got this car ready in time for the Sebring race. The day also started well in the 43 BMW M3: Dirk and Fredrik worked on the race setup in the morning and then it went wrong in the afternoon when Dirk had an engine failure two laps into qualifying. We will change the engine and concentrate on race preparations in today's night practice." JJ Lehto #42: "Everything is still very new with this car, so we still have little problems here and there. But it's a good test race for us. I think we'll be quite competitive. We'll see what kind of pace we can keep and how fast we can go. We have to get a reliable car for the race and get as much information out of the race as possible. We'll make the best of what we have."
Jorg Muller #42: "BMW definitely built a car that is quicker than the old one. You can't expect a new car to be there immediately, but I'm pleased with the qualifying at the moment. I'm very happy to be with Team Schnitzer because they'll sort it out and we'll be competitive this season. That's what's important."
Fredrik Ekblom #43: "There's not much to say because I didn't drive. Unfortunately, we had a technical problem. But better it happens today than on Saturday."
1Dirk Muller #43: "It was a short qualifying for us. We were trying to further check our race setup, but all of a sudden, we had an engine problem. We need to check what happened."