Munich/Fort Worth. The BMW Motorsport cars both experienced difficulties during Saturday's race, but a gentleman's move determined their final finishing order. Jean-Marc Gounon (F) and Bill Auberlen (USA) finished fifth after problems in traffic...
Munich/Fort Worth. The BMW Motorsport cars both experienced difficulties during Saturday's race, but a gentleman's move determined their final finishing order. Jean-Marc Gounon (F) and Bill Auberlen (USA) finished fifth after problems in traffic that forced pitstops for repairs. A clutch problem and contact with another car slowed the No. 42 V12, driven by JJ Lehto (FIN) and Jorg Muller (D). Although the No. 43 car was ahead of the No. 42 car, team manager Charly Lamm invoked team orders so the No. 42 car finished fourth, enabling Muller and Lehto to maintain their lead in championship standings. In the GT class, Hans-J. Stuck (D) finished seventh in the No. 7 BMW M3.
BMW Motorsport team manager Charly Lamm: "It was not our race. We encountered technical problems in BMW V12 LMR number 42 at mid-race, so Jorg couldn't drive the car at its limit. And he had to pit when a slow car touched him in the rear, which cost us time again. Car 43 came back strong after time was lost with incidents on the track and I want to thank Jean-Marc, who let Jorg pass just a few minutes from the end, which will help Jorg and JJ in the driver's championship."
JJ Lehto #42: "It's disappointing. We finished the race again, but fourth was the best we could get at the moment. We got points, but we need to be quicker or it's going to be tough on the championship."
Jorg Muller #42: "It was the first time we had a technical problem with our car. The clutch wouldn't shift down anymore, so this is why the lap times were so inconsistent. But finishing fourth with a broken clutch is not too bad. Thanks to my team-mates, it was very fine for them to wait. Next time, I'm going to do something like this for them."
Bill Auberlen #43: "The car ran as good as we could make it run. Jean-Marc took off ahead of JJ, I carried on the same position and then he got in and did a real good job at the end. He had a great car to fight with at the end and got it up to third for a little bit. Then the Panoz was too strong and, team orders, we had to wait for our team car to go around."
Jean-Marc Gounon #43: "Today we showed with the 43 car that we could be even quicker than 42. I'm quite happy that we're working with the team very well, on the proper line all weekend. At the end, it was okay for sure. I think it was the best setup we could achieve for this track, and that is very positive."
Hans-J. Stuck, #7, GT class: "One hour 40 minutes in the car! The car was fine, then the 36 car spun in front of me and I had to go to the gravel and knocked my front splitter off. I lost some power down the front straight, but no influence to the handling. For me the race was too short."