Braselton, Ga., -- BMW swept all 2001 American Le Mans Series GT championships in finishing 1-2 today at the fourth annual Petit Le Mans. BMW drivers Bill Auberlen, Boris Said and Hans Stuck drove their No. 6 Team PTG BMW M3 GTR to victory in the...
Braselton, Ga., -- BMW swept all 2001 American Le Mans Series GT championships in finishing 1-2 today at the fourth annual Petit Le Mans. BMW drivers Bill Auberlen, Boris Said and Hans Stuck drove their No. 6 Team PTG BMW M3 GTR to victory in the GT class, covering 360 laps in 9 hours 17:07 minutes around the 2.54-mile Road Atlanta circuit. The trio finished one lap ahead of the second place No. 43 BMW Motorsport M3 GTR of Dirk Müller and Jörg Müller - Jörg Müller capturing the ALMS GT driver's crown with the finish. Dirk Müller set a new race record of 1:23.163 on lap 71 of the race. BMW Motorsport captured the team championship. The No. 42 BMW Motorsport M3 GTR of JJ Lehto, Fredrik Ekblom and Karl Wendlinger finished fourth, while the No. 10 Team PTG M3 GTR of Niclas Jönsson, Brian Cunningham and David Murry retired on lap 136 with a driveshaft failure. The new V8-powered BMW M3 GTRs have taken the pole and the victory at the last six rounds of the 2001 ALMS season, sweeping the GT manufacturers, team and drivers championships.
Bill Auberlen, driver No. 6 PTG M3 GTR
"Who do you owe this win to? The list is so long. First the Team PTG crew, everyone from BMW of North America, Yokohama - everything and everyone played a part. The M3 GTR is a masterpiece - it screamed the same perfect note from beginning to end. The team? Not one mistake. I had to pit for fuel close to the end and to ensure the victory we put on new Yokohamas."
Boris Said, driver No. 6 PTG M3 GTR
"We stuck to our plan and executed it. That is what you need to win an endurance race. We were conservative in traffic and the M3 was good enough to run hard at the end. These races usually come down to mistakes - you try not to make any and take advantage when others do."
Hans Stuck, driver No. 6 PTG M3 GTR
"Unbelievable! Another long distance win for me - two Le Mans, three Sebrings and now the Petit Le Mans - I am very proud. My co-drivers, Bill and Boris did the majority of the work, but I am happy to have done my share."
Tom Salkowsky, motorsports manager, BMW of North America, LLC
"A fantastic race for BMW! An endurance race like the Petit Le Mans tests the strength, character and the will of teams and machines and BMW was certainly tested today. BMW has much to be proud of today. A perfect way to end the 2001 ALMS season."
Tom Milner, owner BMW Team PTG
"Next to Sebring, the Petit Le Mans is probably the most important endurance race in North America and I am very proud of everyone associated with Team PTG. A great finish for the season and it looks like we are invited to Le Mans. I can't say enough about Yokohama who has supported us for seven years."
- Bill Cobb