Series newsletter 2009-07-16

Christensen celebrates third success in 2009 Formula BMW Europe. The Nuerburgring was the venue for rounds seven and eight of Formula BMW Europe. On the support programme for Formula One, which stopped in the Eifel mountains for the German Grand...

Christensen celebrates third success in 2009 Formula BMW Europe.

The Nuerburgring was the venue for rounds seven and eight of Formula BMW Europe. On the support programme for Formula One, which stopped in the Eifel mountains for the German Grand Prix, the exciting duel at the top of the Drivers' Championship continued: Denmark's Michael Christensen (Muecke Motorsport) had his nose ahead on Saturday. He came from second on the grid to beat Brazilian Felipe Nasr (Eurointernational), who had started from pole position. Christensen moved to the top of the overall standings. It was his third victory in the 2009 Formula BMW Europe series.

At the start, Nasr had to fend off attacks from William Buller (GB, Fortec Motorsport), who got away well from third place on the grid and entered the first corner side-by-side with the Brazilian. Nasr extended his lead to 1.1 seconds over the first three laps, during which time Christensen had become his closest rival. It took until the sixth lap before Nasr was passed by his long-term rival. By the time he crossed the finishing line, Christensen had built up a lead of over three seconds.

"That was very, very nice. I made only one mistake at the start and I was lucky I had a very good car to make up for that," said the victorious Dane. "I was fast enough to do that and am very happy I managed to get back and win." The top rookie in the seventh race of the season was Robin Frijns (NL/Josef Kaufmann Racing), who finished third.

Nasr wins at the Nuerburgring -- championship still neck-and-neck.

After Michael Christensen was able to win the seventh race of the 2009 season ahead of Felipe Nasr, the Brazilian turned up the heat on Sunday and regained the lead in the drivers' championship from the Dane. Three points now separate the top two drivers. The youngsters experienced their first wet race of the year on Sunday. The heavens opened shortly before the start of the eighth race of the year, meaning the first two laps of the race had to be completed behind the safety car.

Despite the challenging conditions, the leading trio -- Nasr, William Buller and Christensen -- put in flawless races. Nasr clocked one fastest lap after another, extending his lead by a second per lap. By the time he raced past the chequered flag, he was over eight seconds ahead of Christensen, who had passed Buller on lap nine. Robin Frijns was once again the fastest rookie, finishing in fifth place. The Dutchman now holds a healthy lead in the Rookie Cup.

The fact that Nasr was so successful was largely down to his mechanics, who had worked through the night. Following problems with the Brazilian's car, they worked to 01:00 and then started again at 05:00 to replace the engines in Nasr and his Spanish team-mate Daniel Juncadella's cars. "I am very happy, as I had a really great race," said Nasr. "That is what I was hoping for from the weekend. The conditions were very tricky and the best way to drive was to be very consistent. I was very calm and relaxed, and just did my job."

Ready for the classic: Lime Rock Park.

This coming weekend, Formula BMW Americas moves to Lime Rock Park for races eight and nine of the 2009 season. The duel between leader Giancarlo Vilarinho (BR/Eurointernational) on 120 points and Gabby Chaves (CO), who lies just six points behind his team-mate, enters the next round.

If the statistics are to be believed, the driver who wins at Lime Rock Park will definitely go on to become champion. That was the case in 2004, when Andreas Wirth (DE) was victorious there, as it was from 2006 to 2008, when Robert Wickens (CA), Daniel Morad (CA) and Alexander Rossi (US) first won in Lakeville and then went on to take the title at the end of the year.

"In one section the Formula BMW drivers traditionally deliver some show-stopping scenes," says Bill Auberlen (US), who drives for the BMW Rahal Letterman Racing Team in the American Le Mans Series. "Riding over the hump frequently has all four wheels lifting clear off the ground."

Formula BMW Pacific race postponed in Sentul.

Due to works following the relaying of the track surface at the "Sentul International Circuit" in Indonesia, Formula BMW Pacific organiser Motorsport Asia Limited has announced that races seven to ten of the 2009 season are to be postponed.

The next Formula BMW Pacific race weekend was due to take place from 16th to 19th July as part of the Asian Festival of Speed (AFOS). 16th August is now scheduled as the new date.

Axcil Jefferies becomes Childline ambassador.

Formula BMW Junior Axcil Jefferies (ZW) is a new ambassador for "Childline Zimbabwe", and will bear the organisation's logo on his FB02 car with immediate effect. "Childline" operates independent offices around the world in order to offer new prospects to disadvantaged children.

Jefferies started his career as a racing driver at the "Donnybrook Circuit", near Mabvuku, a suburb of the capital Harare. During that time he got to know many children who were worse off than him and his family. This made a lasting impression on Jefferies.- This is why the Formula BMW Pacific driver is so pleased to be able to inspire children and tell them about his background, as he did on a recent visit with the "Childline" team in Bindura (SW).

Formula BMW careers: Rene Rast.

Rene Rast (DE) first lined up in the former Formula BMW ADAC championship in 2003. This gave him valuable experience of many of the race tracks he would encounter later on in his career. In his 33 races for KUG-DeWalt Racing, the youngster picked up 15 points and achieved his best finish with a fifth place in Adria. He then moved from single-seaters to sports cars.

In 2005, Rast put the pedal to the metal in the ADAC VW Polo Cup, winning the title at the first attempt thanks to six victories in ten races, four pole positions and three fastest laps. Just one year later the German finished second in the SEAT Leon Supercopa series, narrowly missing out on the title by just three points. In 2007 he switched to the national and international Porsche Cup series.

Rast raced successfully in the Porsche Carrera Cup Germany for two years, ending his second season as champion. One victory, six podium finishes and a fastest lap made the former Formula BMW driver the cream of the crop and made a great case for him to make the step up to the Porsche Supercup. Having finished fifth in 2008, Rast already has two victories to his name this season, and currently lies in second behind overall leader Jeroen Bleekemolen (NL).

-credit: fbmw

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About this article
Series Formula BMW
Drivers Bill Auberlen , Jeroen Bleekemolen , Andreas Wirth , Robert Wickens , Daniel Morad , Alexander Rossi , René Rast , Michael Christensen , Giancarlo Vilarinho , Robin Frijns , Axcil Jefferies , Felipe Nasr , Gabby Chaves