BRIDGEWATER, N.J., (January 12, 2004) Team Rennsport announced today that driver Robert Bunker, of Bridgewater, N.J., successfully completed the three- day Formula BMW USA Licensing Course at the Formula BMW Racing Center in Valencia, ...
BRIDGEWATER, N.J., (January 12, 2004) Team Rennsport announced today that driver Robert Bunker, of Bridgewater, N.J., successfully completed the three- day Formula BMW USA Licensing Course at the Formula BMW Racing Center in Valencia, Spain.
Bunker was among 23 drivers from North and South America who attended the three-day Formula BMW USA Licensing Course and Scholarship Qualifying Program. Drivers were instructed and evaluated over the first two days of the three day program to fulfill the Formula BMW USA licensing requirements.
"It was an honor to attend the licensing course," said the 15 year old Bunker. "To be coached for three days by world-class drivers like BMW's current European Touring Car driver, Jorg Muller, was an unbelievable experience. The BMW FB2 is fantastic to drive; I can't wait for the first race of the season."
Situated on the eastern coast of Spain, the Mediterranean city of Valencia is home to Circuit de la Communitat. This impeccably designed, and world renowned, racing facility is host to a wide variety of two and four-wheel motorsports events, including the MotoGP motorcycle world championships. The track is a favorite among spectators as the entire four kilometer circuit can be viewed from the elevated grandstands. While not an official Formula 1 Grand Prix track, the meticulously maintained modern facility serves as an excellent testing ground for many of the Formula 1 teams, including the BMW WilliamsF1 Team.
BMW will award six scholarships, valued at $40,000 each, which must be applied to Formula BMW USA for the 2004 season. A shootout was conducted on the third day of the program to determine which drivers will receive the six scholarships. Each of the drivers were evaluated, by the Formula BMW Racing Center staff, on areas such as braking, shifting, racing line, lap times, age, and prior racing experience. Formula BMW USA is a driver development series and as such, younger, inexperienced drivers were given additional credit during the evaluation; a concept unlike most other shootouts which focus more heavily on lap times. Scholarship winners will be announced shortly.
"As you would expect from BMW, every aspect of the program is first-class," said Chip Bunker, Robert's father and Team Principal for Team Rennsport. "Every detail is accounted for and the cars are meticulously prepared before every on- track session."
Drivers wishing to compete in the Formula BMW USA Championship must be at least fifteen years old, and must first obtain their junior or international C license. Licensing instruction takes place at the Formula BMW Racing Center in Valencia, Spain. Drivers are taught both the theory and practicalities of such subjects as gear changes, braking, racing line, flags, regulations, starts, and proper safety car procedures. Instruction is carried out under the professional supervision of Jorg Muller, current BMW works driver, and Mike Strotmann, Coordinator of the Formula BMW Racing Center and former BMW works driver.
For more information on Formula BMW USA or Robert Bunker, please visit www.bmw-motorsport.com or www.robertbunker.com.