LABORDA TELLS OF HIS LOVE AFFAIR WITH BMW Buenos Aires (09/09/98) - Most successful manufacturer at the South American Touring Car Championship, thanks to ten wins out of 18 races, BMW owns much of its results to Marcos Laborda. At 28, the ...
LABORDA TELLS OF HIS LOVE AFFAIR WITH BMW
Buenos Aires (09/09/98) - Most successful manufacturer at the South American Touring Car Championship, thanks to ten wins out of 18 races, BMW owns much of its results to Marcos Laborda. At 28, the technical director of the Pro.As Mastercard team is already a veteran of motor racing, having worked with the BMW works team, F-Opel and even in F-1, with the Forti Corsi team. However, no matter how wide is his experience, he undeniably identify himself, both professionally and on his heart of hearts, with the Munich manufacturer:
"When I took the decision to work in Europe my first job was at the BMW Touring Car works team. Even when I left it to work with a F-Opel team I kept myself updated with what was going on with them thanks to Walter Weitzel, a fellow countryman of mine who is one of the top names at BMW Motorsport. Walter is one of those lucky people who made his hobby into his profession. Luckily for us, he is a major beacon to our task in developing and setting up our cars."
Cars run by Marcos Laborda already helped names like Patricio Spinella, Fernando Croceri, Oscar Larrauri - the reigning South American Touring Car champion -, and Ingo Hoffmann, who of course won the last two races. Laborda says that these results are due to a professional and dedicated work:
"We started this project some 18 month ago, alongside Hugo Vidella and Omar Pellegrino. To have Oscar Larrauri - somebody well known for his professionalism -, immediately demanded for a 110% dedication, also because we knew the potential of our rivals. We are talking of Race Car and its Alfa Romeo 155, of EF Racing and its Peugeot 406; INI's Chevrolet Vectras not to mention Oscar Fineschi's Toyota and Ricardo Risatti's Ford Mondeo.
"Once we had the back-bone of our team we got the backing of Mastercard", goes on Laborda. "That helped us to sign Ingo Hoffman, a priceless driver, for this season. Together, Larrauri and Hoffmann won six out of eight races already gone. Although this is the sort of result that make us proud, it doesn't secure none of the drivers, manufacturers or teams title. In fact, with four races still to go there are five drivers who can take the championship !"
The series eighth round, which took place last Sunday at the Obera circuit, registered the first 1-2 of a team this season, what reflects the level of competitiveness of the championship. After winning the race - where he also scored the pole position and the race's fastest lap -, Ingo Hoffmann was the first to acknowledge that " these result was only possible thanks to my team, who gave me a beautifully prepared car". Laborda is philosophical about it and tries to find a logical explanation:
"It is quite normal that a rear wheel driven car would have some advantage in a kind of mickey-mouse circuit like Obera. Having said that, and even if our cars were always among the fastest ones, it wasn't easy to find the proper set up for the track. Ingo was on his own all the way through and not even Larrauri could keep up with his pace. This one-two, I must say, must be credited to our technicians and engineers, guys who don't look at the clock in order to do their best. I am proud of such dedicated professionals."
As he speaks, Marcos Laborda shows his excitement for such good work. If the top two places at Obera were not enough, he had another reason to celebrate:
"Fernando Croceri, with a car from our junior team, the Diablo Motorsport, also did a fantastic job by starting eleventh on the grid to finish fourth. Nobody recover so many places in that race. Eventually, I can say that it only shows that everybody in our team has BMW blood running on our veins..."