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BMW Friday Watkins Glen Report

PROTOTYPE TECHNOLOGY GROUP BMW M3 TEAM - FRIDAY, AUG. 21, 1998 First Union Six Hours of The Glen, Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International Raceway PTG BMW M3 LEADS THE WAY IN PRACTICE AT WATKINS GLEN Bill Auberlen recorded today's fastest GT3 lap in...

PROTOTYPE TECHNOLOGY GROUP BMW M3 TEAM - FRIDAY, AUG. 21, 1998 First Union Six Hours of The Glen, Watkins Glen (N.Y.) International Raceway

PTG BMW M3 LEADS THE WAY IN PRACTICE AT WATKINS GLEN Bill Auberlen recorded today's fastest GT3 lap in the #10 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 four-door in practice for Sunday's First Union Six Hours of The Glen at Watkins Glen, N.Y. Auberlen toured the 3.4-mile, 11-turn road course in 1 minute, 55.964 seconds (an average of 117.03 mph), almost a second-and-a-half faster than the next-best GT3 competitor. He'll share the car with Mark Simo and Andy Pilgrim in Sunday's United States Road Racing Championship season finale. The #6 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 coupe of Ross Bentley, Peter Cunningham and Marc Duez recorded the fourth-fastest GT3 time at 1:58.458 (114.57 mph). Bentley is leading the USRRC driver's championship and can clinch it Sunday simply by driving the minimum requirement of 90 minutes per driver.

PILGRIM SUBS FOR SAID IN PTG DRIVER LINEUP Veteran road racer Andy Pilgrim is filling in for regular PTG driver Boris Said this weekend and is sharing the #10 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 four-door with Bill Auberlen and Mark Simo. Said, meanwhile, is taking part in the NASCAR Craftsman Truck Series race at Topeka this weekend, driving an entry co-owned by Simo and Ernie Irvan. Pilgrim is no stranger to the PTG lineup. He co-drove the No. 6 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 coupe to its first-ever GT2-class victory in a Professional Sports Car Racing-sanctioned event at Las Vegas Motor Speedway. "These are just super cars to drive, and this is a super team to work with," said Pilgrim, a regular Porsche driver in GT2, and also a Speedvision Cup series driver with the Massari-Bell BMW M3 team. "The PTG cars are so balanced that it's much easier to drive them fast. It takes much less work to drive close to the limit, although reaching the limit is a lot of work in any car. Even the Yokohama tires are fantastic. Both times I've gotten into the car so far the tires were an hour old, and they were working really well."

NO. 6 PTG BMW M3 COUPE COMES BACK TO GT3 After winning five consecutive races in GT2 (four SPORTS CAR-sanctioned races at Las Vegas, Lime Rock, Road Atlanta and Mosport Park, and the USRRC-sanctioned street race in Minneapolis), the No. 6 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 coupe has been converted back to GT3 specs this weekend. A five-speed gearbox replaces the six-speed that was allowed in GT2. Another 250 pounds of weight was added to the car, as well as a rev limiter. The car could run lighter and there was no rev limit in its GT2 configuration.

BILL AUBERLEN, #10 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 Four-Door - "It's just amazing that we configured a whole new package for this race - the engine, the weight, the suspension, just about everything - and it's working. The car is very enjoyable to drive."

ROSS BENTLEY, #6 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 Coupe - "It feels good to have a comfortable lead in the points championship, but I'd really like to do it right by standing on top of the victory podium come Sunday. Yeah, I want to be sure to win the championship, but I certainly don't want to do it by just hanging in there. I want to finish it off with a win here. It'd be a lot more fun that way. The car's not quite where we want it yet, but it will be by Sunday. Six hours is a long race and a lot of things can happen. So we just have to go out there and do what we've been doing, and the results will take care of themselves. Heck, we've won 12 GT3 races in a row, so why deviate from the plan, now?"

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Series GT
Drivers Boris Said , Andy Pilgrim , Bill Auberlen , Ross Bentley , Marc Duez