PTG BMW M3s Win GT2, Finish 1-2 in GT3 In Sports Car's Nevada Grand Prix LAS VEGAS, April 26, 1998: The BMW M3s of Prototype Technology Group made the absolute most of their efforts in today's Toshiba Copiers & Fax Nevada Grand Prix...
PTG BMW M3s Win GT2, Finish 1-2 in GT3 In Sports Car's Nevada Grand Prix LAS VEGAS, April 26, 1998: The BMW M3s of Prototype Technology Group made the absolute most of their efforts in today's Toshiba Copiers & Fax Nevada Grand Prix at Las Vegas Motor Speedway, scoring a runaway win in Professional Sports Car Racing's GT2 class, and finishing 1-2 in GT3. M3s now have won 16 of their last 18 GT3 races, and 17 of their last 19 overall counting today victory in their GT2 debut. That streak includes the last two GT3 manufacturer's championships for BMW, last year's Sports Car team title, and last year's GT3 driver's championship for Bill Auberlen, who drove both winning cars here today at LVMS. "It was a pretty tall order, coming here and taking both GT3 and GT2 at a track that has been difficult for us," said Scott Doniger, M Brand Manager, BMW of North America, Inc. "But a day like today shows the reliability of these M3s and the team's perseverance can really make things happen." With today's two victories, Auberlen now has 16 Sports Car wins in his career. He started the No. 10 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 four-door from second on the GT3 grid, took the lead on the very first lap, and never looked back as co-drivers Mark Simo and Marc Duez finished the job. Peter Cunningham, co-driving with Ross Bentley in the No. 1 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 four-door, fought off the intense challenge of the No. 17 Porsche 911 of Dennis Aase and Tom Peterson in the final laps to earn the runner-up spot. In GT2, Andy Pilgrim started the No. 6 Yokohama/Fina BMW M3 coupe from the pole, handed the car off to co-driver Boris Said, and Auberlen drove the final stint. Their nearest competitor, the No. 99 Porsche 911 of Larry Schumacher and Martin Snow, finished four laps back in the three-hour, 45-minute endurance race over the 2.15-mile LVMS road course. "In the end, the M Power struck back," Auberlen said. "After the disappointing weekend we had here last year, and yesterday in (GT3) qualifying, this is just the greatest. Our cars are that good. We make some basic modifications to our GT3 car and enter it in GT2, and we leave here with a GT2 win. That's just incredible. With a team like ours, with drivers like ours, with support like we get from BMW and Yokohama, you've got to have a great day to beat us. This sure makes up for the disappointing times we've had at this race track." PTG team owner Tom Milner gave much of the credit for today's showing to his pit crew. "They did just a fantastic job in the pits today," said Tom Milner, PTG team owner. "It was a tough race in GT3, and they made the difference. Our drivers did a fantastic job, as always. Mark Simo, in particular, carried the load under outstanding pressure and did a marvelous job. Hats off to everyone on this team. This is about as perfect a day as you can possibly have." The next stop on the schedule for the PTG team is Homestead, Fla., May 15-17 in the second event of the season sanctioned by the revived United States Road Racing Championship. The Sports Car season resumes with the traditional Memorial Day weekend event in Lime Rock, Conn.
BMWs STEAL THE SHOW IN SATURDAY'S SPEEDVISION CUP RACE
Andy Pilgrim had a busy weekend as he and Massari & Bell teammate Terry Borcheller scored the overall victory in the Grand Sports class No. 54 BMW M3 in Saturday's two-hour and 45-minute Speedvision Cup race at LVMS. Pilgrim qualified the M3 on the pole. The other Massari & Bell team car, the No. 63 M3 of Chris Miller and Lee Ezell, finished fifth overall. Meanwhile, a pair of BMW 328iS entries of IMTEK Tag-EMS/First Equity Racing finished 1-2 in the Sports class.