Answering the old question about how to win a sports-car race, Bill Auberlen pulled out an early lead and extended it today at Sebring International Raceway to win Round 1 of the 2003 SCCA Pro Racing Speed Touring Car Championship by a margin of...
Answering the old question about how to win a sports-car race, Bill Auberlen pulled out an early lead and extended it today at Sebring International Raceway to win Round 1 of the 2003 SCCA Pro Racing Speed Touring Car Championship by a margin of victory of 1.372 seconds over the No. 42 Acura.
Making an excellent start in his No. 93 Turner Motorsports BMW 325i, he led the 40-car field from the green flag to the checkered to win his second career SCCA Speed Touring Car race, in only his fourth career Touring Car start. Setting a new track record in qualifying, he also broke the race lap record with a lap of 2:27.584 around the 3.7-mile Sebring International Raceway.
Ken Dobson, driving the No. 7 Chili Pepper Racing 325Ci finished eighth and Will Turner was ninth in the No. 92 Turner Motorsports 325i to round out the top 10 BMW finishers.
Fourth-place qualifier, Robert Stretch, had to start from the pit lane after his car would not start on the grid, but drove his No. 98 Wheels America BMW 325Ci to a fine 12th-place finish.
BMW and Auberlen now lead the Manufacturer's and Driver's Championships respectively as the series heads to Round 2 at Mosport International Raceway in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada, on May 17-18.
The win is the 34th for the BMW marque in World Challenge history. BMW won the Touring Class Manufacturer's Championship in 2001.
BILL AUBERLEN, No. 93 TURNER MOTORSPORT BMW 325i:
"The car we raced and won with was the car we came here with; no problems at all. We can just wax it up and bring it to Mosport.
DID YOU HAVE ANY PROBLEMS OR CONCERNS DURING THE RACE? At the end I began to have an issue with the front tires starting to lock-up and as soon as we clear up that we'll be in good shape."
WILL TURNER, No. 92 TURNER MOTORSPORTS BMW 325i:
"We owe a lot to the great platform that the BMW gives us. We do not have to do much to get these cars to go fast. We came here to win and that is the way we will look at the rest of the season. Bill (Auberlen) did a great job today and I expect to be on the podium with him at the next event."