Armin Schwarz newsletter 2008-08-30

Countdown to Primm 300 is on Martin Christensen on US-German Combo Dear Friends, I dictated the lines you read right now in a hotel room in New Zealand. Together with Europe's biggest private TV station, RTL TV, I came here to cover the World...

Countdown to Primm 300 is on
Martin Christensen on US-German Combo

Dear Friends,

I dictated the lines you read right now in a hotel room in New Zealand. Together with Europe's biggest private TV station, RTL TV, I came here to cover the World Rally Championship round on this remote and beautiful island with its incredibly smooth and fast gravel roads.

Please read my short preview to the upcoming Terrible's Primm 300 and an interview we made earlier this week with my boss, driver colleague and friend, Martin Christensen.

From New Zealand it's only an eleven hours flight to LA and then I'll be back with the All German Motorsports team to tackle the SCORE Terrible's Primm 300 on 5 and 6 September held close to Las Vegas, Nevada. It will be great to see all my friends back in Escondido again. And it will be an exciting race: At the fourth of five rounds counting towards the SCORE Series, my team boss and driver colleague Martin Christensen and I want nothing less than grab the points lead of the world's toughest off-road championship with a top result.

Last year we just missed the Class 1 Podium here. This year we are #101 and the first Class 1 Buggy on the road behind the Trophy Trucks. So let's see what we can do. I'll drive the start and the first to laps of 72 miles each, Martin does the second two laps.

Primm 300 premieres on European TV thanks to RTL TV and Anchor Nazan Eckes

We at AGM enjoy very special support at the Primm 300: Nazan Eckes, star anchor at Europe's biggest private TV station, RTL TV, swaps her normal working field of Formula 1 for the world's most popular desert racing series. Nazan will report on her off-road experiences in a special 30-minute programme within the RTL coverage of the Italian Formula One Grand Prix on 13 September from 15.20 hrs Central European Summer Time. That's a great chance for us and gives us tons of extra motivation. We've got to be there at the front with millions of people watching in Europe!

Nazan Eckes, top anchor of RTL TV, Europe's biggest private TV station will report from the Primm 300

So keep your fingers crossed, we'll be out there and do our very best for a great performance and a great show!

Best wishes,

Interview with Martin Christensen: "Interesting Conversations in Bavarian-English-Style"

?AGM is unique with its US-German co-operation. What are the plusses of such a co-operation?

Martin: The benefit of having an international team of crew and drivers is all the different ideas and experience that is brought to the table. It is my job as team owner of AGM to take in all the ideas, use my experience and apply what I and our team think will make our racing better.

?Do Armin & Armin have a different approach to racing than you US guys?

Martin: Armin and Armin are both professional race car drivers with a lot of racing experience, Baja Off Road racing is new for them but their rally background makes them excellent drivers for this competition. In Baja racing keeping the car together over a very long distance of the race is very important, here comes the experience of the AGM team members in very handy since they are navigators in the cars.

?How does the communication work with your two Germans? Is there a lot of laughing and fun on the radio with Bavarian-English?

Martin: The whole purpose of us racing is to have fun, we always have a good time especially on the long days of pre-running and racing, we can have some quite interesting conversations in the Bavarian/English style. But over all communicating is not a problem.

?How do the fans and the media react to your Californian-German squad?

Martin: I think most of the Media find the German/USA Combo very interesting and it makes our team a little unique from most of the US teams, I feel it is well received.

?With your two car campaign, did you take new staff on board?

Martin: AGM is in a constant growing process, we have added several team members to the AGM team over the last year, with an additional chace truck and trailer. Also on the equipment side we have been gearing up. With the help from Eibach the most recent addition to the team is a super support truck that will debut at the Primm race coming up.

Martin Christensen (r) and Armin Schwarz: winning US-German combo

We are always looking for qualified team members, specially for a long and difficult race like the Baja 1000 you can never have enough people, but the team we have is very good and experienced in Baja so we will manage just fine.

?How many are you between the races and during a big one like the Baja 1000?

Martin: Typically total team members going to the Baja 1000 we will have well over 40 members plus media.

?From the technical side it sounds quite tricky to run a BMW motor yourself and a Chevy unit in Armin Kremer's and Adam Pfankuch's buggy. How do you manage that?

Martin: The chassis are very similar so there is no problem, on the engine side the engine packages we are running have been thoroughly tested and I feel they are very reliable. The replacement of a complete engine is not allowed anyway if you have a complete failure, according to the rules you have to start and finish with the same engine block.

?How important is the development of components during the season?

Martin: We never stop developing, even durin g the season we are testing new things and systems constantly. I am however very careful not to compromise reliability and performance of the cars.

?You are very innovative with partners like ZFSachs and Xtrac ...

Martin: Yes, we are truly on the front of new products. Take for example the ZF Sachs decoupling role bar we currently are working on. This has proven to be a very, very helpful part of the chassis setup, and this product will be available for sale thru AGM here in the US in the near future.

?You develop great race parts yourself, like the AGM Dakar Series Jacking System. Can you tell us about your best selling parts and the volume of this business?

Martin: AGM is first and foremost a race team, but AGM has for several years developed engines, lighting systems, and jacking systems. Whenever AGM see a need for a new product in the Off Road Racing environment we will design it and produce prototypes with the help of Meziere enterprises, we will then test the prototypes and continue to improve the product. Once we feel the product is fully developed we will produce it and sell it to other racers.

Martin Christensen in action behind the wheel of his AGM Class 1 Unlimited Buggy

I often get asked why I sell my products to other teams. Well, I am a firm believer that racing is won on a combination of product and driving skills and I have no problem letting the competition have what I have. There is more than enough things that come into play in winning a race that I don't think one product alone can win a race.

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    Armin Schwarz


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Drivers Armin Schwarz , Armin Kremer