Zandvoort: BMW Motorsport preview

BMW Drivers well prepared for WTCC's European Start. Munich, 30th April 2007. The next round of the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) is taking place on 6th May. After a break of almost two months, the drivers of the BMW national teams...

BMW Drivers well prepared for WTCC's European Start.

Munich, 30th April 2007. The next round of the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) is taking place on 6th May. After a break of almost two months, the drivers of the BMW national teams will be fighting for world championship points at the Circuit Park Zandvoort. The testing sessions in Brno (CZE), Oschersleben (GER) and Monza (ITA) during the race-free period saw intensive work done on the BMW 320si WTCC. BMW made a simply fantastic start to the season in Curitiba (BRA). Over both races the two BMW Team Germany drivers Jorg Muller (DEU) and Augusto Farfus (BRA) together with defending champion Andy Priaulx (GBR) from BMW Team UK shared the three podium places amongst themselves.

However, because of the positive result from Brazil the three BMW drivers must now each cope with 35 kilograms of handicap weight in rounds three and four. Alessandro Zanardi (ITA) from BMW Team Italy-Spain too will be driving with 15 kilograms of ballast onboard. Only his team colleague Felix Porteiro (ESP) will not be saddled with any additional weight for the race. Nevertheless, in comparison to his competitors in the SEAT, Chevrolet and Alfa Romeo teams, the 23-year old will be running significantly heavier than in Curitiba - following a decision by the FIA Touring Car Bureau these three manufacturers will benefit from a 25 kilogram reduction in weight in Zandvoort.

Jorg Muller (BMW Team Germany):
"I am of course delighted that we are racing again after the long break. And we haven't been resting on our laurels during that time. The test sessions went very well and BMW was always up at the front. But I am predicting a different situation in Zandvoort than what we saw in Curitiba. Augusto, Andy and myself have a lot of weight onboard. Added to that is the reduction in weight for our competitors. So my only aim is to still take as many points as possible. Because I was born in Kerkrade these two races are something of a home event for me."

Augusto Farfus (BMW Team Germany):
"It's good that the season is finally getting underway again. I was able to get to know the Zandvoort track a few weeks ago during testing. I like it a lot. It rises and drops constantly and there is a great variety of corners to master. We will have to wait and see how the changes in weight will affect us. We have to get points to stay up there with the leaders."

Andy Priaulx (BMW Team UK):
"Our recent schedule has been pretty rigorous. During testing in Brno our BMW Team UK was the quickest there. Then we went to Oschersleben and Monza. So all said our preparations for the start of racing in Europe have been very good. But we need that because the challenges ahead of us are anything but easy. In Zandvoort we will have to get used to the changing conditions. The winds are sometimes very gusty and the track grip can change from one second to the next."

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History was made at the Dutch Grand Prix of 1961 at Circuit Park Zandvoort - all 15 race cars completed the 75 laps without a single pit stop.

2007 sees Circuit Park Zandvoort host an event in the World Touring Car Championship race calendar for the very first time. Apart from the WTCC the track is hosting numerous other international race series this season.

On 28 - 29th July 2007, the young drivers in Formula BMW Germany will be battling for championship points. Following races at Oschersleben, the EuroSpeedway in Lausitz, the Norisring and the Nurburgring, Circuit Park Zandvoort is the first international venue for this successful grade for aspiring Formula 1 drivers. Formula BMW Germany begins its new season next weekend with a total of 24 up-and- coming young drivers.

There is one point of similarity between the Circuit Park Zandvoort and the new Bahrain International Circuit, where the BMW Sauber F1 Team collected eight world championship points in the third Formula 1 race of the year: due to the direct proximity of the Zandvoort circuit's to the North Sea beach coastline, it is possible that sand can blow onto the track and impact on the racing conditions.

Prior to appearing at Zandvoort, BMW drivers Andy Priaulx and Jorg Muller will be attending a special event. This coming Saturday BMW will, for the first time in 31 years, be bringing a modern Formula 1 car back to the legendary Northern Circuit of the Nurburgring. Nick Heidfeld (GER) will be driving the BMW Sauber F1 Team's car.

Zandvoort lies in the North-Holland province of the Netherlands and has some 16000 inhabitants who live mainly from tourism. Another attraction of the area is the Circuit Zandvoort Amusement Park.

Both of these WTCC races will be 12 laps. The first race will start on Sunday at 12.05 hrs. Race two will begin at 15.35 hrs. Eurosport will be providing live television coverage of both races as well as qualifying (Saturday from 15.00 hrs).

-credit: bmw

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About this article
Series WTCC
Drivers Nick Heidfeld , Andy Priaulx , Jorg Muller , Augusto Farfus , Felix Porteiro
Teams Sauber