Woodcliff Lake, N.J. – May 1, 2017 . . . BMW drivers brought a record 15 M235i Racing cars to the opening rounds of the 2017 Pirelli World Challenge Touring Car Championship at Virginia International Raceway, in Alton, Virginia with excellent results.
Greg Liefooghe, driving the No. 20 Stephen Cameron Racing M235iR, finished second after starting from the class pole position. Liefooghe was only .878 seconds behind the winning Audi at the 18-lap race’s checkered flag. Third place went to Nick Wittmer, driving the No. 91 ST Racing M235iR. In a field of more than 50 cars, a total of 12 M235iR drivers finished in the top-20, including six in the top-10.
Contact while lapping a competitor and the resulting heavy impact with only some 12 minutes remaining ended the day for Nick Wittmer who had led the race since the opening lap in his No. 91 ST Racing M235iR. The No. 20 Stephen Cameron Racing M235iR, of Greg Liefooghe, inherited the lead and ultimately the win after the checkered flag was waved to end the race four laps early. The victory combined with a second place finish in Round 1 unofficially ties Liefooghe for the lead in TC driver points standings. A total of 10 M235iR drivers finished in the top-20 to round out an excellent weekend for BMW.
Returning to PWC competition in 2016, BMW finished second in TC manufacturer points standings to cap an excellent inaugural season for the BMW M235i Racing in North America. Toby Grahovec, of Little Elm, Texas, was crowned TC class driver’s champion following a strong season in the No. 26 Classic BMW Motorsports M235iR. Classic BMW Motorsports also scored the TC class Team title.
Greg Liefooghe, driver No. 20 BMW M235iR: “The M235iR was very good this weekend. I’m sorry Nick got tangled in lapped traffic in Round 2 as he was right there the entire way. Overall, we scored good points and move forward with strong momentum from the weekend.”
Jonas Kraus, Head of Sales for BMW Customer Racing: “The M235iR has certainly proven to be a success with 15 cars entered in the first Rounds of our second season of PWC competition. This is pure customer racing and we are pleased to support so many BMW drivers.”
Victor Leleu, BMW of North America Motorsport Manager: “Seeing the M235iR represent almost half the field in TC this weekend validates the concept of the car and the decision to bring it to the US. We’re very excited to support so many BMW teams and drivers, and couldn’t be happier with the results of the weekend. PWC TC is racing as we love it and we are looking forward to a great season.”
Rounds 3 and 4 of the 2017 PWC Touring Car Championship will be held at Canadian Tire Motorsport Park, in Bowmanville, Ontario, Canada on May 20 and 21.
BMW of North America Customer Racing
BMW of North America’s customer racing program supports privateer BMW drivers across North America with racing cars, engineering, parts and contingency. During 2016, BMW NA supported the M235i Racing, BMW Z4 GT3 and BMW M6 GT3 platforms. For more information, please contact Victor Leleu, BMW NA Motorsport Manager at email@example.com.
BMW Group In America
BMW of North America, LLC has been present in the United States since 1975. Rolls-Royce Motor Cars NA, LLC began distributing vehicles in 2003. The BMW Group in the United States has grown to include marketing, sales, and financial service organizations for the BMW brand of motor vehicles, including motorcycles, the MINI brand, and the Rolls-Royce brand of Motor Cars; DesignworksUSA, a strategic design consultancy in California; a technology office in Silicon Valley and various other operations throughout the country. BMW Manufacturing Co., LLC in South Carolina is part of BMW Group’s global manufacturing network and is the exclusive manufacturing plant for all X5 and X3 Sports Activity Vehicles and X6 and X4 Sports Activity Coupes. The BMW Group sales organization is represented in the U.S. through networks of 341 BMW passenger car and BMW Sports Activity Vehicle centers, 152 BMW motorcycle retailers, 127 MINI passenger car dealers, and 36 Rolls-Royce Motor Car dealers. BMW (US) Holding Corp., the BMW Group’s sales headquarters for North America, is located in Woodcliff Lake, New Jersey.
The BMW Group
With its three brands BMW, MINI and Rolls-Royce, the BMW Group is the world’s leading premium manufacturer of automobiles and motorcycles and also provides premium financial and mobility services. As a global company, the BMW Group operates 31 production and assembly facilities in 14 countries and has a global sales network in more than 140 countries.
In 2016, the BMW Group sold approximately 2.367 million cars and 145,000 motorcycles worldwide. The profit before tax was approximately € 9.67 billion on revenues amounting to € 94.16 billion. As of 31 December 2016, the BMW Group had a workforce of 124,729 employees.
The success of the BMW Group has always been based on long-term thinking and responsible action. The company has therefore established ecological and social sustainability throughout the value chain, comprehensive product responsibility and a clear commitment to conserving resources as an integral part of its strategy.