BMW confirms full-season GTP lineup, reveals livery – Sportscar365

Photo: Sam Cobb / BMW

BMW M Motorsport has confirmed the full-season driver lineup for the GTP class attempt at next year’s IMSA WeatherTech Sportscar Championship driven by its two-car team RLL, as well as unveiling the BMW M Hybrid V8 race livery.

NTT IndyCar Series star Colton Herta along with Conor de Filippi, Nick Yellowley, Augusto Farfus and Philip England have been named full-time drivers for the car’s race debut at the Rolex 24 in Daytona in January.

The BMW M Hybrid V8 made its public debut in racing colors during a launch event at the Peterson Museum in Los Angeles on Thursday evening.

Guests at the event included BMW M CEO Franciscus Van Meil, BMW M Motorsport Head Andreas Rouge, IMSA President John Doonan and Team RLL co-owners Bobby Rahal, David Letterman and Patrick Lannigan.

For the full WeatherTech Championship season in 2023, De Filippi and Yellowlee will operate the number 24 BMW, with England and Farfus in the number 25 car.

“Since the announcement of the GTP project, it has been a dream of mine to be part of the programme,” said De Filippi, who turned the car’s first lap at Varano in July. “I know we are all looking forward to delivering championship results for BMW at the top level of IMSA competition.”

Yellowley said: “After my first” [IMSA] Outings at Daytona and Sebring, now competing all season in North America is fantastic – and in this awesome car. For me, it’s a return to my roots with high-downforce race cars. I am really looking forward to it.”

England, meanwhile, said it was an “honour” to be given the opportunity of a full-season drive.

The German manufacturer tested about a dozen in Europe before deciding on four pilots to lead driving duties the following year.

“I will never forget my first lap in the BMW M Hybrid V8,” said England. “It’s a great race car with a huge amount of performance and power. It reminds me of class 1 cars in DTM. It would be great fun to drive it on an IMSA racetrack.”

BMW legend Farfus, meanwhile, will step down from Michelin Endurance Cup-only duties in recent season to full-time WeatherTech Championship competition next year.

“It is a unique opportunity and a great honor for me to represent BMW M Motorsport again at the top level and be involved in the beginning of this new era of motorsport,” Farfus said.

“This exciting project is one of the highlights of my career. The opposition is very strong and we will learn a lot in our first year. However, I think we have everything we need to get good results from the very beginning. We Definitely working hard to make it possible.”

Sebring marks start of US testing program

The Dallara-chased prototype began its US-based testing program at Sebring International Raceway earlier this week and was confirmed to take part in two IMSA-sanctioned tests at Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta and Daytona International Raceway in October and December respectively .

BMW also scheduled additional private and group tours in North America in the build-up to the Rolex 24.

The transition to testing statesside comes after several outings in Italy and Spain, including tests at Motorland Aragon and the Circuit de Catalunya-Barcelona.

“We have worked very hard in recent months to get the BMW M Hybrid V8 ready for racing in a short amount of time,” Roos said. ,[It’s a] Beautiful race car.

“Now it is our job to speed it up. We are working towards achieving this goal day after day and we are confident that we will be ready in January when we first go into business in Daytona.

Bobby Rahal, Principal, BMW M Team RLL, said: “We understand the scope of the challenge before us and look forward to meeting it. As in the past, the level of collaboration and teamwork has been tremendous.

“Being on the ground floor definitely gives our personnel a good insight into the car right from the start.

“I learned a long time ago that you hold onto your expectations. Yes, you have expectations and you know that you will eventually succeed, but, as with any new car program, there are unforeseen circumstances that can happen. Can work in your favor or can work against you. For RLL it is a matter of being prepared for either.

john degiso is the founder and editor-in-chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for and the SPEED channel and has contributed to many other motorsports publications around the world. contact john

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