BMW ready for Spa 24 Hours return

by James Broomhead

BMW and Schnitzer Motorsport will try to add another 24 hour crown to their collection, already having won at the Nurburgring this year, when they start the Spa 24 Hours with a two car entry in the GTN class.

This weekend (July 31-August 1) is the 63rd running to the endurance race in the Ardennes. BMW and Schnitzer have a strong history in the event, the marque taking credit for 21 wins with Schnitzer taking the glory on five occasions, most recently in 1995.

The team, however, had entered the race on far more recent occasion, their last visit coming in 2004 when Dirk Muller, Jorg Muller and Hans-Joachim Stuck won the GT2 class. That year, like this, the team had also taken overall victory around the Nordschleife.

The two Mullers return as part of the six man driving line-up for this year's race. Jorg will share the no.78 with Pedro Lamy and Uwe Alzen – three quarters of the winning team in May, Lamy “looking forward” to rejoining the team having driven for Peugeot at Le Mans – BMW's other 24 hour outing this season. Dirk Muller will join his namesakes Adorf and Werner in taking stints in the no.79 M3 E92.

“In many regards the Spa-Francorchamps circuit is similar to the Nürburgring-Nordschleife,” explains Dirk Adorf. “However, you can take a far more aggressive approach in Spa. Blanchimont and Eau Rouge are two points on the circuit where you have to summon up all your courage as a driver and rely on the perfect set-up of your car.”

“It goes without saying that fitness also plays a major role in Spa. However, if you are at one with the car and feel comfortable behind the wheel then you will not only be quick, but also stay cool in the truest sense of the word.”

“Spa will be the most demanding race of the year,” concurs Jorg Muller. “It is an incredibly tough race and involves driving for 24 hours on a Grand Prix circuit. There are a lot of quick corners and it is very undulating. This circuit has always been a big challenge, and that will be the case again in 2010.”

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