Maxime Martin took a BMW Z4 GT3 across the line for its first podium result at the Nurburgring 24 Hours, finishing second in a race affected by rain and fog.
At the end of the race, which was split by a red flag period lasting over nine hours, the #25 BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS car of Martin, Yelmer Buurman, Andrea Piccini and Richard Goransson narrowly missed out on what would have been an historic 20th Nurburgring 24 Hours win for BMW.
There was also a second top-ten finish for BMW, with the #20 BMW Z4 GT3 finishing the race in sixth overall, while the third and final finishing BMW came home in 17th. The two remaining works-backed BMWs failed to finish, with accidents forcing them out of the race.
“This Nürburgring 24 Hours was once again packed with excitement – and featured an absolutely sensational final stint from Maxime Martin, who was able to overtake two rivals out on the track in the last few laps,” said BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt.
“Our race was initially blighted by the unlucky collision involving the two BMW Team Schubert cars, and then came the weather-inflicted stoppage during the night – and finally the joy at second place for BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS. Over the past 24 hours, the legendary Nordschleife has once again shown us exactly what makes this circuit so special and so infamous.
“I am delighted for Bas Leinders’ team and the four drivers in the number 25 BMW Z4 GT3. Back in 2012, BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS narrowly missed out on a top-three finish in the Green Hell, and now it has its podium. The crew produced a flawless race, as did the drivers, so they really deserve second place.
“The way the number 20 BMW Team Schubert car fought back was also impressive. The team did not allow the huge misfortune at the start of the race to get them down, and battled back superbly to finish sixth. However, I would obviously like to thank all the many privateer BMW teams and the fans at the Ring, who defied the miserable conditions to once again produce a fantastic race and a unique atmosphere.”
Further down the field, there were multiple class victories for privateer run BMWs, taking the total number of BMW class victories at the event to an outstanding 162.