BMW Motorsport News – Issue 29/16.
Whether in the DTM, the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, or countless other championships: week after week BMW teams and drivers around the world do battle for points, victories and titles. Away from the track too, members of the large BMW Motorsport family around the world are also creating headlines. The “BMW Motorsport News” allows us to regularly summarise all the action for you in a compact and informative manner. This way, you are always up to speed.
24 Hours Spa: BMW triumphs at the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps.
Maxime Martin (BE), Alexander Sims (GB) and Philipp Eng (AT) won the 24-hour race in Spa-Francorchamps (BE) for ROWE Racing. It was the first win for the BMW M6 GT3 on its first appearance in the Ardennes. Martin had to wait a while for his first victory at his home event: This was the tenth time that he had contested one of the most important GT3 races of the season. With the win, he followed in the footsteps of his father Jean-Michel, who also won the 24-hour race at the "Circuit de Spa-Francorchamps" for BMW. Speaking in an interview, Maxime Martin reveals the significance of this success in his career as a racing driver.
Three questions for... Maxime Martin.
Maxime, congratulations on your win at the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps. The race means a great deal to you and your family. How does it feel to win here?
Maxime Martin: "I've dreamed of being successful here since I was a child. But I've usually been unlucky in the 24-hour race. Which is why I am over the moon to have finally won. It is the seventh win for my family, which is really impressive. I still can't quite believe that I did it. Naturally, as a Belgian it is very special to me. The fans here were fantastic once again. Each year it is incredible to see how many spectators are here, how much they know about motorsport and how much they love this sport and this race in particular. To win in front of a crowd like this feels really good. I'll remember this feeling for a very long time."
How significant is this win in your career?
Martin: "It is the best win of my life. I have already enjoyed success in the DTM, but this here is another absolute highlight. This is the race I have contested most often. I came here with my father as a young child, and now I was able to emulate him – and with extremely fierce competition. The 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps is my favourite race, even more so now than before. Standing on the podium, lifting up the cup and looking into the crowd is incredible. I will definitely cherish these memories. It's superb."
While we're talking about family: You're getting married soon and are becoming a father for the first time. How are you approaching this new phase of your life?
Martin: "Naturally it is very important to me. My family means a great deal to me. Now that I am starting my own family, this feeling has been enhanced. Maybe there will be more racing drivers from the Martin family in the future. If I ever experience a day as a father like the one I experienced with my father today, I will be a very happy man. I have always had my whole family and close friends around me throughout my career to date, and having them here today was very important to me."
BTCC: Podium success for the BMW 125i M Sport in Snetterton.
The West Surrey Racing team remains on the road to success in the British Touring Car Championship (BTCC). Rob Collard (GB) celebrated a spot on the podium with his BMW 125i M Sport in Snetterton (GB) at the sixth race weekend of the season. He narrowly missed out on the podium when he finished in fourth in the second race, but crossed the finish line in second place in the final race of the weekend. He finished 16th in the first race. His team-mate Sam Tordoff (GB) finished seventh and eighth, before suffering a retirement. Jack Goff (GB) in the third BMW 125i M Sport finished in eleventh and 13th place. He also retired early in one race.
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