The achievements and lifelong contribution of outgoing BMW Team Schnitzer Team Principal Charly Lamm were celebrated at BMW’s end of season review event in Munich last night.
In an emotional tribute Lamm, who is stepping down after almost four decades as head of the team, was presented with the bonnet of a BMW M6 GT3 signed by all of the evening’s guests by BMW Motorsport Director Jens Marquardt:
“I would like to thank Charly for his dedication, passion and accomplishments for the BMW brand as the team principal of Schnitzer Motorsport,” said Marquardt.
“No-one embodies our unique success story in touring car and GT racing better than Charly. The fact that he was able to get the win once again with his team at the FIA GT World Cup in Macau as he bid farewell to the pit wall was a real motorsport fairy tale.”
The evening also celebrated the successes of privateer efforts running with BMW machinery with the 2018 BMW Sports Trophy for drivers awarded to VLN Champions Danny Brink, Philipp Leisen and Christopher Rink.
Brink, Leisen and Rink, who contested the entire VLN Endurance Championship season together, clinched victory in the BMW Sports Trophy driver standings and a prize of 25,500 euros each with a total of 570 points. The trio celebrated six class wins in their BMW 325i in nine VLN races, and saw them claim the overall win in the VLN at the end of the season. Last year, the three BMW drivers finished in third place in the BMW Sports Trophy rankings, behind the successful GT4 duo of Ricardo van der Ende and Max Koebolt.
“I have attended this event since I drove for Matthias Unger and his team,” said Rink. “First place was close a couple of times. Being at the top now, after all the success we had on the racetrack this season, is as good as it can get.” Brink said: “Winning the BMW Sports Trophy award is a dream come true. Many thanks to BMW for this event and the great customer support.“ Leisen added: “Just the same as it has been every year, the competition was very tough. Probably the bonus points we received for our VLN title made the difference and allowed us to take P1 this time.”
The teams title went to US outfit Classic BMW ending a four year streak for Pixum Team Adrenalin Motorsport.
Their success in the TC class of Pirelli World Challenge and at other events with both their M235i Racing and BMW M4 GT4 saw a total of 20 podiums as well as the team title in the Pirelli World Challenge TC class. Behind them were 3Y Technology and Securtal Sorg Rennsport in second and third places.
“The whole BMW family inspires us to give our very best in every single race with our BMW cars and to keep on fighting, even if there are problems during a race,” said team owner Eric Maas.
“There are so many people to thank, but let me point out my team principal Toby Grahovec, who is the persons who is most responsible for this success.”
The “BMW Customer Racing Win of the Year” was awarded for the first time. Over the past two weeks, social media users around the world were asked to pick their favourite of ten racing highlights from the year via BMW Motorsport’s Facebook, Twitter and Instagram channels.
With 27 per cent of the votes submitted, victory went to Walkenhorst Motorsport. The team won the 24-hour race at Spa-Francorchamps (BEL) with the BMW M6 GT3 in July.
BMW Sports Trophy Driver Standings:
1 Danny Brink – 570
Philipp Leisen – 570
Christopher Rink – 570
4 Max Koebolt – 507
5 Simon Knap – 431
6 Yannick Mettler – 390
7 Sylvain Debs – 390
Gwenaël Delomier – 390
9 Karl Wittmer – 384
10 Heiko Eichenberg – 376
11 Torsten Kratz – 362
12 Fran Rueda – 336
Andrés Saravia – 336
14 Toby Grahovec – 326
15 Gabriele Piana – 318
16 Pavel Lefterov – 318
17 Matt Travis – 316
18 Miguel Christovao – 312
19 James Clay – 310
20 Yannick Fübrich – 308
21 Michael Schrey – 303
22 Jack Mitchell – 288
23 Razvan Umbrarescu – 288
24 David Griessner – 270
25 Michael Fischer – 269
BMW Sports Trophy Team Standings:
1 Classic BMW – 1,020
2 3Y Technology – 979
3 Securtal Sorg Rennsport – 956
4 Pixum Team Adrenalin Motorsport – 923
5 Hofor Racing – 746
6 RN Vision STS Racing Team – 600
7 Walkenhorst Motorsport – 520
8 MDM Motorsport – 519
9 BMW Team Teo Martín – 504
10 BMW Team Studie – 500