BMW M4 GT3 drivers Dries Vanthoor and Maxime Martin got their season off to a flying start with victory in the opening race of the Nürburgring Endurance Series. The duo piloted the #99 BMW M4 GT3 to the top spot of the podium after an exciting and gruelling four-hour race on the Nordschleife circuit.
Starting from third on the grid, Vanthoor and Martin kept their focus on the better-placed #99 car, forcing the second ROWE Racing car, the #98 BMW M4 GT3, out of the race. The duo managed to secure a comfortable 6.5-second lead by the time Vanthoor crossed the finish line, claiming the top spot on their first appearance with BMW M4 GT3 in the NLS.
Meanwhile, the BMW Junior Team, consisting of Dan Harper, Max Hesse, and Neil Verhagen, finished in fifth place after starting from ninth on the grid. The team faced a slight collision that delayed them in the pack, ultimately hindering their chances of a podium finish.
Jakub Giermaziak secured pole position for Walkenhorst Motorsport, but his team-mate Andy Soucek lost several positions at the start. The #34 BMW M4 GT3 was running fifth until shortly before the end of the race but was forced to retire due to undisclosed reasons. BMW M works drivers Jake Dennis and Thomas Neubauer, sharing driving duties in the #35 car, finished 39th after experiencing technical issues.
The Nürburgring Endurance Series is a nine-race championship that spans six months and covers more than 1500km of the Nordschleife track. The endurance racing event is one of the most challenging and gruelling races in the world, with cars facing a total of 26km and 73 corners of the iconic circuit.
BMW Motorsport Head Andreas Roos congratulated the entire crew on their fantastic start to the season on the Nordschleife, praising the team’s winter preparations. He also congratulated Martin and Vanthoor on their debut win in the BMW M4 GT3.
ROW Racing team principal Hans-Peter Naundorf was thrilled with the team’s victory, calling the race a perfect start to the season. He credited the duo for doing a perfect job on the demanding circuit, adding that they had made the right decision to focus on the better-placed car.
In the SP10 class, the new BMW M4 GT4 started the season with a victory as FK Performance Motorsport and the trio of Michael Schrey, Thorsten Wolter, and Nick Wüstenhagen triumphed. The victory added to BMW’s success at the event and bodes well for the manufacturer ahead of the upcoming 24-hour race.
BMW got their Nürburgring Endurance Series campaign off to an excellent start, with Vanthoor and Martin securing victory in the opening race. The BMW Junior Team put in a solid performance to finish fifth, while Walkenhorst Motorsport’s #34 BMW M4 GT3 was forced to retire. The next race in the NLS is scheduled for April 24, and BMW will be hoping to continue their winning form in the highly competitive endurance racing series.