BMW is optimistic about defending its 24 Hours of Daytona crown at the season-opening round of the IMSA SportsCar Championship on January 25th.
The Munich-based marque celebrated a highly-acclaimed victory at the iconic Florida endurance race last year when its BMW Team RLL team stormed to victory in the GTLM (GT Le Mans) class.
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BMW Team RLL will contest the 2020 series with two MOTUL BMW M8 GTEs, having announced the French company as their new oil partner for the forthcoming season. Team Principal Bobby Rahal is determined to build on BMW's recent success at Daytona.
“Our Daytona victory last year was a victory that was really earned across all aspects of the team and it was a proud moment for all of us,” said BMW Team RLL Team Principal Bobby Rahal.
“We have a difficult act to follow for this year, but I think that with it being one year on for the BMW M8 GTE and the improvements that were made over the course of last year and the off season, we’ve got to feel as optimistic as you can ever feel about a race of this length.”
“There are still a lot of question marks in terms of BMW's competition [at Daytona]. It will be a very tough race but as we saw last year, a lot can happen, and we just need to make sure we are in a good spot to take advantage of the opportunities that present themselves.”
BMW's new face at Daytona
John Edwards (USA) and Jesse Krohn (Finland) will contest the 2020 season in the No. 24 BMW M8 GTE car again and will receive support at Daytona from last year’s winner Augusto Farfus (Brazil) and Chaz Mostert (Australia).
The other three winners from last year – Connor De Phillipi (USA), Philipp Eng (Austria) and Colton Herta (USA) – will pilot the No. 25 sister car. New to the team is Canada’s former BMW DTM driver Bruno Spengler, who will partner De Phillipi for the rest of the 2020 IMSA season.
Furthermore, BMW will also be represented in the GDT (GT Daytona) class at Daytona. The Turner Motorsport team will showcase the No. 96 BMW M6 GT3, driven by BMW works driver Jens Klingmann (Germany) and Bill Auberlen, Robby Foley and Dillon Machavern (all USA).
BMW’s German rivals Porsche recently confirmed its new 911 RSR would feature at Daytona, making its North American race debut.
When is the 24 Hours of Daytona and how can I watch?
The race gets underway on Saturday 25th January at 1.35pm local time (7.35pm CET). You can watch live outside the USA and Canada on IMSA’s official website.