This weekend Augusto Farfus heads into his second 24-hour race of the 2016 season when he races on the “Green Hell” in the Nürburgring 24 Hours. A former winner of the iconic event, his aim is to give the new BMW M6 GT3 its first 24 hour win as well as notching up the 20th outright victory for BMW at the event.
Alongside him in the number 18 Schubert Motorsport car will be his fellow BMW DTM driver Marcus Wittmann, Jörg Müller, who was with him when he won the event in 2010, and BMW Motorsport Junior Jesse Krohn. This will not be the first time this year the Brazilian has driven on the famous 25.378 kilometre Nürburgring-Nordschleife track, as he has been part of the team contesting the VLN races there as a warm up to the big event.
He is full of enthusiasm for the track and the whole experience ahead of him: “I think it is the most exciting 24 hour race on the planet. There are a lot of cars and a lot of fans, and for us this year is special as we are going there with a brand new car. It was great that this car has already got a good result after winning the third round of the VLN in the hands of my three team-mates, and this gives us hope for a great result.”
Looking back to what happened at the race 12 months ago, he said: “It was great putting the BMW Z4 on pole last year, but I was disappointed not to have won, as I think the car was capable of that. However, I suppose in such a race to come fourth wasn’t that bad.”
The one thing that cannot be controlled in the Eifel mountains is the weather, and over the years the drivers have experienced everything from snow, to sunshine, to fog to driving rain. “Hopefully we are going to have nice weather this year, but you never know as the Nordschleife is always special and not at all predictable. The great thing is the weather never puts the thousands of fans off. They are there for the show and they want to see the cars run. It is also great to see so many BMW fans cheering us on and I hope to make them proud of us.”
The line up of BMWs this year is as strong as ever, with Schubert Motorsport, Walkenhorst Motorsport and ROWE Racing each entering two of the cars that are powered by a 4.4 litre V8 engine with M TwinPower Turbo technology in the SP9 class. The provisional entry list for the event, which can be started by up to 200 cars, includes no less than 40 BMWs.
The first opportunity for practice in the run up to the race weekend will be on Thursday (26th May) from 15.45 to 17.25, but the first major session for Augusto and his team mates will be on Friday with the Top-30 Qualifying, that they have already secured a place in. The race, which last year was run over 156 laps, will begin at 15.30 on Saturday. This will be the 44th running of the event that was first held in 1970.