BMW confirms the all-season GTP line-up, reveals the colors – Sportscar365

Photo: Sam Cobb / BMW

BMW M Motorsport has confirmed the all-season driver line-up for its two-part RLL GTP team at next year’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, while also unveiling the BMW M Hybrid V8 racing paint job.

Connor De Phillippi, Nick Yelloly, Augusto Farfus and Phillip Eng have been appointed full-time drivers and NTT IndyCar Series star Colton Herta will be one of the additional drivers during their Rolex 24 race debut in Daytona in January.

The BMW M Hybrid V8 made its public racing debut on Thursday evening at the premiere at the Petersen Museum in Los Angeles.

The guests of the event were BMW M CEO Franciscus van Meel, BMW M Motorsport CEO Andreas Roos, IMSA CEO John Doonan and Team RLL co-owners Bobby Rahal, David Letterman and Patrick Lanigan.

De Phillippi and Yelloly will be driving BMW No. 24, and Eng and Farfus will be flying BMW No. 25 throughout the WeatherTech Championship season in 2023.

“Since the announcement of the GTP project, it has been my dream to be part of the program,” said De Phillippi, who completed the first lap of the car in Varano in July. “I know we are all eager to bring BMW the championship results at the highest level of IMSA competition.”

Yelloly added, “After my first [IMSA] for the Daytona and Sebring trips, it’s fantastic to be part of the entire season in North America – and in this amazing car. For me, it’s a return to my roots with high-downforce racing cars. I’m really looking forward to this. ”

Meanwhile, Eng said it was “an honor” to be given the opportunity to drive the car all season.

The German manufacturer has tested nearly a dozen in Europe before settling on four pilots to lead its steering responsibilities next year.

“I will never forget my first laps in the BMW M Hybrid V8,” said Ing. “It is a purebred racing car with great performance and power. It reminds me of the Class 1 cars in the DTM. Driving it on the IMSA racetracks will be great fun. ”

Meanwhile, BMW legend Farfus will move from his Michelin Endurance Cup duties in recent seasons to a full-time WeatherTech Championship next year.

“It is a unique opportunity and a great honor for me to represent BMW M Motorsport at the highest level once again and to be part of the launch of a new era of motorsport,” said Farfus.

“This exciting project is one of the highlights of my career. The opposition is very strong and we will learn a lot in the first year. However, I think we have everything to achieve good results right from the start. We are definitely working hard to make that possible. ”

Sebring marked the beginning of the American test program

The Dallara chassis prototype kicked off the testing program in the United States earlier this week at the Sebring International Raceway and was confirmed to take part in two IMSA-approved tests at the Michelin Raceway Road Atlanta and Daytona International Raceway in October and December, respectively.

BMW has also planned additional private and group tours in North America in preparation for the Rolex 24.

The transition to testing in the States follows numerous tours in Italy and Spain, including testing at the Motorland Aragon and Circuit de Catalunya-Barcelona.

“We’ve been working very hard in recent months to get the BMW M Hybrid V8 ready for racing in no time,” said Roos. “[It’s a] beautiful racing car.

“Our job now is to get it done quickly. We are working towards that goal day by day and we are sure we will be ready in January when we really get to work for Daytona for the first time. ”

BMW M Team RLL Team Principal Bobby Rahal added: “We understand the scope of the challenge ahead and look forward to meeting it. As before, the level of collaboration and teamwork was enormous.

“Being on the ground floor certainly gives our staff a good insight into the car right from the start.

“I learned a long time ago that you soften your expectations. Yes, you have hope and you know that you will ultimately succeed, but as with any new car program, there are unforeseen circumstances that may work in your favor or against you. For RLL, it’s a matter of preparing for both.

Jan Dagys is the founder and editor-in-chief of Sportscar365. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsport correspondent for and the SPEED Channel and contributed to numerous other motorsport publications around the world. Contact Jan

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