Valencia (ES), 24th January 2013. BMW Motorsport has successfully completed the first DTM test week of the year in Valencia (ES). Between Tuesday and Thursday, BMW works drivers Bruno Spengler (CA), Augusto Farfus (BR), Andy Priaulx (GB), Martin Tomczyk (DE) and Marco Wittmann (DE) were on duty at the wheel of the BMW M3 DTM. Only on Thursday morning did heavy rain interrupt the test programme.
Timo Glock (DE), who has 91 Formula One starts to his name, and BMW Sports Trophy winner Thomas Biagi (IT) were making their debuts in a DTM car. Biagi received the test as reward for his first place in BMW’s privateer competition in 2012. Newcomers BMW Team MTEK also took to the track for the first time in Valencia.
The tests at the 4.005-kilometre “Circuit de la Comunitat” heralded the start of the hottest phase of preparations for the new DTM season, in which BMW Motorsport will line up as defending champions in the driver, team and manufacturer competitions. The first race will take place in Hockenheim (DE) on 5th May 2013.
Jens Marquardt (BMW Motorsport Director):
“Everyone at BMW Motorsport and all of our teams were desperately looking forward to the first test of the year. Our new team, BMW Team MTEK, enjoyed its first outing and Marco Wittmann took to the track as a regular DTM driver for the first time. Furthermore, Timo Glock and BMW Sports Trophy winner Thomas Biagi also made their debuts at the wheel of the BMW M3 DTM. That was a successful start to our preparations. However, we still have a lot of work ahead of us before the DTM season-opener on 5th May. At any rate, it is nice the new season is gaining momentum.”
“As soon as I stepped out of the plane in Valencia, I was immediately looking forward to getting back in the car after the long break. It was a very special feeling to drive out of the garage with the number one on my car for the first time. On the opening few laps it felt as though I had never got out of the car after the 2012 finale in Hockenheim.”
“It is good to be back in the car after such a long time. I can hardly wait for the season to finally get underway. The test in Valencia was very productive, even though we were not able to take full advantage of the time due to the heavy rain on Thursday morning.”
“It is just nice to be back behind the wheel of the BMW M3 DTM. I finished the 2012 season with a good result in Hockenheim, and I would obviously like to continue where I left off in the new season. The test here in Valencia was a very promising start.”
“The BMW M3 DTM feels just as good as it did last season. Although the test programme was affected a bit by some gusty winds, we were able to try everything we wanted. I am very confident and looking forward to the next stage of our preparations.”
“The first test went well. I am happy and am delighted to have made my debut as a regular driver in the BMW M3 DTM. The car does not feel any different to drive than the one I had last year as test and development driver. However, the prospect of lining up with this car at a DTM race in Hockenheim in May made this first outing rather special for me.”
“My first impressions of the BMW M3 DTM were very positive. It did not take me long to get used to the car, and I came to understand it better with every lap. The fact that we were able to test in all conditions, from wet to dry, was perfect. I have been given a sensational welcome by everyone in the BMW Motorsport team, and even knew a few people from my time as a test driver for the BMW Sauber F1 Team.”
“Ever since I first heard that BMW Motorsport was returning to the DTM, I have dreamed of one day driving this BMW M3 DTM. That dream came true today. I knew I would enjoy this moment. But now, after 66 laps at the wheel of this unbelievable car, I’m simply speechless. I would like to say a big thank you to BMW Motorsport for giving me this chance, and for the great support that privateers like me receive through the BMW Sports Trophy.”