BMW UK, in partnership with West Surrey Racing (WSR), has announced a three-car team that will again bid for victory of the 2017 British Touring Car Championship.
The announcement of Team BMW marks the German OEM’s return to the UK’s highest-watched domestic race series as a manufacturer team. It has been 21 years since the marque last contested the series in this manner, when BMW Team Schnitzer fielded a BMW 320i line-up.
“The BTCC is one of the most significant race series in the UK and has a huge and enthusiastic following,” stated Graeme Grieve, CEO of BMW Group UK. “With a history of success and the continuous support of WSR for the past decade, we are delighted to step up as a Manufacturer Team again after 21 years.”
BMW UK’s significant financial investment in the BTCC team includes the funding of technical developments on all fronts, focused on the very latest BMW engine derivative.
The BMW relationship with Dick Bennetts’ Sunbury-based operation in the BTCC was established in 2007, where they claimed both the Independent Drivers and Teams Championships. They repeated the feat in 2008 and went on to take the overall BTCC Drivers’ title in 2009, and added a driver and team double crown in 2014.
“I reckon that working together successfully as motorsport partners for ten years is the equivalent of a lifelong marriage,” added Bennetts. “It is a tribute to BMW’s product and commitment, and we are delighted to once again represent the marque as they return with increased commitment as a Manufacturer in the BTCC.
Entering the 2017 season of the super-competitive BTCC, Team BMW is bullish of its chances in the series thanks to the ‘heavyweight success behind it, increased financial and technical investment from BMW UK, the skills, consistency and superb track record of West Surrey Racing, and a driver trio that collectively represents the most powerful line-up in this year’s BTCC series’.