BimmerWorld Gears Up for Lime Rock

July 20th, 2016

BimmerWorld-Gears-Up-for-Lime-Rock

Gearing is on the minds of the BimmerWorld Racing crew as it prepares its pair of turbocharged BMW F30 328i cars for Saturday’s IMSA Continental Tire SportsCar Challenge (ICTSC) race at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Conn.

James Clay, team owner and one of its four drivers, said “I know our F30 cars are coming along well, but our performance seems so dependent on gearing and our ability to make that 2-liter turbo spool up in the power band and stay in the boost on critical sections. I think it will be a solid weekend for us, but we’ll know once we get there and get a read on the car.”

Clay and Tyler Cooke will share the team’s No. 84 OPTIMA Batteries BMW 328i while its No. 81 BimmerWorld BMW 328i will be driven by Jerry Kaufman and Kyle Tilley.

The ICTSC will use Lime Rock’s 1.53-mile, seven-turn road course without the chicane. It’s the shortest course on the schedule, so qualifying well will be critical. Clay has managed to put the No. 84 on the pole twice this season, including the most recent race, so the BimmerWorld F30s have the pace to make it happen.

The 27 Street Tuner cars entered in the 35-car race will have only two 45-minute practice sessions at 10:05 a.m. and 1 p.m. on Friday before they qualify at 3:25 p.m. Fans will get to meet the drivers during the fan walk on the false grid from 8:30 a.m. to 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, and the 2-hour-and-30-minute race starts at 10 a.m.

Live video streaming and live timing and scoring will be available on imsa.com and imsa.tv. The television broadcast will be on FOX Sports 1 on a tape-delayed basis on Sunday, July 31 at 12 p.m. All times are EDT.

James Clay, team owner and driver, No. 84 OPTIMA Batteries BMW 328i (F30 chassis):
Tell us about your history at Lime Rock, and what you think of the track.
“As a team, we’ve won at Lime Rock in various series a few times, so I know we’re capable there.”

After a smaller field at Mosport, this weekend you’ll be on just a 1.5-mile track with 34 other drivers. How much do you think traffic will play into the race outcome?
“I think the biggest factor is staying on the lead lap, and I would expect that to be a minority number. We would have to have a strong gap to pull out a green-flag pit stop, and so many little things can happen. But we have good cars and good drivers across the board, so, barring oddities, we should be ready to compete for the win when the final sprint gets started.”

You won the pole at the last race. How much does winning a pole get you pumped up for the race?
“The Mosport pole was my second of the season and our third for the car. I love that we have pace and promise in the car, but I am hoping Lime Rock is a bit better suited for our gearing so we can convert one of these poles to our first win.”

Tyler Cooke, driver, No. 84 OPTIMA Batteries BMW 328i (F30 chassis):
Tell us about your history at Lime Rock, and what you think of the track.
“I’ve raced at Lime Rock for going on six years now, and I love the track. It’s where I got my first win in cars in 2010 with the Skip Barber series. Lime Rock is a track that looks easy, with not a lot going on, but each corner is unique. At the uphill you have to trail off the brakes just right and get on the power just right or you’ll end up tagging the wall on the outside or inside of the track. West Bend is one of the corners where if you turn in too early or too late, it costs you. The downhill is a corner that you have to do right for the run down the front straight.”

What is it going to take to capture the ST championship?
“We just need to stay consistent. The Canadian Tire Motorsport Park race wasn’t the best for us and set us back a bit, but we’ve had a good car at Lime Rock the last few years. The guys have been working hard between races to make some things we learned at Watkins Glen and in Canada better for Lime Rock.”

After a smaller field at Mosport, this weekend you’ll be on just a 1.5-mile track with 34 other drivers. How much do you think traffic will play into the race outcome?
“Lime Rock is like an oval track. Lapped traffic plays a big role whether it is the GS cars coming by us or lapping ST cars that are at the tail of the field. One reason why I like Lime Rock is because it’s a very hard place to pass, but every year there’s a lot of hard racing and having to manage lapped traffic as well as your own position is part of it.”

Jerry Kaufman, driver, No. 81 BimmerWorld BMW 328i (F30 chassis):
Tell us about your history at Lime Rock, and what you think of the track.
“Lime Rock is a very cool track. Because the track is so short you would think that it has to be easy, but it isn’t. I’ve only been there once. I did the M Track Days experience put together by BMW North America. I was able to drive the new M2 and the current M3 around the track for a few laps. The cars were awesome, but it was clear to me that this track is going to be difficult for passing. I think qualifying well here is going to be very important.”

Have you done any iRacing or other simulators with the Lime Rock circuit? If so, how does that help you learn a new circuit?
“iRacing is a great resource for learning many of the tracks we race on. IMSA puts together fun, jammed-packed weekends for the spectators by having many different types of cars compete. I love sharing the track with the GTD cars and Prototypes, but it means that we don’t get much track time to practice. We need to make every second of practice count, so it is imperative that we know the track very well, even before the transporters roll in. Simulators and onboard video are great, but there is no replacement for real seat time.”

Kyle Tilley, driver, No. 81 BimmerWorld BMW 328i (F30 chassis):
Tell us about your history at Lime Rock, and what you think of the track.
“I have only been to Lime Rock Park once before, but we won the race! It would be nice to continue that.”

Lime Rock is said to be like an oval with a chicane. How well suited do you feel the BMW 328i (F30) is for the short Lime Rock circuit?
“I think Lime Rock should suit the F30, as there are no really slow, tight corners like Turn 5 at Mosport, but we’ll see. It’s certainly a busy little circuit.”

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ABOUT: BimmerWorld is renowned as a leader in BMW aftermarket and tuning expertise, and competes in the Continental Tire Series with a pair of BMW 328is (F30) where the Virginia-based outfit has become a routine winner and Championship contender.

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