SRO GT4 America Sprint X – Road America 2021

Auberlen and Walker Jr. winning at Road America 2021

After almost three months of a break in the action, the BimmerWorld Racing team was eager to get back in the swing of things at Road America for the fourth event of the 2021 SRO GT4 America season. The drivers and cars were ready to get to work, but the weather had different plans and caused some delays in getting on track for practice Friday.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No. 34 Redline Oil BMW M4 GT4 at Road America

James Clay talking to team

Saturday’s weather was still damp but drying as the BimmerWorld trio of M4 GT4s rolled out of the pits for their qualifying sessions. Jon Miller in the GO Organic No. 94 qualified his M4 GT4 in sixth, James Clay in the OPTIMA Batteries / Racing To End Alzheimer’s No. 36 in eighth, and James Walker Jr. in the Red Line Oil No. 34 rounded out the team in eleventh. The second round of qualifying on a dry but green track surface had drivers a little more spread out looking for their fast laps. Bill Auberlen found speed right out of the gate and into a second-place qualifying position. Struggling to find clear track in the hectic qualifying session, the No. 36 of Nick Galante ended up in twentieth with Chandler Hull in the No. 94 coming in twenty-second.

No. 34 and No. 36 leaving the pits

BimmerWorld M4 GT4 on track at Road America

A few hours later, the three BimmerWorld M4 GT4s were lining up for the first race of the weekend, and from the second the green flag flew, it was non-stop excitement for all three drivers. Clay in the No. 36 managed to pick up several spots in the very first laps while Miller in the No. 94 ran up to second, battling it out in the top-three positions for several laps. For a while, it seemed the SRO broadcast was only covering BimmerWorld cars while all three were in intense battles for position and moving forward through the field.

BimmerWorld M4 GT4 ahead at Road America

BimmerWorld M4 GT4 leading the pack at Road America

The battles intensified while the pits opened up for driver changes, and once Bill Auberlen got behind the wheel of his Red Line Oil No. 34, he was a man on a mission driving straight to the front. Auberlen managed to get by and take the lead from Toby Grahovec in an awesome battle with 15 minutes to go, and never looked back. Galante, now behind the wheel of the No. 36, managed to keep up the same pace as Clay and was in a fierce battle for third place with the AMG of Christian Szymczak and the BMW of John Capestro-Dubets.

When the checkers waved on Saturday, it was a double podium for BimmerWorld with Auberlen and Walker Jr. taking first-place in the No. 34 Red Line Oil machine and Clay and Galante finishing in third in the No. 36 OPTIMA Batteries / Racing To End Alzheimer’s car.

Auberlen getting out of his BimmerWorld M4 GT4 after winning at Road America

BimmerWorld drivers on the podium at Road America in first and third

Sunday was another absolutely intense hour of non-stop battles among a very competitive field of GT4 cars. It was Auberlen’s turn to take the green in the No. 34 from P2. Galante and Hull started further back but made up several positions in just a few short minutes of racing, with Galante driving from twentieth to twelfth in the first two laps under green-flag conditions.  

SRO GT4 America cars on track at Road America

BimmerWorld M4 GT4 at speed at Road America

With 22 minutes to go, a full-course caution came out for an accident at the kink which was just inside the pit window, allowing the front part of the field enough time to come in for their driver changes. This allowed James Walker Jr. to jump into the No. 34 and remain in the top three while the other two BimmerWorld cars of Clay and Miller weren’t as fortunate and got caught on the wrong side of this caution for driver swaps. The clock kept ticking while SRO tried to get everyone back in the correct order for the restart, and with only seven minutes to go, they went back to green. 

BimmerWorld M4 GT4 going fast at Road America

BimmerWorld M4 GT4 chasing another BMW at Road America

Finishing positions for Sunday’s race was Auberlen/Walker Jr. in fourth, Clay/Galante in twenty-third, and Hull/Miller had to retire the car due to a mechanical issue nine laps from the end.

No. 36 BimmerWorld M4 GT4 hustling at Road America

The weekend was a positive one overall and just what the team needed to knock the rust off from being away from SRO for several weeks. The next race is in just a couple of weeks at Watkins Glen on September 17-19, 2021.

FOLLOW BIMMERWORLD AT: https://www.facebook.com/bimmerworld

STAY UP TO DATE WITH BIMMERWORLD NEWS AT: http://www.bimmerworldracing.com

ABOUT: BimmerWorld is renowned as a leader in BMW aftermarket and tuning expertise, with operations spanning from stock, aftermarket, performance, and racing parts sales and development through racing from club to professional levels. BimmerWorld Racing competes primarily with the BMW Motorsport M4 GT4 in North America in both SRO and IMSA Championships, where the Virginia-based outfit has become a frequent winner and championship contender.

SRO GT4 America Sprint X – Round 2 at Circuit of the Americas 2021

SRO GT4 America Sprint X - Round 2 at Circuit of the Americas 2021

BimmerWorld Racing rolled into Austin, TX for Round Two of the GT4X season looking for solid results at a track with past racing success. The cars and drivers were ready to get down to business on track, but the weather had other plans, and rain was on the forecast throughout practice and qualifying.

 

 

 

 

 

No. 36 BimmerWorld M4 GT4

No. 34 BimmerWorld Red Line Oils M4 GT4 at COTA

With a field of almost 40 GT4 cars scrambling to find speed on the damp track, it was hard to get a clean lap to show the pace of the BimmerWorld cars. By the time the track was starting to dry, it was too late to put down a fast lap, resulting in a starting position of P7 for the TAC Energy/GO Organic No. 94 of Chandler Hull and Jon Miller, P11 for the OPTIMA Batteries/Racing To End Alzheimer’s No. 36 of James Clay and Nick Galante, and P29 for the Red Line Oil No. 34 of Bill Auberlen and James Walker Jr. 

No. 94 BimmerWorld TAC Energy BMW M4 GT4

When the green flag dropped on Saturday, the track was dry and the sun was shining. The BimmerWorld Racing team was confident in the cars and ready to drive them to the front, knowing they all had far more speed than their qualifying positions implied. In the first two laps of the race, Clay managed to push his No. 36 M4 GT4 forward five positions to P6 while Miller pushed up three positions to P4, and Walker, Jr. went up several, placing that car well into the hunt from a mid-pack start.

No. 34 BimmerWorld Red Line Oils M4 GT4 mid-corner on three wheels

After a large impact into a wall by an Aston Martin, the race was under full-course caution for several minutes before the race was red-flagged with 37 minutes left on the clock. When racing restarted, the pit window opened with around 30 minutes to go. James Walker, Jr. was first to duck into pit lane, putting Bill Auberlen behind the wheel. Meanwhile, Miller and Clay continued pushing hard and made their way to second and third respectively before coming in for their driver changes.

No. 94 BimmerWorld TAC Energy M4 GT4 in the pits during a driver change

No. 36 BimmerWorld OPTIMA Batteries/Racing to End Alzheimer's M4 GT4

With Hull behind the wheel of the No. 94 GT4 and 20 minutes left on the clock, he rejoined the race in P2 overall, right in the thick of an all-BMW M4 GT4 train from first through fourth. While Hull and Galante were battling it out in the top-five, Auberlen was busy picking off multiple positions on every lap, running hard through the field and working the No. 34 up an amazing 24 positions by the end of the race. It was an absolutely amazing drive for the Red Line Oil No. 34. The duo of Chandler Hull and Jon Miller fought incredibly hard for their first win of the season in the GT4 Silver category.

BimmerWorld drivers Chandler Hull (left) and Jon Miller (right) after their win.

BimmerWorld drivers Chandler Hull and Jon Miller celebrating their win on the top step of the podium at COTA

The next race on the schedule is at BimmerWorld’s home track of VIRginia International Raceway on June 4-6. We always look forward to racing at VIR, but this time we’re especially excited because we’ll have fans back finally! We hope to see as many people as possible, as it’s been much too long without seeing all our friends, family, and fans at the track. Be sure to stop in and say hi if you’re around.  Information on purchasing tickets to the VIR race can be found below.

Purchase SRO GT World Challenge America VIR Tickets for June 4-6 here: https://virnow.com/events/

FOLLOW BIMMERWORLD AT: https://www.facebook.com/bimmerworld

STAY UP TO DATE WITH BIMMERWORLD NEWS AT: http://www.bimmerworldracing.com

ABOUT: BimmerWorld is renowned as a leader in BMW aftermarket and tuning expertise, with operations spanning from stock, aftermarket, performance, and racing parts sales and development through racing from club to professional levels. BimmerWorld Racing competes primarily with the BMW Motorsport M4 GT4 in North America in both SRO and IMSA Championships, where the Virginia-based outfit has become a frequent winner and championship contender.

SRO GT4 America Sprint X – Round 1 at Sonoma Raceway

SRO GT4 America Sprint X – Round 1 at Sonoma Raceway

The BimmerWorld Racing haulers pulled into Sonoma Raceway last week and rolled out a fresh-looking trio of BMW M4 GT4s ready to get to work. New liveries, new driver suits, and a couple of new drivers all looking to get this season started off right.

Walker, Jr. and Auberlen with new-livery M4 GT4

 

Galante and Clay with new-livery M4 GT4
 

Miller and Hull with new-livery M4 GT4 While Sonoma Raceway provides beautiful rolling hills, sunny skies, and perfect temperatures, it’s not without its own list of challenges. The infamously slippery track surface makes tire management throughout a 60-minute race just as important as overall speed. In the past, the BMW hasn’t produced the best results at Sonoma, so the team knew they had their work cut out for them. Team principal James Clay noted, “While it’s tough to start the season on the track you know is your worst, it allows us to really dig in and work on developing the car which will help us throughout the rest of the year.” With a qualifying position of P4 for the No.36 OPTIMA Batteries / Racing to End Alzheimer’s M4 GT4 driven by Clay and Nick Galante, it showed that the speed was there, they just had to make it last.

James Clay with helmet on, ready to race

BimmerWorld M4 GT4 during prep in paddock

During Saturday’s race, each of the three BimmerWorld cars managed to move up from their starting positions with the No.36 running P2 overall and into the TV spotlight while taking the lead just before pitting. As the race went on and the tires started to fall off, it was all about managing the car, and the ability to race hard up front slowly faded. When the checkers flew, Bill Auberlen and James Walker, Jr., had the best finishing position with P4 in the Red Line Oil No. 34. The No. 94 TAC Energy / GO Organic M4 GT4 of Chandler Hull and Jon Miller managed to carve their way through half of the field finishing up 15 positions, proving these new teammates worked well together and will be fun to watch in the upcoming races. Sunday’s race was a repeat of Saturday with drivers struggling to make the tires last and battling hard in the middle of the field.

Red Line Oil M4 GT4 at speed

 

 

TAC Energy M4 GT4 at turn-in
Racing to End Alzheimer's / OPTIMA Batteries M4 GT4 at speed

While the overall results of the weekend weren’t what they had hoped for, it allowed for gaining an immense amount of data on tire management. The team looks forward to taking the development work gained at Sonoma and having it pay off at some of their stronger tracks in the schedule where the BMW can stretch its legs.

FOLLOW BIMMERWORLD AT: https://www.facebook.com/bimmerworld

STAY UP TO DATE WITH BIMMERWORLD NEWS AT: http://www.bimmerworldracing.com

ABOUT: BimmerWorld is renowned as a leader in BMW aftermarket and tuning expertise, with operations spanning from stock, aftermarket, performance, and racing parts sales and development through racing from club to professional levels. BimmerWorld Racing competes primarily with the BMW Motorsport M4 GT4 in North America in both SRO and IMSA Championships, where the Virginia-based outfit has become a frequent winner and championship contender.

BimmerWorld Racing: 2021 SRO GT4 America Season Announcement

sro-2021-livery-trio-251w

BimmerWorld is proud to announce its return to the SRO Motorsport America series, bringing three BMW M4 GT4s to compete in GT4 America Sprint X for the 2021 season.

Despite the challenges endured by competitors throughout the 2020 season, team principal James Clay captured the drivers’ championship in TC America, Chandler Hull finished fourth overall in TC, and the duo of Bill Auberlen and James Walker, Jr. finished third in the overall season championship in Sprint X Pro-Am. BimmerWorld topped off the SRO season with Clay, Auberlen, and Hull taking home the win in the inaugural SRO Intercontinental GT Challenge Indianapolis 8-Hour Endurance Race. Building from the success in 2020, BimmerWorld returns with three cars and six drivers for the 2021 season.

Bill Auberlen and James Walker, Jr. return for their second season together behind the wheel of the Red Line Oil BMW M4 GT4 now wearing No. 34. Throughout their first season together, the duo managed to net three wins, two podiums, and several top-10 finishes placing them third overall in both team and driver standings. Auberlen and Walker were quick to show they could not only work well together and win races but also make their BMW blazingly fast. At the end of the year, Auberlen captured the most CrowdStrike Fastest Lap Awards for the 2020 season.

James Clay and Nick Galante will be driving the No. 36 OPTIMA Batteries / Racing To End Alzheimer’s BMW M4 GT4. Galante previously won the 2018 IMSA ST championship in a BimmerWorld F30 328i and drove the team’s M4 GT4 in the 2020 IMSA season, but this will be his first year in SRO, and 2021 will also be the first year the duo have shared a car as teammates. In addition to OPTIMA Batteries, a core BimmerWorld partner, Racing to End Alzheimer’s will continue their partnership with BimmerWorld Racing which started in 2018. Racing to End Alzheimer’s is focused on raising awareness of the disease and funding the cure. For the 2021 season, names of friends, family, and loved ones affected by this debilitating disease will be featured on the car based on donations to the cause. 

Chandler Hull returns to SRO racing action for 2021 and, like Clay, is making the jump from his TC M240iR to a full-time M4 GT4 Sprint X Silver class entry along with Jon Miller, who is a new addition to the BimmerWorld driver line up. Hull and Miller will be piloting the TAC Energy No. 94 M4 GT4 and, like the rest of the 2021 team, brings both talent and BMW racing experience. Hull had an exceptional 2020 season that netted him several podiums, 4th-place overall in the drivers’ championship for TC America, and a win in the Indy 8-Hour as part of the three-driver BimmerWorld team. He also captured several podiums and a win in another M4 GT4 Silver entry. Jon Miller has his own list of accomplishments over the past few years; last year he claimed second place in the drivers’ championship in the GT4 America Silver class division along with six podiums throughout the year and finished second in the Indy 8-Hour in a competing BMW car.

The BimmerWorld Racing team heads to Sonoma Raceway on March 5-7 for the first two races of the season.

The BimmerWorld Racing team is supported by the following sponsors:

No. 34: Red Line Synthetic Oil Corporation – Manufacturers of more than 100 high-end lubricants that have the reputation of performing better than any other product on the market, regardless of price. Using cutting-edge technology, Red Line responds to the technical challenges of today’s performance industry, utilizing knowledge gained from racing to create high-performance products for track cars and street vehicles alike.

No. 36: OPTIMA Batteries – The Ultimate Power Source. Unbeatable starting power, light weight, superior cycling capability, and extreme resistance to the most common causes of battery failure make OPTIMA Battery our choice for our own BMWs. OPTIMA also delivers the innovative OPTIMA Digital 400 and 1200 Battery Chargers for all automotive and marine batteries.

No. 36: Racing To End Alzheimer’s – Honoring loved ones who are or have been affected by Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia depends on the generosity and participation of our fans, our racing team, and our corporate sponsors. 100% of all donations go to our beneficiaries with additional corporate-matching funds. All costs and expenses are funded by sponsor Legistics.

No. 94: TAC Energy – One of the largest independent wholesale fuel distributors of refined petroleum products in the United States. With an extensive supply network across the U.S., as well as regional sales offices across the country, TAC can service almost any customer’s fuel needs.

2021 BimmerWorld M4 GT4 trio SRO livery

Core BimmerWorld technical partners include:

PFC Brakes – Leading brake friction and component manufacturer.
Lifeline Fire & Safety System – Leading manufacturer of fire safety equipment and fire safety systems to the motorsport industry.
Diffsonline – Provider of differentials to meet the demanding needs of customers, from street machines to professional race teams.
Johnstone Supply – The top cooperative wholesale distributor in the country and a recognized national leader in the HVACR industry.

Additional team sponsors include:

Go Organic – Leader in organic gummy vitamins and lozenges.
OZIUM – Clinically proven air sanitizers that eliminate, not mask, odors.
Pretzilla – The pioneer in fresh, soft pretzel bread.

2021 GT4 Sprint X schedule consists of 14 races at seven tracks:

March 5-7: Sonoma Raceway – Sonoma, CA
April 30-May 2: Circuit of the Americas  – Austin, TX 
May 21-23: Canadian Tire Motorsports Park – Ontario, Canada
June 11-13: Virginia International Raceway – Alton, VA
August 27-29: Road America – Elkhart Lake, WI
Sept 17-19: Watkins Glen International  – Watkins Glen, NY
October 15-17: Indianapolis Motor Speedway – Indianapolis, IN

FOLLOW BIMMERWORLD AT: https://www.facebook.com/bimmerworld

STAY UP TO DATE WITH BIMMERWORLD NEWS AT: http://www.bimmerworldracing.com

ABOUT: BimmerWorld is renowned as a leader in BMW aftermarket and tuning expertise, with operations spanning from stock, aftermarket, performance, and racing parts sales and development through racing from club to professional levels. BimmerWorld Racing competes primarily with the BMW Motorsport M4 GT4 in North America in both SRO and IMSA Championships, where the Virginia-based outfit has become a frequent winner and championship contender.

#34 BimmerWorld M4 GT4 – SRO

BWR_M4_34-2021-210w

Engine: 3.0L Turbo Inline-6, BMW Motorsport electronics, AiM data acquisition

Driveline: 7-gear DCT with Motorsport software, Motorsport differential with separate cooling

Suspension: Motorsport-specific control connections, 2-Way adjustable dampers, adjustable motorsport anti-roll bars front and rear

Wheels: 18-inch Motorsport race wheels

Brakes: 6-piston, fixed calipers front; 4-piston fixed calipers rear; adjustable brake bias via balance bar

Drivers: Bill Auberlen, James Walker, Jr.

Bill Auberlen

auberlen-2020-01

2020: With his illustrious history racing in BMWs, Auberlen continued his success in the SRO GT4 SprintX series, pushing the team into third overall for the season while also earning third in driver standings. He also helped the team score first place after starting from the back in the first-ever SRO Intercontinental GT Challenge Indianapolis 8-Hour Endurance Race to finish off the season.

Previously: Auberlen comes to the BimmerWorld team with a long history with the BMW brand. He has driven BMW cars in more races than any other driver in the world to become the all-time winningest American driver in a leading series. Having claimed six professional championships (four with BMW power) and competed in over 500 professional races to date, Auberlen is the most decorated and prolific BMW driver in the world. His results include over 90 race victories, 190 podium finishes, 55 pole positions, 80 fastest race laps, and 110 lap records.

James Walker, Jr.

walker-2020-01

2020: With his first season racing with BimmerWorld Racing in the SRO GT4 SprintX series, Walker made himself right at home, helping bring the team third-place overall standing in both the team and driver standings.

Previously: Walker ran the TCR series in TC America in 2019, finishing with three podiums and two fastest laps. Over the past three years, he has entered 32 professional races, finishing with three victories, thirteen podiums, two pole positions, and ten fastest race laps. His day-job expertise in vehicle dynamics will bring further expertise to the veteran BimmerWorld team.