Tuesday
May222007

TEAM NEWS: BimmerWorld Takes the Fight to Acura and Mazda in Utah

Photo by John Thawley BimmerWorld drivers and crew overcome a team-wide flu to post 3rd and 10th in qualifying, 5th and 9th in the race while battling cars and dehydration

5/21/07

Dublin, VA

Leading BMW SPEED Touring Car team BimmerWorld faced two adversaries at the 2nd round of the SPEED World Challenge series at Miller Motorsports Park, in Tooele, Utah: the 22 other competitors in the field and a wicked virus that forced crew members to the hospital and both drivers to avoid food and water for three days.

Despite this, the strong spirit within the BimmerWorld team helped to keep 3rd place

qualifier Seth Thomas focused. “The crew works so close together that it was inevitable

to lose a member here and there from one of them coming down with it. Fortunately for us

they didn't all come down with it at the same time. As for James and I getting the bug

I can't even begin to explain what that was like. Right before qualifying and the race

I wasn't sure if I could go the whole distance due to fatigue, and at times, being lightheaded.

There was a job to do though and we couldn't let the crew down after watching them battle

through it themselves, so I kept my head down and did what was needed.”

For team owner James Clay, the challenges were no less frustrating. “I was able to work

through the week on setting up the car properly, but keeping focus through a full 22 turn,

3+ minute lap was a little trying. That made laying down a lap for qualifying difficult.

Luckily by the time of the race I was on an upswing and the only thing I had to deal with was

fatigue from not being able to eat or even hydrate properly for a couple of days.

In close to 100 degree heat under these conditions, I will take the result we earned this race.”

Those results obviously came from difficult physical circumstances, but also came from a lot of

testing and development with the team’s unique BMW E90 chassis, the only ones in the series.

“I’m very happy with the progress of the cars, the team, and my co-driver Seth,” said Clay.

“We continue to get stronger as we get even more testing under our belts. The Mazda’s are

super fast right now, and the Acura’s are always consistent, but we are working hard with

the current package to win. I hope people have taken note that our blue E90’s are becoming

a fixture at the front of the series and placed amongst the champion teams and drivers.”

Seth Thomas is also starting to see the long hours of work and engineering expertise of the

team pay off. “Right now the BimmerWorld E90s are on a roll; I think it is only going to get better.

With every track we visit the car gets better and better. With our developing a new car that is

nothing like its predecessors we are doing a great job and the Mazda’s and Acura’s are starting

to get scared. At this point it is only a matter of time before they are behind us and us feeling

the spray of our champagne on the podium steps.”

Like Thomas, Clay is also looking forward to the next opportunity for BimmerWorld’s success.

“I’m very optimistic coming into Lime Rock. It is a good track for us and I think if we can get

the team recovered and to full strength for the weekend, we should be able to put both cars

on the podium.”

Look for the BimmerWorld BMW’s to resume their charge to the front of the SPEED TC field in

Lime Rock, CT this weekend. No longer the small team with modest aspirations, Clay, Thomas,

and the entire BimmerWorld crew is again prepared to demonstrate their strength and BMW experti

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