Motorsport News - US
Bill Auberlen on Mid Ohio ALMS podium
6th August 2012
Bill Auberlen notched his fifth GT podium finish of the 2012 season on Saturday. The Redondo Beach, Calif., racer and his co-driver Jrg Mller (Monte Carlo) drove the No. 55 BMW Team RLL BMW M3 from the back of the field to third in the GT class in the American Le Mans Series race at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course in Lexington, Ohio.
Mller drove the first double stint of the two-hour 45-minute race, starting from the GT pole position. He dropped back to sixth after an early pitstop and lost four more positions serving a penalty for exceeding the pitlane speed limit. He regained a position before handing off to Auberlen with one hour remaining in the race. Auberlen returned to the track eighth and raced through the field to finish third.
"Another podium that's great! The team did a fantastic job of preparing the car. They gave us a very fast car for qualifying and it was superb in the race. If we hadn't had a problem earlier on, we would have been battling for the lead," Auberlen said.
"The track was challenging. Because there are so many pavement changes, we had to come up with some very inventive ways to make a balanced, fast car. The team gave us a car that was great on our Dunlop tires from beginning to end. I ran a full stint and the car was just as fast at the end as it was at the beginning. As a driver, that's all you could ask for."
After leading the GT class in practice and qualifying sessions on the 2.258-mile road course, Auberlen was disappointed to settle for the third-place finish.
"We were one of the quickest cars in every single practice session and we qualified on the pole. Because we had such a great car, it's sort of a letdown; we feel we should have won," he said. "But we'll take third today and we'll try to climb up two more steps on the podium at Road America in two weeks."
Bill Auberlen has driven BMW cars in more races than any other driver in the world. He has won six professional auto-racing championships, four with BMW power. He has competed in 464 professional races to date, 308 in BMWs. His results include 84 race victories, 179 podium finishes, 56 pole positions, 78 fastest race laps and 108 records.
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