MIL OSI Translation. Region: Germany / Deutschland –
Source: BMW Group Munich. This name is closely linked to the history of the BMW brand in international motorsport: Schnitzer. For more than half a century, Schnitzer Motorsport and BMW were together on the world’s race tracks and celebrated great successes in a wide variety of categories. This collaboration has also had a decisive influence on the BMW brand in terms of sportiness and dynamism. This long and successful journey together now ends. A look back at victories, titles and triumphs from the 1960s to the present day. The success story of the traditional racing team founded by Josef and Herbert Schnitzer Senior and headed for many decades by their half-brother Karl “Charly” Lamm began in the mid-1960s. Lamm’s twin brother Dieter Lamm, who was responsible for the technical processes and logistics of the team until his death in 2014, also played an important role. At the beginning, Schnitzer Motorsport celebrated titles in the German Circuit Championship and the European Hill Climb Championship with BMW racing vehicles. In 1975 Jacques Laffite became Formula 2 European Champion in a Formula racing car with a BMW drive.
And so it went on: Sports cars, touring cars, prototypes, GT racing – the list of triumphs that Schnitzer Motorsport and BMW have celebrated together in international racing is long and impressive. In the 1980s, Schnitzer was three times European touring car champion. At this time, the series of nine wins in touring car races began on the “Guia Circuit” in Macau (MAC). Between 1989 and 2010, Schnitzer triumphed five times in the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring and thus played a major role in the fact that BMW is still the record winner in this long-distance classic. The same applies to the 24-hour race in Spa-Francorchamps (BEL), which Schnitzer also won five times from 1985 onwards. Added to this were the titles with Roberto Ravaglia (ITA) in the World Touring Car Championship in 1987 and in the DTM in 1989 as well as with Joachim Winkelhock (GER / 1995) and Johnny Cecotto (ITA / 1998) in the German Super Touring Car Championship.
One of the great highlights of the partnership is undoubtedly the overall victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans (FRA) in 1999 with the legendary BMW V12 LMR. With this prototype, Schnitzer also won the Sebring 12-hour race (USA) in the same year. In 2001 the team secured the title in the GT classification of the American Le Mans Series (ALMS). From 2005 to 2009 Schnitzer competed as a BMW works team in the FIA World Touring Car Championship (FIA WTCC) and celebrated a sensational 25 victories and a total of 57 podium finishes.
In 2012, Schnitzer returned to the DTM as a works team with BMW – and together they celebrated a triumphant comeback year, with the driver title for Bruno Spengler (CAN), the team title for BMW Team Schnitzer and the manufacturer title for BMW. BMW Team Schnitzer was active in the DTM until 2016, with a successful record of 25 wins and 88 podium places.
In the past few years, Schnitzer continued his activities in GT racing and competed in the International GT Challenge (IGTC), among others. The victory with Augusto Farfus (BRA) in November 2018 at the GT World Cup in Macau will not be forgotten. It was Charly Lamm’s last race as team boss before he handed over the management of the team to Herbert Schnitzer Junior. A few weeks later, Lamm died unexpectedly.
In the past 2020 season, BMW Team Schnitzer returned to the podium in the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring under new leadership and clinched third place with the BMW M6 GT3. Due to the necessary realignment of the factory-based team structure, the partnership with BMW Team Schnitzer will not be continued.
“We are very proud to have played a decisive role in shaping international motorsport together with BMW for over half a century, and of the reputation that Schnitzer Motorsport has around the world,” says Herbert Schnitzer Junior. “We are also very proud of the successes and titles that we have been able to celebrate together over the decades, in touring car racing, in GT racing, in Le Mans, in Macau and on the Nürburgring-Nordschleife. We would like to thank BMW for the decades of partnership and the trust that has always been placed in us. We are very happy to look back on everything we have achieved together with BMW. I think such a long and successful collaboration as we have had with BMW is something unique in motorsport. BMW was our life and our passion. “
BMW Motorsport would like to thank the Schnitzer family and the entire team for the decades of successful cooperation.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.