BMW’s winning run at Spa came to a temporary halt in 1998. Eric van de Poele, Marc Duez and Alain Cudini claimed overall victory number 21 in the BMW 318i. At the time, nobody could have envisaged another 17 years passing before BMW’s 22nd success.
That came in 2015, courtesy of the local BMW Sports Trophy Team Marc VDS. One year after the Belgian team missed out on victory by just 7.7 seconds, Nick Catsburg, Lucas Luhr and Markus Palttala were victorious in the final major endurance race with the BMW Z4 GT3.
Just one year later, the BMW M6 GT3 made its debut in the Ardennes – and it was once again three BMW drivers who were left celebrating in the end. Alexander Sims, Philipp Eng and Maxime Martin took their place on the top step of the podium for ROWE Racing.
The crowning moment so far, and the 24th overall victory for BMW, came in 2018 at the 70th edition of the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps. This time, the BMW M6 GT3 carried its drivers to a one-two – and what a one-two it was! Walkenhorst Motorsport emerged triumphant from a thrilling battle with ROWE Racing to shock everyone by claiming the first major GT success in the team’s history. Philipp Eng gave it all he had in the final hours of the race and was rewarded with his second appearance in the list of winners. His team-mates: Tom Blomqvist and Christian Krognes.
The legend of Spa-Francorchamps lives on. There is still room for many more chapters in the history books of the 24-hour race. What stories will BMW write?
The race is on!