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Turner’s 2019 Plans Unclear

Turner Motorsport yet to confirm 2019 program as team searches for funded drivers…

Photo: Jake Galstad/IMSA

With just one race remaining in the WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season, Turner Motorsport has focused attention on securing plans for 2019, with the seven-time championship-winning BMW squad yet to confirm a program for next year.

It comes amid a successful season for the Massachusetts-based operation, which claimed GT Daytona class honors in the Sahlen’s Six Hours of The Glen in July, while being in contention for several other podiums with a rotation of Pro-Am driver lineups in its BMW M6 GT3.

“As of today, we do not have a finalized program for next season,” said team owner Will Turner.

“The M6 GT3 with the Evo package (introduced this year) is one of the easier GT3 cars to drive and is very competitive, so it should be package that appeals to a lot of potential funded drivers, especially with the potential to be paired up with Bill Auberlen.

“Our BMW really has had potential to win every weekend so I am not expecting anything different for Petit Le Mans. We will have Markus Palttala, Dillon Machavern and Don Yount back in the car for the first time since their win at Watkins Glen.”

With three different championships on the line next year, in the launch of the WeatherTech Sprint Cup, Turner said he will look to continue his approach in pairing gentlemen drivers with professionals in either the sprint or endurance races.

The team has seen much success over the years with its gentlemen and pro pairings such as Bill Auberlen and Robby Foley and Jens Klingmann and Bret Curtis.

“We are excited for the new championship formats in 2019,” Turner said.

“The three championships will allow for more options for interested drivers, Some want to only do the long races…. Bucket list ones like the Daytona 24 and Sebring 12 so for them having the Endurance Cup is perfect.

“Then you have drivers that want to do more races but have less budget or less time so the sprint cup makes sense.

“As of right now because we have two of the M6 GT3s, we have open seats available for each of the three championships.”

“2019 is shaping up to be a very exciting year for the series and sports car racing in general, as we will be seeing a new Tire partner in Michelin as well as a new TV partner in NBC networks.

“I am anxious to get a program finalized for the season so we can begin to prepare.”

Turner has also indicated interest in the Michelin SportsCar Encore at Sebring in November, which could see participation from either its BMW M6 GT3s or BMW M4 GT4, which has been recently used in filming for the new Patrick Dempsey-produced “The Art of Racing in the Rain” movie.

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