Legendary Schnitzer team principal Karl ‘Charly’ Lamm passed away on Thursday at the age of 63.
Lamm’s sudden passing, following a brief illness, came just weeks after his retirement from motorsports in an illustrious 40-year career that spanned multiple racing disciplines.
The German helped take the longtime BMW team to multiple touring car and sports car championships, including overall victories in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and the Nürburgring 24.
He was victorious in his final race as Schnitzer team principal in the FIA GT World Cup in Macau with Augusto Farfus (pictured above) in November, before stepping down from the role.
BMW Motorsport director Jens Marquardt paid tribute to Lamm as part of a statement from the manufacturer.
“Totally unexpectedly we received the news from the Lamm family that Charly Lamm died on Thursday,” said Marquardt.
“Our sincere condolences go to the Lamm family and the Schnitzer family. It is incredibly difficult to accept that Charly is no longer with us.
“He had a significant impact on racing at BMW for decades, celebrated major successes with his team, and wowed fans around the world with his unique passion for racing.
“Losing him so suddenly is a shock and a tragedy – particularly because Charly was just about to start a brand new chapter of his life.
“We mourn the loss of a character who was both valued and loved internationally, who will always be closely linked with BMW Motorsport.”
BMW driver Alex Zanardi offered his condolences to Lamm’s family in front of reporters at Daytona International Speedway on Friday.
“Sadly Charly Lamm, who has always been a great member of the BMW family – a person who gifted BMW with his talent and his dedication, and contributed to building so many successes for BMW Motorsport, passed away yesterday,” said Zanardi.
“The least I could do was on behalf of the BMW family, personally, to offer our best condolences.
“It’s a sad moment for the entire BMW family because whoever knew Charly, it would be very easy to understand how important he was for every one of us individually.”