Rahal has run BMWs in topline U.S. sportscar racing since 2009, and whereas the hallowed model’s director of motorsport Jens Marquardt introduced in Could that the M8 could be withdrawn from the FIA World Endurance Championship come the top of the 2018/19 superseason final June, the big coupe is to proceed competing in IMSA’s GT Le Mans class in 2020.
This, says Rahal, would be the sportscar arm of his staff’s major goal within the close to future.
“Actually, I don’t know if there’s an opportunity of us working the M8 at Le Mans,” Rahal advised Motorsport.com. “It’s a subject that hasn’t actually been mentioned.
“All people is aware of my want for our staff to go to Le Mans in some unspecified time in the future in time and indirectly, form or kind. However actually the main target for us is on IMSA.
“Clearly if BMW mentioned we should be at Le Mans, we’d do every little thing we might to be there in a heartbeat, however there’s been no dialogue of it in a substantive approach.
“Proper now, we’re trying to end the IMSA season off strongly. It’s been a troublesome season for us because the win at Rolex 24 at Daytona; we’ve positively suffered beneath the Steadiness of Efficiency.
“Hopefully at Laguna Seca [this weekend] and Petit Le Mans [in October] we’ll be aggressive, and we’re already additionally getting ready for IMSA in 2020.”
Steadiness of Efficiency difficulties
Requested the place he thought the M8’s strengths lay, and the place the BoP wants correcting to make the M8 extra aggressive, Rahal replied: “I don’t suppose there’s something essentially mistaken with the BoP, or that anyone individual is guilty.
“It’s such an advanced and tough course of to determine who’s obtained what, and so I don’t know the place we’re good or dangerous in comparison with others, or when the others are displaying their palms.
“I simply discover it irritating for me personally, virtually it extra as a driver than a staff proprietor. What I like about IndyCar racing is that should you’re not quick sufficient, that’s your downside and also you’ve obtained to determine it out. Clearly with BoP, you add a complete different component to the method.
“It’s clear that Porsche have completed an excellent job this yr on all fronts [with the 911 RSR] and so they’re successful a whole lot of races – which appears opposite to the entire concept of BoP!
“I’m not likely certain IMSA itself is pleased with the entire BoP idea, however it’s what it’s and it’s what we’ve obtained, and so they’ve obtained to determine what the fitting BoP is.
“I do know IMSA is engaged on that as a result of it’s not like everybody thinks it’s OK: everybody acknowledges that it must be extra correct in order that it does actually replicate the general efficiency of the varied vehicles. The information is all there, it’s not some thriller.”
BMW’s IMSA future
Concerning BMW’s future involvement with IMSA past 2020, Rahal commented: “Our settlement goes by way of 2020 and we’re hopeful it’s going to proceed. However you hear every kind of tales concerning what’s the way forward for [IMSA] GTLM in contrast with GTD, or GTE within the WEC, and every kind of producers DPi.
“I have a look at 2020 as getting ready for the longer term and I’m undecided how the lessons will evolve, however I feel there are huge issues on the horizon.
“We have now a really robust relationship with BMW and we really feel privileged and lucky to be related to such a powerful model. However we’re additionally conscious that we’re a small piece of the pie with regards to producers making choices over their future involvement within the sport. A few of these concerns received’t instantly be obvious – they aren’t mentioned exterior boardrooms.
“However I’ll say this: motorsports is a part of the DNA of BMW, and I feel BMW will likely be concerned in main motorsports in a technique or one other for a lot of, a few years to return.”
#25 BMW Group RLL BMW M8 GTE, GTLM: Tom Blomqvist, Connor De Phillippi
Picture by: Scott R LePage / LAT Photos