BMW exits WEC to free up Farfus, Catsburg for WTCR finale

Augusto Farfus and Nicky Catsburg will both be free to compete in the final round of the World Touring Car Cup after BMW Motorsport confirmed an end to its programme in the World Endurance Championship.

The pair inked deals to return to the highest level of touring car racing this season as team-mates with the BRC Racing team – with the WTCR entry in a pair of Hyundai i30 N TCRs running alongside their ongoing commitments with BMW’s sportscar programme.

That looked set to cause an issue later in the year, with the WTCR season finale in Malaysia scheduled to take place on the same weekend as the 8 Hours of Bahrain; the fourth event of the 2019-20 WEC campaign.

However, BMW has confirmed that it will exit the WEC at the end of the current season, which concludes with the Le Mans 24 Hours next month.

That decision means that the potential clash of dates for the BRC Racing pair has now been removed, which should allow both to compete in the WTCR finale.

“We will not compete in WEC going forward,” BMW Motorsport director Jens Marquardt said. “Therefore, the 24 Hours of Le Mans in June will be another highlight for us in drawing to a close – just like in 2018, when we celebrated the successful world premiere of the BMW 8 Series Coupe there.

“But in light of us sharpening our focus as part of our strategy for the future, continuing our WEC involvement in the coming years does not fit with our direction.”

The DTM will continue to play a part in BMW’s motorsport activities alongside Formula E and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.