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BMW choose their Ultimate Driver at Bedford Autodrome

Thursday, April 03 2014

BMW hosted their Ultimate Driver event earlier this week (Monday) at Bedford Autodrome. More than 7,000 people entered the competition through BMW UK's Facebook page, with the forty selected finalists being invited to Bedford to try out the new BMW 2 Series. The lucky forty were competing for a once in a lifetime opportunity to become a BMW brand ambassador, a role which will include first drives of the new BMW M3 Saloon and M4 Coupé.

Competitors were subjected to a number of driving challenges, the first of which involved tackling a technical gymkhana style course, designed to test the driver's car control as well as their knowledge of driving lines and braking points.

This was followed by a task in which contestants tested themselves against three-time World Touring Car Champion and BMW Works Driver Andy Priaulx. Drivers were asked to record a flying lap on track in a vehicle equipped with sensors, allowing their telemetry to be compared to that of Priaulx.

Further challenges included drifting and acceleration tests before the finalists ended the day's driving with another timed lap to measure their improvements over the day.

Away from the track the finalists were interviewed to test their confidence as well as find out if their personality could shine in front of the camera. These qualities as well as a passion for all things automotive and BMW were essential facets for anyone aiming to be crowned as BMW's Ultimate Driver. Experienced television presenter and petrol head Jake Humphrey was on hand to aid in the judging of the media segment of the process.

It was 41 year of father of two, Duncan Smart, who claimed the top prize after consistently displaying his natural driving aptitude and remaining near the top of the standings in every one of the day's challenges. Priaulx was particularly complimentary of Duncan's driving, scarcely believing that he had never driven on track before. Speaking after the event Duncan enthused, "Thanks to everyone I had a fantastic day, the BMW cars and team were superb and along with Andy, Jake, the instructors and my fellow competitors it made for a very special day. I'm looking forward to the amazing year ahead."

If you fancy getting behind the wheel of a BMW at Bedford Autodrome yourself click here for more information.