Tag Archives: Reigning DTM champion Bruno Spengler

DTM

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FARFUS WINS AT Oschersleben and is Rockenfeller’s final challenger—

Oschersleben. The battle for the DTM crown is only a two-way affair. At the etropolis Motorsport Arena Oschersleben, Brazilian Augusto Farfus (BMW) wins the 400th race in history of the DTM from points’ leader Mike Rockenfeller and Jamie Green (both Audi). After errors by the opposition, this means that 30-year old Farfus is the only challenger to keep Rockenfeller from winning the 2013 title. Reigning DTM champion Bruno Spengler (BMW), Christian Vietoris and Robert Wickens (both Mercedes-Benz) all finished the race without scoring points and thus are no longer in contention for the title in the two remaining rounds of the season. In total, 70,500 spectators came to watch the race weekend in the Magdeburger Börde region.

Prior to the next round at Zandvoort on September 29th, Rockenfeller is leading with 124 points, clearly ahead of Farfus, who has 91 points. Even in case of another victory for the BMW driver at the circuit in the Dutch dunes, a second place would be enough for ’Rocky’ to become DTM champion for the first time. 

Farfus scored his second victory of the season after his success in the season opener at Hockenheim. “My great start was the key to success. I overtook Jamie Green right away and I was in front. The stops were perfect, too. I am overjoyed. We still have a mathematical chance of winning the title and that is what we will be fighting for,” the Brazilian said.

Rockenfeller was also happy with second place. “Today, Augusto was in a class of his own,” he said. “Of course, I want to win the DTM title, preferably already at Zandvoort. But when that doesn’t work out, I will be more than happy to wait until Hockenheim as well.” About the collision between his pursuers Spengler and Wickens on lap 38, after which both Canadians had to park their cars, the points’ leader said: “Everyone knows that you have to finish the race in order to score points.” 

Jamie Green having lost in the duel with Farfus after the start, he only had to let Rockenfeller past as well. Third place is the Brit’s best result since his transfer to Audi prior to the start of this season. “I had to wait for this result for a long time and I am very happy,” Green said. The team result of the brand from Ingolstadt was impressive: in total, eight Audis finished in the top ten at Oschersleben.

Gary Paffett was the best-placed Mercedes-Benz driver. The Brit started his 100th DTM race from twelfth place on the grid and moved up to finish sixth. “Actually, I am not that unhappy with the race. The opposition was strong, but not unbeatable. One could say that I lost my race in qualifying already,” the 2005 DTM champion said. For his fellow-Mercedes-Benz driver Christian Vietoris, championship hopes were reduced to a minimum after qualifying on Saturday as well. Vietoris started the race from 20th place and was classified 18th.

Dieter Gass, head of DTM, Audi: “That was the close team performance that we had hoped for: eight Audi RS 5 DTM in the points, that has never happened before. Of course, we would have liked to win this race as well, but the fact that Mike Rockenfeller made another big step in the championship is even more important. Now, he has a margin of 33 points and only one challenger. But there are still 50 points at stake. We will continue to work in a concentrated way to wrap up the title.”

Jens Marquardt, BMW Motorsport Director: “That was an absolutely great race. Augusto hasn’t made any mistakes and the pit stops were faultless, too. Today, Audi was very, very strong and still beating Rockenfeller will be more than difficult. But we will try.”

Wolfgang Schattling, head of DTM management, Mercedes-Benz:“Congratulations to BMW. Claiming victory here against such a strong Audi phalanx really deserves respect. Our performance, on the other hand, was weak, except for Gary Paffett with his sixth place. Now, we have to analyse qualifying and then be better prepared coming to Zandvoort and Hockenheim.”

DTM

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Spengler, Wittmann and Glock on top: a 1-2-3 for BMW…

Spielberg. Sheer happiness at BMW: after Bayern Munich, the car manufacturer from Munich did it likewise and scored a triple in the DTM. Reigning DTM champion Bruno Spengler became the winner of the third DTM round at Spielberg (A). Together with his fellow BMW drivers Marco Wittmann and DTM novice Timo Glock, the Canadian secured a 1-2-3 for BMW. “This is one of these weekends that you are always dreaming of. First, second and third place is sensational, brings us many points and victory for me. It couldn’t be better,” Spengler said about his 14th DTM victory. Mike Rockenfeller, who had come to Austria as the leader in the drivers’ standings, finished fourth as the best-placed Audi driver. Christian Vietoris (Mercedes-Benz) came seventh. In total, 44,000 fans came to attend the race weekend in Styria in unstable weather conditions.

Contrarily to the forecast, the race at Spielberg didn’t turn into a wet affair. In good conditions, the 22 drivers staged a highly exciting race with hard duels and entertaining overtaking manoeuvres. Spengler started from pole position and dominantly made his way to his first win of the season. Marco Wittmann and ex-Formula 1 driver Timo Glock joined the new points’ leader on the rostrum. “I haven’t completely arrived in the DTM, but today, I have made a big step – third place in the third race. Being able to spray champagne again after four or five years is a great feeling,” said Glock, who had started from twelfth place. 

Mike Rockenfeller built on his good results from the first two rounds and made the best of his five places’ starting grid penalty. In total, the Audi driver made up nine positions. “When you make it up from 13th on the grid to finish fourth in the DTM, you can be happy. Too bad that we were penalised yesterday, because today, we have seen what could have been with my Audi RS 5 DTM,” ’Rocky’ commented. Swede Mattias Ekström finished behind his fellow Audi driver Rockenfeller in fifth place. The winner of the season opener at Hockenheim, Augusto Farfus (BMW), again showed a strong performance, only lost two places after a slight collision with Ekström just before the end of the race and came home in sixth place.

A good strategy allowed Christian Vietoris to make his way up to seventh. The 24-year old Mercedes-Benz driver had started from 16th place. “All in all, the race was a very good one. I was able to make up positions and I had fun. We have to improve in qualifying on Saturday and then we will be competitive again in the next two or three races,” Vietoris explained.

In the drivers’ standings, Spengler is now leading with 53 points from Rockenfeller (41 points) and Farfus (33 points). The fourth round of the season will take place at Lausitzring on June 16th.

Jens Marquardt, BMW Motorsport Director: “Today is a very special day, a very special result. The last time for us to lock out first to third place was way back in 1992, when we even had a clean sweep of first to fifth place. Today, the guys have done a great job. Our forecast was rain. But when it stayed dry, we carefully considered: which tyre pressure and which strategy are we using? It looked easy from the outside, but it wasn’t. Today is a day to celebrate.” 

Dieter Gass, head of DTM, Audi: “According to me, our results don’t really reflect our potential today, especially when you consider how Mike Rockenfeller and Mattias Ekström made it up to the front from 13th and 15th place on the grid. After the controversial penalty, ’Rocky’ made the best out of his situation and remains well in the race for the title. After a good opening stage, Timo Scheider again had bad luck in the pits. We can only apologise to him for that.” 

Toto Wolff, head of motorsport Mercedes-Benz: “Congratulations to BMW for a great performance. Gary Paffett had bad luck, he was penalised for a move that one can discuss about. Christian Vietoris had a good strategy and was able to make up positions. We have to see whether we have done everything right and where we can improve and we will continue to work and to fight.”

DTM

21 Marco Wittmann (D), BMW Team MTEK, BMW M3 DTM

Pole for DTM champion Bruno Spengler…

Spielberg. Reigning DTM champion Bruno Spengler (BMW) celebrated his maiden pole position of the season at the Red Bull Ring in Austria. In the final qualifying heat, the Canadian completed his lap at the 4.326 kilometres long track in the hills in 1:24.836 minutes. “One can never have enough pole positions. It was a great day with a great car. But this was only 50 percent of the work. The rest has to follow tomorrow,” said Spengler, who will be starting from first place on the grid in the DTM for the 15th time in his career already. 

Spengler’s fellow BMW driver and DTM rookie Marco Wittmann sparked a surprise by claiming second place on the grid. The 23-year old German only came 0.111 seconds short of the fastest time. “This is awesome. It was only my third qualifying in DTM, and I will be in second place at the start already,” Wittmann said.

Italian Edoardo Mortara eded up third. In 2012, the Audi driver had claimed pole position at Spielberg and then went on to win. “After my success from last year, third place on the grid is again a good result for me. In the first two races, things didn’t go too well and I am happy that we now have found the speed,” the 26-year old commented. 

With his BMW M3 DTM, fourth-placed Augusto Farfus already made it into the final qualifying heat for the third consecutive time. The 2008 and 2009 DTM champion, Timo Scheider, claimed fifth place on the grid with his Audi RS 5 DTM ahead of fellow Audi driver Filipe Albuquerque. 

Robert Wickens was the best-placed Mercedes-Benz driver in qualifying. The surprising third-placed from Brands Hatch will be starting seventh with his DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé. After qualifying, the Canadian said: “Unfortunately, I risked too much on my fast lap and I made a slight mistake. But in the DTM, that is already too much to be all the way at the top. Still, I am confident for the race, because the car is very good.”

Points’ leader Mike Rockenfeller ended up eighth in qualifying, but was dropped five positions on the grid as a penalty and will start from 13th place. In free practice, the Audi driver had disrespected a yellow flag and was penalised for it.

An overview of the tyre choice of each driver for the start of the race can be found at www.dtm.com in the evening. Drivers can choose between the standard tyre or the option tyre from series’ partner Hankook, which can only be used during the race. The third season round covers 47 laps and 203.322 kilometres and will start on Sunday at 13.30 hrs. ARD is already broadcasting live from 13.15 hrs.