DTM: Nürburgring - Race 1.
Extended the lead.
Mercedes-AMG driver Pascal Wehrlein (gooix Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM) placed third in the first race at the Nürburgring to finish on the podium and extend his lead in the DTM drivers’ standings. He is currently on 155 points, 27 points up on Edoardo Mortara (Audi) and 26 points in front of Mattias Ekström (Audi). Gary Paffett (EURONICS Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM) moved up ten places from 14th on the grid to finish fourth. Maximilian Götz (Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM) in P5 achieved his best result so far in his DTM rookie season. Austrian driver Lucas Auer (BWT Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM) started the race from pole position for the first time in his DTM career. He crossed the finish line in sixth place after an exciting race. Robert Wickens (SILBERPFEIL Energy Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM) in P8 completed a strong set of results for the Mercedes-AMG DTM Team. Five Mercedes-AMG DTM drivers in all came home in the Top Eight.
Paul Di Resta (Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM), Christian Vietoris (Original-Teile Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM) and Daniel Juncadella (PETRONAS Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM) finished twelfth, 15th and 17th respectively. The race was red-flagged after a crash at the start, following several contacts in the field immediately afterwards, and was restarted for 30 minutes behind the safety car.
Pascal Wehrlein, P3: “I’m pleased to have secured this third-place finish. However, I’m not satisfied with the way the race went. If you’re going into the first corner in P1 and you get hit from the side out of the blue, it’s not ideal. But I’ve now seen a replay of the incident. Maxime made a fair move – there was a gap and he used it. Anyway, I’ve scored vital points and also made another podium appearance. From that perspective, the result is OK.”
Gary Paffett, P4: “An exciting race again. It was good fun. 14th on the grid was a lot worse than we’d hoped for. The start of qualifying was good, but then I hit a bit of traffic on the second run and didn’t get the most out of the car. We knew that the car was fast. I managed to stay out of all trouble on the first lap and had gained five positions before the red flag came out. That was great. I worked my way forwards after the restart. My aim was to stay out of trouble again. There was a lot going on, and I managed to miss the incidents, gain position and finish in P4, which is incredible from P14 on the grid.”
All clicked into place.
Maximilian Götz, P5: “So at last it’s all clicked into place. What a great day – P6 in qualifying and P5 in the race itself. I’m very satisfied with that. At one point, I was up to fourth, but then I had to ease off slightly because my tyres were starting to degrade. That allowed Gary to go past with DRS. But I’m very happy with fifth place. A big thank-you to the team for all their super work. It’s really fantastic, and tomorrow, we’ll try for a repeat performance.”
Lucas Auer, P6: “Ultimately, I have to feel satisfied with sixth place. I started on used tyres because we were of the opinion that this was the best strategy for us with tomorrow in mind. My start was OK for the first few metres, but then I developed wheel spin which cost me two places. I wanted to get them back and braked late on the outside. But unfortunately, it didn’t work. After that, I was involved in some tough fights.”
Robert Wickens, P8: “That was a crazy race. I’m happy to finally score points again after such a long time. I think a lot more would have been possible today. I started from 13th and immediately moved up into the points. Unfortunately, I sustained a lot of damage trying to get through. I think that cost me more points in the end.”
Paul Di Resta, P12: “A pretty tough day after a lot of promise yesterday. I made a mistake in qualifying and have to hold my hands up for that. The team did a great job
to get my car ready for the race. We then finished twelfth with a very strong car. So hopefully we can return tomorrow to where we finished yesterday – at the top.”
Attack again tomorrow.
Christian Vietoris, P15: “It’s been a difficult weekend – more difficult than expected. It actually started pretty well on Friday. But today, nothing went right. I had a problem in qualifying and was losing time on the straight. Because we weren’t allowed to change anything before the race, it obviously carried on the same. Consequently, we need to iron out this problem overnight and go on the attack again tomorrow.”
Daniel Juncadella, P17: “That was a race to forget, unfortunately. I got a good start but was then spun from behind in Turn 4, which ended my race in fact. My car was too badly damaged to achieve a better result.”
Ulrich Fritz, Head of Mercedes-AMG DTM: “That was certainly one of the most spectacular races we have seen this season, with plenty of robust but mainly fair overtaking manoeuvres. Unfortunately, the start didn’t go optimally for us, but the performance by our guys during the race was first class. With five Mercedes-Benz drivers in the Top Eight, we can certainly talk in terms of a good result. What’s more, Pascal has managed to defend his lead in the drivers’ championship, while we have scored important points in the manufacturers’ championship.”