The young guns are firmly in control of the DTM: while 19-year-old Pascal Wehrlein (Mercedes-Benz) celebrated his maiden race win at the Lausitzring, BMW driver Marco Wittmann crowned himself with an early title win in the most popular international touring car series.
“This is sensational, simply unbelievable. It was a difficult race, I had to keep myself out of all the battles. In the end, that was the key to winning the title. I first have to deal with all the emotions,” a visibly moved Wittmann commented.
For the 24-year-old, sixth place in the race with his BMW M4 DTM was enough for an early decision in the battle for the title after eight of ten season rounds.
At the start of the race, Wehrlein converted his first-ever DTM pole position into the race lead. The 19-year-old German went on to continuously extend his lead. The youngster had a heart-stopping moment on lap 16 when he slid off the track while in the lead.
However, Wehrlein remained unfazed and drove victory home.
|Pascal Wehrlein (Photo: DTM.com)|
“A great success for me and for the team. Today, our strategy was exactly spot-on. Thanks to the entire team that enabled me to score this win,” the Mercedes-Benz driver enthused.
Mattias Ekström, who could have prevented Wittmann from his early title win, had a race to forget. After a poor start, the Swede slid into the gravel trap on lap three and dropped back well down the order.
|Marco WIttmann, BMW M4 DTM (Photo: DTM.com)|
On lap 27, the two times’ champion had to park his Audi RS 5 DTM altogether after a wheel had come off the car.
“One shouldn’t blame my crew. Normally, they are doing a perfect job,” the 36-year-old said.
|Marco Wittmann (Photo: DTM.com)|
Race results* – Lausitzring (round 8 of 10)
1 - Pascal Wehrlein (Mercedes C-Coupe) - HWA - 52 laps 1.15'47"314
2 - Christian Vietoris (Mercedes C-Coupe) - HWA - 15"418
3 - Timo Scheider (Audi RS5) - Phoenix - 15"681
4 - Daniel Juncadella (Mercedes C-Coupe) - HWA - 18"024
5 - Robert Wickens (Mercedes C-Coupe) - HWA - 32"677
6 - Marco Wittmann (BMW M4) - RMG - 48"435
7 - Augusto Farfus (BMW M4) - RBM - 1'02"380
8 - Martin Tomczyk (BMW M4) - Schnitzer - 1'07"705
9 - Miguel Molina (Audi RS5) - Abt - 1'08"719
10 - Mike Rockenfeller (Audi RS5) - Phoenix - 1'13"480
11 - Joey Hand (BMW M4) - RBM - 1'14"734
12 - Vitaly Petrov (Mercedes C-Coupe) - Mucke - 1'19"199
13 - Gary Paffett (Mercedes C-Coupe) - HWA - 1 lap
14 - Maxime Martin (BMW M4) - RMG - 1 lap
15 - Bruno Spengler (BMW M4) - Schnitzer - 2 laps
16 - Edoardo Mortara (Audi RS5) - Abt - 2 laps
Fastest lap of the race: 1'19"782 by Timo Scheider
|Lausitzring (Photo: DTM.com)|
Paul di Resta
Antonio Felix Da Costa
1.Wittmann 128; 2.Vietoris 59; 3.Ekstrom, Mortara 56; 5.Rockenfeller 54; 6.Spengler 42; 7.Wehrlein 40; 8.Martin, Farfus 39; 10.Wickens 37.