Challenging circuit near Magdeburg promises thrilling race.
Ingolstadt - Next weekend (May 16 to 18) the DTM is entering its next round at Oschersleben near Magdeburg. The DTM season opener at Hockenheim gave a good foretaste of what the fans can expect this year: thrilling action until the checkered flag is waved, door-to-door duels for positions and extreme competitiveness of the drivers at the front of the field.
Events in the DTM are following each other in quick succession. The first three races are held at two-week intervals, with the 3.696-kilometer track at Oschersleben marking the next stop. While aerodynamic efficiency at high speed played a crucial role on the long straights at Hockenheim the fast turns and chicanes of Oschersleben primarily call for downforce. Taking short-cuts across the curbs challenges the drivers to be careful in the process and the engineers to provide a perfectly set-up car.
The Audi squad managed both feats on many occasions in the past. Five times an Audi driver has won the round on the circuit near Magdeburg. Mattias Ekström most recently clinched victory there in 2011. In 2013, all eight Audi RS 5 DTM cars finished in the top ten and thus in the points at Oschersleben marking a premiere. So it comes as no surprise that several drivers have special memories of the circuit. Timo Scheider celebrated his first-ever DTM success there, Champion Mike Rockenfeller his first podium finish in his debut year of 2007 and newcomer Jamie Green, on clinching the pole position and a podium place last year, showed that he had finally arrived at Audi.
In 2014, Audi is traveling to Oschersleben with tailwind gained from a pole position and the two podium places by Mattias Ekström and Adrien Tambay. Four drivers in total finished in the points at the Hockenheim season opener. With six Audi RS 5 DTM cars in the top eleven Audi had previously managed a strong start of the season in qualifying.
The circuit at Oschersleben is an institution in the DTM and was on the calendar back in 2000 when the DTM made its comeback. The notorious, tight left-right combination at the end of the start-finish straight makes for thrilling action especially at the start and provides good overtaking opportunities throughout the race. The fast triple left-hand turn in the first section is particularly popular with the race drivers. Ideal for the fans is the fact that several grandstands offer a view of this section as well as the whole infield, which means that they will not miss out any of the DTM on-track action.
Dieter Gass (Head of DTM): Oschersleben forms a clear contrast to the opening event at Hockenheim because this circuit has completely different characteristics and makes different demands on the set-up of the car, so itll be another interesting assessment of where everybody stands at the beginning of the season. Well be arriving at Oschersleben with a good result packed in our bags, are looking forward to the race and are confident that well be able to continue our performances from Hockenheim.
Hans-Jürgen Abt (Team Director Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline): Were trying to take the positive mood from the season opener with us to Oschersleben. We learned a lot about our new car on the first race weekend so that we can prepare even better now. We saw how strong the competition is and that wont be any different at Oschersleben either. Still, were aiming to get on a roll and to immediately up the ante with good results.
Ernst Moser (Team Director Audi Sport Team Phoenix): Since Hockenheim, if not earlier, weve known that weve got a good base and that our two guys are in good form. Its great that the action is now continuing at two-week intervals. The track always suited Audi pretty well in the past and that obviously heightens our eagerness to race there.
Arno Zensen (Team Director Audi Sport Team Rosberg): Weve got to get past the misfortune at the season opener as quickly as possible and look ahead. We know that our car and our two drivers have got the speed now we just need to put it on track as best we can.
Facts and quotes by the Audi drivers
Mattias Ekström (35/S), Red Bull Audi RS 5 DTM #7 (Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline)
- Was on podium four times and clinched one victory at Oschersleben
- At age 35, is the oldest driver in the 2014 field
"Oschersleben has a unique atmosphere with many loyal friends and a track with a good view that is particularly attractive for the visitors. Im happy that were quickly moving on to the next race. While we scored a good result at Hockenheim, we also know all the things we can still improve on."
Jamie Green (31/GB), Hoffmann Group Audi RS 5 DTM #21 (Audi Sport Team Rosberg)
- In 2013, clinched his first pole position for Audi at Oschersleben
- Had to retire from the opening race following a collision on the first lap
"I've got fond memories of last year at Oschersleben when I clinched my first pole position and first podium result for Audi. Obviously, my dream is for the first victory to follow soon. But after a difficult opener at Hockenheim even a place in the top six would be a good result for us."
Miguel Molina (25/E), Audi Sport Audi RS 5 DTM #8 (Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline)
- Recovered ten positions in the season opener at Hockenheim
- Started from the pole position at Oschersleben in 2011
"With our performance in qualifying as well as in the race we gained a lot of self-confidence at Hockenheim even though we havent achieved a result in the points yet. We want to rectify this at Oschersleben."
Edoardo Mortara (27/I), Audi Sport Audi RS 5 DTM #15 (Audi Sport Team Abt)
- Was on podium at Oschersleben in his debut year of 2011
- Drove the fastest race lap of all Audi drivers at Hockenheim
"Oschersleben will be seeing a thrilling race. Audi achieved several good results there in the past. The Hockenheim opener makes us feel optimistic although there are still a lot of things were able and going to improve."
Nico Müller (22/CH), Audi Financial Services Audi RS 5 DTM #22 (Audi Sport Team Rosberg)
- Has never contested a car race at Oschersleben before
- Set the third-fastest race lap in the season opener at Hockenheim
"Oschersleben is a completely new track for me because Ive never raced there before. Although Ive experienced my first DTM weekend now therell again be many new experiences. Ive already learned quite a bit, so Im confident that things will be going even better at Oschersleben."
Mike Rockenfeller (30/D), Schaeffler Audi RS 5 DTM #1 (Audi Sport Team Phoenix)
- Took his first podium in his DTM career at Oschersleben
- With fourth place at Hockenheim achieved the best start of the season in his DTM career
"Oschersleben is a track I really like and thats a lot of fun to race on. So its great that its the second race on the calendar this year. Id like to repeat everything we did well at Hockenheim and simply skip the things that werent good. Then well have every chance of being in contention again."
Timo Scheider (35/D), AUTO TEST Audi RS 5 DTM #2 (Audi Sport Team Phoenix)
- Celebrated his first DTM race victory at Oschersleben in 2008
- Has contested 14 DTM races at Oschersleben more than any other driver
"At Oschersleben, I scored my first DTM victory and became Champion for the first time in the same year. So Ive got many fond memories of the track. I also held the lap record for a long time and think that with this powerful car the time has come to recapture it."
Adrien Tambay (23/F), Playboy Audi RS 5 DTM #16 (Audi Sport Team Abt)
- Clinched the first pole position in his DTM career at Hockenheim
- Finished in the top ten at Oschersleben in 2013
"In the DTM, you cant be happy about a successful weekend for very long. The pole position and the podium at Hockenheim have long been ticked off because the game starts all over again at Oschersleben. So were just taking the great emotions from the opener with us and are going to attack again at Oschersleben."