Oschersleben (DE) - Augusto Farfus (BR) is back on the top step of the podium: the BMW Team RBM driver produced a flawless race in Oschersleben (DE) to win the eighth race of the DTM season, coming home 6.298 seconds ahead of Mike Rockenfeller (DE, Audi).
The 30-year-old laid the foundations for his victory at the start, when he got away cleanly from second on the grid to pass Jamie Green (GB, Audi) and take the lead by the time he reached the first corner. It was the 57th win for BMW Motorsport in the DTM and the 49th for the BMW M3. Farfus celebrated his third victory in the popular touring car series, and his second of the season.
BMW was able to retain its lead in the Manufacturers’ Championship with 276 points, ahead of Audi (267) and Mercedes-Benz (237).
It was an eventful race for the remaining BMW drivers, and particularly reigning champion Bruno Spengler (CA). The BMW Team Schnitzer driver made an outstanding start from sixth on the grid, immediately making up three places. Over the course of the race, however, he was unable to match the pace of the leaders in his BMW Bank M3 DTM and was forced to retire 11 laps from the end following a collision with Robert Wickens (CA, Mercedes).
Martin Tomczyk (DE) made a jump start from eighth on the grid, resulting in a drive-through penalty that saw the BMW Team RMG driver drop well back down the field. Tomczyk, at the wheel of the BMW M Performance Parts M3 DTM, eventually retired from the race shortly before the end with technical problems.
Marco Wittmann (DE, Ice-Watch BMW M3 DTM), Dirk Werner (DE, SAMSUNG BMW M3 DTM), Timo Glock (DE, DEUTSCHE POST BMW M3 DTM), Joey Hand (US, BMW M3 DTM) and Andy Priaulx (GB, Crowne Plaza Hotels BMW M3 DTM) also missed out on the points, coming home 12th, 13th, 15th, 16th and 19th respectively. Hand did set the fastest lap of the race, clocking a time of 1:21.255 minutes on lap 14.
Jens Marquardt (BMW Motorsport Director): “That was a fantastic performance from Augusto Farfus and BMW Team RBM in an incredibly intense race. It is a great feeling to have one of our drivers back on the top step of the podium. This is Augusto’s third podium in a row and his second win of the year.
That is very impressive. Behind him, the race was extremely turbulent at times. Given our starting positions, we should obviously have had one or two more cars in the points. We will now analyse that in greater detail. For now, however, we are celebrating our third win of the season, Augusto and BMW Team RBM.”
Bart Mampaey (Team Principal, BMW Team RBM): “That was a fantastic performance from Augusto Farfus. Even his qualifying was awesome: that was the sixth time in a row he had made it into the top-four qualifying, which is very impressive. The key to the race was his perfect start, after which he was able to open up a lead and control the pace.
From a strategic point of view, it was not easy keeping Mike Rockenfeller at bay. In the end, our pace was good enough on both compounds to stay in front right through to the finish. A great result! Joey Hand found a very strong pace during certain phases, as shown by his fastest race lap. However, the starting position plays a very large role in the DTM, and his was not good enough this time. We will work on that. Despite this, on the whole we are obviously very happy.“
Charly Lamm (Team Principal, BMW Team Schnitzer): “We are obviously bitterly disappointed. Yesterday we were the fastest in qualifying, and now we leave without any points and with only one of our cars having finished. We will have to bounce back from this. Bruno Spengler’s retirement is particularly crucial, as we were looking for a lot of points from him here.
Dirk Werner lost valuable time in his middle stint, when he was also trying to watch Bruno’s back a bit. Generally speaking, however, we struggled today. It just was not our day. I would like to congratulate Augusto Farfus and BMW Team RBM. They showed what was possible today.”
Ernest Knoors (Team Principal, BMW Team MTEK): “Congratulations to Augusto Farfus and his team. The race was actually ok from our point of view, but yesterday’s qualifying obviously meant we were starting from very difficult positions. We opted for a risky strategy for Timo Glock.
If the race had gone our way, then it could definitely have paid off. Timo did a very long stint on the option tyres and did very well to maintain performance. Marco Wittmann was a little unlucky in the first corner, but drove a solid race after that. We simply have to put ourselves in better positions on the Saturday.“
Stefan Reinhold (Team Principal, BMW Team RMG): “That was an extremely disappointing weekend for us here in Oschersleben. Despite this, I would like to thank my team for working so hard. We will continue to push ahead of the next race, in order to come away with a better result again. Congratulations to BMW Team RBM and Augusto Farfus. They produced a great race.”
Augusto Farfus (car number 7, BMW Team RBM, 1st / Tyres: Option-Standard-Standard): “I am obviously very happy. Every victory is special and you have to fight very hard for them, but this track is also very special as I have great memories from racing here in the past. I had a good start from second and the pace of the car was very good from the beginning.
I was able to pull away with the option tyre, then with the prime I could keep up with Mike Rockenfeller. The car was very stable for the entire race. I wanted to do the best job I could and thankfully that was good enough for first. Also a big thank you to BMW Team RBM for the great job everyone did today.”
Marco Wittmann (car number 21, BMW Team MTEK, 12th / Tyres: Option-Standard-Standard): “It was definitely a tough race. I think we lost everything yesterday in the qualifying, as I had a bad starting position. The start was okay, but not the best. I was more or less in a sandwich for the first corner.
I had to brake and lost quite a lot of positions. I tried to fight back and in the end I finished 12th. I think that was the maximum I could have hoped for today. It was great to see Augusto win, so congratulations to him. Now we need to look forward to Zandvoort where I want a good qualifying so I can achieve a good result.”
Dirk Werner (car number 2, BMW Team Schnitzer, 13th / Tyres: Standard-Option-Standard): “The result is quite disappointing. I lost two places at the start and then got stuck in traffic after my first pit stop. After that my tyres degraded badly, so I was hardly able to defend myself. Congratulations to Augusto on his second win of the season. In contrast, I must forget that race and concentrate on the next challenges.”
Timo Glock (car number 22, BMW Team MTEK, 15th / Tyres: Standard-Standard-Option): “We tried something different. We pitted very early and I think I have done the longest stint ever for me on options. I had a very good start, a good first lap and then I just tried to keep the option tyres alive from lap six on. I am just happy we brought the car home. Unfortunately it didn't work out, but from that position we had to try something.”
Joey Hand (car number 8, BMW Team RBM, 16th / Tyres: Standard-Option-Standard): “I was in a thankless position, as I had to start from towards he back of the field. Because of this, I just tried to get through the first corners undamaged. However, I was hit several times and my car was damaged, making it virtually impossible to drive. Despite this, I tried to push on and maybe get into the points. However, there really was not much I could do from that point on.”
Andy Priaulx (car number 16, BMW Team RMG, 19th / Tyres: Option-Standard-Standard): “I had a damaged car at the front for almost the whole race. I was then put on the grass, resulting in the car sliding sideways and being damaged. Despite this, I carried on and tried my best. The incident with Daniel Juncadella, in which he spun me after my pit stop, was just one of those racing incidents.”
Martin Tomczyk (car number 15, BMW Team RMG, 20th / Tyres: Standard-Standard -Option): “First of all I have to apologise to my team. We did a reasonably okay job yesterday in qualifying and the starting position was quite good. I was quite optimistic going into the race, but unfortunately I had a jump start. It was my mistake so I’m sorry for that. Otherwise I just did my race and it was nothing special. At the end I retired due to a technical problem, and we will now have to investigate what it was. Unfortunately I would have had to retire regardless of where I was lying in the race.”
Bruno Spengler (car number 1, BMW Team Schnitzer, DNF / Tyres: Option-Standard-Standard): “We had problems with the balance of the car in today’s race. I was not quick enough and tried to defend. The collision with Robert Wickens was unfortunate. I was on the inside, he was on the outside. He tried to pull in and unfortunately we collided. I had obviously hoped for a very different result. However, I will still try to do my best and win the last two races. Congratulations to Augusto Farfus on his success.”