DTM

Green wins Hockenheim, Ekstrom takes title

Green wins Hockenheim, Ekstrom takes title

Jamie Green won his first DTM (Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters) race only three weeks ago in Barcelona, and today he showed that it was no fluke. The young Briton took the victory for Mercedes in the DTM season finale on the Hockenheimring,...

Jamie Green won his first DTM (Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters) race only three weeks ago in Barcelona, and today he showed that it was no fluke. The young Briton took the victory for Mercedes in the DTM season finale on the Hockenheimring, outpacing Audi's Timo Scheider by 3.696 seconds.

Jamie Green, Team HWA AMG Mercedes, AMG Mercedes C-Klasse.
Photo by xpb.cc.
"I enjoyed today's win even more than the first one in Barcelona," Green said. "It is something really special to win in front such a great crowd with so many of my Mercedes-Benz colleagues. The car was perfect and I didn't make any mistakes - this was the key for my success today."

The big winner today, though, was Mattias Ekstrom who secured the 2007 DTM championship with a third-place finish. The Audi pilot did exactly what he needed, keeping his championshp rival, Mercedes' Bruno Spengler behind him. Only 0.434 seconds separated the two at the finish, the Canadian nearly hanging onto Ekstrom's rear bumper.

"The race was very difficult from the beginning," the relieved Ekstrom explained. "I was able to drive very fast and the car was good, but after six, seven laps it started oversteering. I fought and fought -- and, still, the situation got really close in the end. That I managed to see the chequered flag in front of Bruno (Spengler) was simply nice."

Championship podium: 2007 DTM champion Mattias Ekstr?m.
Photo by xpb.cc.
With six points for the third place, and five for Spengler's fourth, Ekstrom edged his rival by a 50-47 point edge. To take the championship, Spengler would have had to not only pass Ekstrom, but also move past Scheider -- who was another three seconds up the road -- into the second position, and that was not in the cards for today.

The only other driver with a chance at the title going into today's race was Martin Tomczyk. Starting fifth -- behind Ekstrom, but ahead of Spengler, he looked to be the dark horse but he was caught in an incident between his teammate Scheider and Green on the first lap, dropping him well back and ending the race altogether for Mercedes pilot Gary Paffett.

"Unfortunately, the title fight for me only lasted up to the third turn," Tomczyk explained. "Too bad that I was again hit in an unfortunate situation. I wasn't able to do anything, I was simply sandwiched between Timo (Scheider) and Jamie (Green). Of course I'd been hoping for more. After this superb start everything would have fit perfectly if it hadn't been for that collision."

Scheider was apologetic, but pointed the finger at Green for the incident.

Martin Tomczyk, Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline, Audi A4 DTM.
Photo by xpb.cc.
"I had a good start and took the lead," he recounted. "Then a group of us were approaching the hairpin, which was very tight. I was very careful and watching Martin (Tomczyk). I ran wide, across the kerbs, to make room for him, something that Jamie Green obviously didn't do. I had to leave the grass again to return to the track and brushed him. Martin says it was less my fault than Jamie's."

Bernd Schneider took fifth for Mercedes ahead of polesitter Tom Kristensen, who showed well in his return to the Hockenheimring, where hs suffered a heavy crash at the DTM season opener.

Ekstrom claimed Audi's third DTM title, with Spengler second, and Audi's Martin Tomczyk in third with 40 points. A celebration for the Ingolstadt marque, certainly, and a welcome one at that after the team's withdrawal from the Barcelona event.

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