Bruno Spengler third after impressive comeback.
Budapest (HU), 1st June 2014. Marco Wittmann (DE) celebrated his second win of the year at the third race of the DTM season in Budapest (HU). The BMW Team RMG driver took full advantage of his pole position in the Ice-Watch BMW M4 DTM to comfortably lead the race from start to finish. After 41 laps of the Hungaroring, Wittmann came home 6.615 seconds ahead of Miguel Molina (ES, Audi). The 24-year-old has regained the lead in the Drivers’ Championship with 50 points ahead of his home race at the Norisring (DE) at the end of June. The victory was BMW Motorsport’s 61st in the history of the DTM, and the second with the new BMW M4 DTM. This was also the second win in the DTM for BMW Team RMG and its boss Stefan Reinhold (DE).
Bruno Spengler (CA) produced a successful fightback in the BMW Bank M4 DTM to cross the finish line in third place and claim his first podium of the season. Spengler had started the race from ninth on the grid and on standard tyres, and could initially do nothing to stop all the cars on the faster option tyres from passing him. However, when the 2012 DTM champion had changed onto the softer compound, he promptly set about charging through the field on his way to third place and a richly-deserved spot on the podium.
Augusto Farfus (BR) struggled with technical problems on this Castrol EDGE BMW M4 DTM from the word go, and retired from the race with ten laps remaining. Martin Tomczyk (DE, BMW M Performance Parts M4 DTM) and Joey Hand (US, Crowne Plaza Hotels BMW M4 DTM) finished 13th and 15th.
Jens Marquardt (BMW Motorsport Director): “That was a very intense race against a great backdrop, in which Marco Wittmann once again put on an absolutely outstanding display. He dominated the race right from the start and stayed clear of trouble at all times. Marco is incredibly strong this season and it is a joy to watch him from the pit wall. His second win of the season in only the third race, and the lead in the Drivers’ Championship – long may this continue. Behind him it was very exciting right to the end, particularly in the battle for third place, due to the different tyre strategies. In the end the strategy employed by Bruno Spengler, who produced some great overtaking manoeuvres at the end of the race, and Maxime Martin paid off. Unfortunately the same cannot be said of António Félix da Costa and Timo Glock. Despite this, congratulations to both our rookies on their first points in the DTM. Four cars in the top ten meant we scored some important points in the Manufacturers’ Championship. It was a great weekend, and we felt right at home here in Hungary.”
Stefan Reinhold (Team Principal, BMW Team RMG): “Two wins in three races: that is hard to believe, but feels fantastic. After Oschersleben, our goal for Budapest was to do another top-class job – and we did just that. Both drivers performed superbly and the guys in the garage did a great job. Marco Wittmann was fantastic again today. His level of performance is very impressive. I am also delighted for Maxime Martin, who finished sixth to score his first points. Today’s result is obviously also excellent for BMW, and we are just very happy. Thank you to BMW for the fantastic cooperation.”
Charly Lamm (Team Principal, BMW Team Schnitzer): “Firstly, congratulations to Marco Wittmann and BMW Team RMG on their win. But we also have reason to be happy today – with Bruno Spengler, at least. Bruno had a very good race. The strategy was right and, after a good start, he was the fastest man in the field on prime tyres. In the second part of the race, Bruno was simply sensational on the option tyres. Our first podium of the year feels great. Unfortunately we did not manage to provide Martin Tomczyk with a car with which he could challenge the front of the field. That is a shame, as I am certain he too could have had a good result.”
Ernest Knoors (Team Principal, BMW Team MTEK): “It is obviously good news that António Félix da Costa scored his first points in the DTM. However, it was obviously not the result we had hoped for. Both drivers did their very best and fought hard during the race. In my opinion there were a few questionable situations. When it comes down to it, however, we must try to convert our pace into even better results in the race. Congratulations to BMW Team RMG and Marco Wittmann.”
Bart Mampaey (Team Principal, BMW Team RBM): “Our race was actually over before it really got going. Both cars had heavy contact after the start. Augusto Farfus’ car developed a technical problem very early on. We will have to take a very close look to determine whether or not it was connected with the contact at the start. Joey Hand dropped back at the start and then had a fairly uneventful race. He made progress on the option tyres, but dropped back again on the primes. All in all, it has been a disappointing weekend for us. However, it has definitely been worth returning to Budapest for BMW in general. Congratulations to Marco Wittmann.”
Marco Wittmann (car number 23, BMW Team RMG, 1st): “I am proud to have followed pole position with a win on the return of the DTM to the Hungaroring. The key was winning the start. After that I was able to open up a lead and pull clear of the DRS window. The pit stop was also flawless. The guys at BMW Team RMG did a fantastic job. After that, I just had to remain focussed and avoid making any mistakes. On the primes I was able to maintain my lead over the second-placed car – and then to cross the finish line as the winner. That is a fantastic feeling.”
Bruno Spengler (car number 9, BMW Team Schnitzer, 3rd): “It is an awesome feeling to finally be back on the podium. It was great fun ploughing through the field on the option tyres today. The tyres were consistently good, meaning I was able to push hard even at the end of the race, and was able to make up positions on a circuit on which it is difficult to overtake. I gained a lot of places at the start. After the misfortune we suffered in Oschersleben, everything worked perfectly this time. I am particularly pleased for BMW Team Schnitzer. We have been rewarded for our hard work. The guys did a great job.”
Maxime Martin (car number 24, BMW Team RMG, 6th): “It is not too easy to start with the primes, as they were all passing and you lose quite a lot of time. At the end we were coming back, but were still quite far from the front. These are my first points. I am happy, my job is done for the weekend.”
António Félix da Costa (car number 18, BMW Team MTEK, 8th): “My car was really, really hard to drive in the first stint on the option tyres and I was just trying to lose as little time as I could. Then after the pit stop my car was actually quite good on prime tyres, but we were in a fight with Mortara. He was given a penalty and cost us time. Then, in the last corner of the final lap, Jamie Greeen just pushed me completely off the track. Despite this, I am happy with the points.”
Martin Tomczyk (car number 10, BMW Team Schnitzer, 13th): “It was a difficult day. My car just did not have the performance. I was far too slow on both the option and prime tyres, and had no chance. You cannot fight with blunt weapons in such a fiercely-competitive series as the DTM.”
Joey Hand (car number 4, BMW Team RBM, 15th): “It stemmed from a bad start, when I had massive wheelspin. I am not sure why, we shall have to look at it, but the start boxes were pretty dirty from the previous races. The car took a good deal of damage at the start from a hit on the right front. We had some suspension damage, and we definitely had some aero bits knocked off. The pace we had on options was very surprising, with the damage affecting the prime tyre more than the options.”
Timo Glock (car number 17, BMW Team MTEK, 19th): “It was a disappointing race for me and the team. Unfortunately, after the pit stop, we lost our race behind Edoardo Mortara, who hit me twice and overtook me once by pushing me off the track. He had to give that position back to me. Then he immediately tried it again. I got my braking slightly wrong in turn two, he came down the inside, drove into the side of my car and forced me off the track. I ended up sat behind him, but could not get past. When everyone on the option tyres caught us up, all the Audis passed us with quite a lot of contact. I fought back, but it all went wrong on the final lap. I am pleased for Marco Wittmann, who claimed his second win. Bruno Spengler also fought back strongly to finish on the podium, so all in all it was a good result for BMW.”
Augusto Farfus (car number 3, BMW Team RBM, 21st): “From the start of the race we had technical problems, and that was that. We tried everything to see if it would work, but it just wasn't possible and nothing happened for us. It was a shame. It is frustrating when you get zero points.”