Marco Wittmann scores fourth season win at the Nürburgring

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At the Nürburgring, Marco Wittmann scored his fourth victory of the season.

Marco Wittmann has his maiden DTM title within reach. Thanks to a faultless performance in the seventh round of the season at the Nürburgring, the German BMW M4 DTM driver extended his lead in the drivers’ standings even further. Mattias Ekström, the 24-year-old’s fiercest rival, retired from the race following a collision in the opening stages. “This is a great success for us. Slowly, we can really start talking about the title. Towards the end of the race, it still was a little close, because Mike Rockenfeller was able to close up. I think that his tyres were better than mine in the closing stages of the race. Now, we have to continue like this,” Wittmann enthused after his lights-to-flag victory. In total, 80,000 fans visited the DTM event in the Eifel.

With his Audi RS 5 DTM, Mike Rockenfeller took the chequered flag in second place, 1.2 seconds down. At the start, the 30-year-old pipped his fellow Audi driver Edoardo Mortara and didn’t give up his position throughout the 49 lap race. “In the last few laps, I was able to close up to Marco Wittmann a little but further, but unfortunately, it wasn’t enough to mount an attack. I tried all the time to close up with fast lap times, but he simply was faster. However, second place is also a great result for the Phoenix team in its home race,” the Audi driver commented. Mortara completed the podium in third place.

Classified fourth, Paul Di Resta only just missed out on a podium finish. The Brit, who started from eighth on the grid, gradually worked his way up through the ranks. “My verdict is very positive. We were able to challenge for a podium finish by our own means. My thanks go out to the entire crew for having done a perfect job. I am very confident for the races to come,” the 28-year-old said. Four other drivers of a DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé completed the strong showing by Mercedes-Benz at the Nürburgring.

Mattias Ekström will be facing a tough job when he still wants to challenge Marco Wittmann in the battle for the title. The Swede, second in the drivers’ standings, is 64 points down with three races to go. For the Audi driver, all his hopes of a good result were blown in the opening stages of the race. “In the third corner, I tangled with an opponent. Because of that, something broke on the right of my car and I had to retire,” the 36-year-old explained. Tied on points with the two-times’ champion, Edoardo Mortara also still has a chance to win the title.

Jens Marquardt, BMW Motorsport Director: “That was a very emotional weekend for us. Losing Dieter Lamm last week was really moving. Marco Wittmann’s victory is a boost for the entire team. Like this, we are making a big step towards the title, but I kindly ask all those who want to congratulate us to wait, because today, we have seen how quickly a race can be over.”

Dieter Gass, head of DTM, Audi: “Basically, having two drivers on the podium is a good result in the DTM. Congratulations to Mike Rockenfeller and Edoardo Mortara. Of course, the fact that only the two of them managed to use their good starting grid positions, isn’t satisfying. Today, we have seen some situations that we need to look at once again in quiet. Losing four out of eight cars because of collisions hurts.”

Wolfgang Schattling, head of DTM management, Mercedes-Benz: “We can live very well with the race result and fourth place for Paul Di Resta, because the Nürburgring doesn’t particularly suit us. I am very happy for the entire team that we managed to get five cars into the top ten.”

The race at a glance

13.30 The field gets underway for the formation lap.
Start Wittmann takes the lead from Rockenfeller, Mortara. Green drops back, Molina has problems as well.
Lap 1 Molina has dropped back to the end of the field. The use of rain tyres is admitted, which means there is no pit stop window. Molina comes into the pits at the end of the lap, continues after wheel change.
Lap 2 Wittmann is leading from Rockenfeller, Mortara, Green, Juncadella, Di Resta, Farfus, Scheider. Glock and Paffett tanlge in the battle for 20th. Ekström into the pits.
Lap 3 Ekström into the pits again, he retires.
Lap 4 Use of DRS now enabled. Molina comes into the pits again as well, he retires, too.
Lap 6 Glock and Paffett have to swap positions because of an inappropriate overtaking move. Petrov spins.
Lap 7 Wittmann is leading with a margin of 1.6 seconds from Rockenfeller, then Mortara, Juncadella, Di Resta, Green, Farfus, Martin, Vietoris and Müller.
Lap 8 Müller and Scheider battle for tenth. Scheider is tapped by Wickens under braking for the first corner and in turn tangles with Müller. Scheider comes into the pits and retires.
Lap 10 Wickens under investigation because of the incident with Scheider. Farfus and Martin overtake Green for sixth and seventh.
Lap 11 Martin overtakes Farfus for sixth in the Mercedes Arena. No further action following the incident between Wickens and Scheider. Müller goes straight and retires.
Lap 12 Green misses his braking point for the first corner and pushes Farfus all the way through the Mercedes Arena. Farfus spins in the run-off area. The incident between the two is under investigation.
Lap 13 Di Resta overtakes Juncadella in the battle for fourth. The incident between Green and Farfus will be reported to the stewards after the race.
Lap 14 Petrov overtakes Tomczyk and is now ninth.
Lap 18 Battle between Mortara and Di Resta for third place in the Mercedes Arena, Mortara initially defends his position. Juncadella closes up, too.
Lap 19 Farfus is the first driver to come in for a mandatory pit stop.
Lap 21 Juncadella, Martin, Green into the pits.
Lap 22 Race leader Wittmann comes into the pits, so do Vietoris and Petrov.
Lap 23 Rockenfeller, Mortara, Di Resta into the pits.
Lap 24 Green overtakes Tomczyk for eighth.
Lap 25 Wehrlein, Tambay, Hand, Félix da Costa into the pits.
Lap 26 Tomczyk, Wickens, Glock into the pits. Hand is under investigation because of a possible unsafe release.
Lap 27 Spengler, Paffett into the pits.
Lap 28 Tomczyk overtakes Farfus and is now tenth.
Lap 30 Tomczyk overtakes Petrov and is ninth.
Lap 31 Hand will be reported to the stewards. Félix da Costa also under investigation, will also be reported to the stewards.
Lap 32 All the drivers having completed their pit stops, Wittmann is leading from Rockenfeller, Mortara, Di Resta, Juncadella, Martin, Vietoris, Green, Tomczyk, Petrov, Wehrlein, Wickens, Farfus, Félix da Costa, Tambay, Spengler, Hand, Glock and Paffett. Tambay overtakes Félix da Costa for 14th.
Lap 33 Wittmann misses his braking point before the final chicane and goes straight, but continues.
Lap 36 Farfus comes into the pits, retires.
Lap 39 Paffett overtakes Glock for 16th.
Lap 42 Slight drizzle.
Lap 45 Green and Tomczyk are involved in a tight battle for eighth place. Eventually, Tomczyk gets past.
Lap 46 Wehrlein overtakes Green for ninth; later on, Wickens does it likewise. Green drops back to eleventh.
Lap 48 Rockenfeller is closing up to Wittmann and is now within the DRS window of two seconds.
Lap 49 Final lap. Wittmann wins from Rockenfeller, Mortara, Di Resta, Juncadella, Vietoris, Martin, Tomczyk, Wickens, Wehrlein.

 DTM

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About this article
Series DTM
Event Nürburgring
Sub-event Sunday post-race
Track Nürburgring
Drivers Paul di Resta, Mike Rockenfeller, Christian Vietoris, Edoardo Mortara, Marco Wittmann, Daniel Juncadella
Article type Race report
Tags audi, bmw, mercedes

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