DTM

Nurburgring: Qualifying report

Gary Paffett's blistering time secures Nuerburgring pole Briton Gary Paffett (Mercedes-Benz) outclassed the competition during a highly-charged super pole for the sixth DTM race on the Nuerburgring to capture the first start place. The winner of...

Gary Paffett's blistering time secures Nuerburgring pole

Briton Gary Paffett (Mercedes-Benz) outclassed the competition during a highly-charged super pole for the sixth DTM race on the Nuerburgring to capture the first start place. The winner of the last championship race on the Norisring needed only 1:23.756 minutes to lap the fastest time around the 3.629 kilometre-long circuit.

Mattias Ekström (1:24.062 minutes), second in the championship standings, came second in his Audi A4 DTM. The Swede had dominated all the training and test sessions this weekend until the super pole. But he lost crucial tenths of a second in the decisive stage of his fight for pole position due to the changing grip conditions on the track.

Ekström's team mate Christian Abt celebrated his most successful qualifying so far this year with a third place. Opel's fastest driver Peter Dumbreck will start Sunday's race next to him from the second row. Overall championship leader Christijan Albers, driving an AMG-Mercedes C-class, drove the fifth-fastest time ahead of the two Opel Vectra GTS V8s driven by Marcel Fässler and Timo Scheider. Four-times DTM champion Bernd Schneider (Mercedes-Benz) placed eighth in front of Tom Kristensen (Audi).

Gary Paffett (1st start place, Mercedes-Benz):

"We didn't quite find the best set-up during yesterday's training sessions, and I was also still 3/100 of a second off the pace in qualifying. I then had a good lap in the super pole - but I only actually realised how good it was later when looking at the timings monitor. I enjoy the Nuerburgring and I'm really looking forward to the race."

Mattias Ekström (2nd start place, Audi):

"I was suddenly seven tenths slower in the super pole than in qualifying...the track had completely changed. In that sense I'm happy with the second start place and am looking forward to tough fights with the Mercedes driver in front of me. What really pleases me is that my team mate Christian is right behind me in the starting line-up and that my championship rival Christijan Albers is only in fifth place."

Christian Abt (3rd start place, Audi):

"I'm extremely happy that I've finally got it together as I've already been the second-fastest Audi driver in the last two races in qualifying, but had not been able to convert this into racing results. The third start place is fantastic."

Peter Dumbreck (4th start place, Opel):

"I did my utmost, pushed really hard and sadly braked a bit too much at the beginning of the fast lap, otherwise maybe it would have been enough for the first start row. But a lot is possible from the fourth start place, especially given that we've already created a very good set-up basis."

Hans-Jürgen Mattheis (Team Manager AMG-Mercedes):

"Today's qualifying was very exciting. The makes are so close together as never before. That's why a very special compliment is due to Gary Paffett for his fast lap. We've continued to improve over the course of the weekend. The track changed after Gary's fast lap, which disadvantaged the next drivers."

Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich (Audi Motorsport Director):

"We've always been at the top all weekend. But we weren't able to capitalise on the good performance of the Audi A4 DTM in the super pole because the grip conditions on the track had changed. I'm particularly pleased with Christian Abt's good performance and Mattias second place."

Volker Strycek (Opel Motorsport Director):

"Our speed was right from the onset this weekend. Peter Dumbreck is starting in fourth and Marcel Fässler was on his way to a sensational lap before coming to a sideways halt. A position in the first row would have been possible. I'm very optimistic for Sunday's race following this positive team result. Also for the sake of the many spectators. Already yesterday we had so many visitors as never before."

-dtm-

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About this article
Series DTM
Drivers Tom Kristensen , Marcel Fassler , Peter Dumbreck , Bernd Schneider , Christijan Albers , Timo Scheider , Christian Abt , Mattias Ekström , Volker Strycek , Gary Paffett