Wehrlein: “I’m not too dissatisfied with my performance and I think that I made the best of the situation.”
The DTM returns to the Hungaroring near Budapest this weekend after a 26-year break. Mercedes-Benz DTM driver Pascal Wehrlein (gooix Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) finished qualifying for the third round of the DTM in 16th place with a lap time of 1:37.846 minutes. Canadian Robert Wickens (FREE MAN'S WORLD Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 1:37.857 minutes) placed 17th.
Fellow Mercedes-Benz drivers Paul Di Resta (DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 1:38.133 minutes), Daniel Juncadella (Petronas Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 1:38.216 minutes), Gary Paffett (EURONICS Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 1:38.384 minutes) Vitaly Petrov (DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 1:38.960 minutes) and Christian Vietoris (Original-Teile Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 1:39.022 minutes) booked grid positions 19 to 23 respectively.
Looking ahead to the race: The third DTM race of the 2014 season commences at 1:30 pm (live on ARD TV, from 1:15 onwards) and will be staged over 41 laps, equating to a total distance of some 179.621 kilometres. BMW driver Marco Wittmann (1:36.518 minutes) will start from pole position.
Pascal Wehrlein (19, Germany, gooix Mercedes AMG C-Coupé - 16th, (1:37.846): “Given the circumstances, that was the maximum we were going to get today. Although the gap to the front-runners is still quite big, I’m not too dissatisfied with my performance and I think that I made the best of the situation. Especially as I’ve been suffering from a cold for the past few days.”
Robert Wickens (25, Canada, FREE MAN’S WORLD Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) - 17th, (1:37.857): “That was one of my better qualifying sessions this year, as I went through into Q2 for the first time. Frankly, we ought to have done that in every qualifying this season, but unfortunately, something has always gone wrong, like the technical problem at Hockenheim in between free practice and qualifying. I finally had a trouble-free session here in Budapest, but we know that we still have plenty to do. My lap in Q1 was good, in Q2 though, we didn’t perhaps go about things the right way, but all in all, we have to deal with our situation in a realistic manner and can be satisfied with our work so far this weekend.”
Paul Di Resta (28, Scotland, DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) - 19th, (1:38.133): “Obviously, we can’t feel too happy about our qualifying result, but for the first time this season, we have noticed several improvements today. First and foremost, the car was handling better, so I can at least see a light at the end of the tunnel. We’re going to carry on working hard. My thanks once again to the guys who are leaving no stone unturned to improve the car. As Mercedes, we want to get back into winning ways as soon as possible.”
Daniel Juncadella (23, Spain, Petronas Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) - 20th, (1:38.216): “That was yet another tough qualifying for me. I didn’t manage to post a single clean lap. It’s important that we don’t allow our heads to drop and that we keep working hard. I’m sorry about messing up Vitaly’s lap. I obstructed him on the final corner because I didn’t know he was approaching, and I moved over too late.”
Gary Paffett (33, England, EURONICS Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) - 21st, (1:38.384): “Qualifying was a big disappointment. We’re still having problems matching the opposition for speed. Consequently, we have to get every lap absolutely perfect to set a half-decent time. I didn’t manage to do that today, and that’s why I’m disappointed with myself. I made one error on my fast lap that cost me a lot of time. We’ve got a big job ahead of us tomorrow. The positive aspect is that I feel we’ve made a small step forward in understanding the car.”
Vitaly Petrov (29, Russia, DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) - 22nd, (1:38.960): “We improved the car a lot in between free practice and qualifying. The car felt good. At any rate, we’ve moved forwards. Sadly though, that isn’t yet apparent in the results, but all being well, it will enable us to progress in the future. Unfortunately, I hit quite a lot of traffic in qualifying and didn’t complete my fast lap.”
Christian Vietoris (25, Germany, Original-Teile Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) - 23rd, (1:39.022): “That was a tough session. We knew that we’re not competitive in the dry. That’s why the victory at Oschersleben was so important for us – it’s ours for keeps. Now we’ll just have to get better acquainted with the car and gradually work our way forwards.”
Wolfgang Schattling, Head of DTM Marketing & Communication: “Our congratulations today go to Marco Wittmann and the entire team at BMW. As for us, we are not where we want to be, sadly, but we had already expected as much before the weekend. Under normal conditions, we would not have been fast enough to win the last race previously in Oschersleben either. Christian's victory there came about through the combination of perfect strategy, a strong team performance and the right weather conditions. We cannot yet achieve that level of performance in the dry, but we are working hard to improve our performance step by step.”