Hungaroring DTM: Wittmann wins after pitlane drama

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Hungaroring DTM: Wittmann wins after pitlane drama
David Gruz
By: David Gruz
Jun 3, 2018, 1:06 PM

Marco Wittmann won a chaotic Sunday DTM race at the Hungaroring, which was red-flagged when three separate pitlane incidents left marshals and mechanics injured.

Light rain started falling on track shortly after the start but, with conditions not changing drastically, the majority of the field decided to stay out on slicks.

However as the rain increased, Lucas Auer dived into the pits where conditions were already too wet. He couldn't stop his Mercedes as he slid and hit the pit building, as well as a couple of marshals.

As more people pitted a lap later, Edoardo Mortara hit his pit gantry which fell on his car, and Bruno Spengler sent several mechanics flying.

As two ambulances arrived in the pitlane, the race was subsequently red-flagged.

A statement from DTM during the red-flag period said: "An injured marshal has severe leg injuries. Two further people have medium-level injuries.

"None of the injured people is in critical condition, they are all being transported to hospital."

After the start, polesitter Auer led an all-Mercedes top six, but he was overtaken by Pascal Wehrlein as track conditions became greasy.

With Auer, Paul di Resta and Mortara pitting while it was raining, the other three Mercedes cars of Wehrlein, Gary Paffett and Daniel Juncadella led the race after the red flag.

In almost completely dry conditions, Wehrlein easily led, but Paffett, running on wet tyres, instantly started to drop down the field.

He was overtaken by Juncadella at Turn 1 and continuously lost positions, running as low as 17th a lap later and soon pitting.

Paffett's woes allowed Wehrlein to lead with a comfortable gap, but Juncadella rapidly closed in and made a move at Turn 1.

The duo were followed by Nico Muller and Jamie Green, the last drivers to pit, with Philipp Eng leading three of his BMW teammates: Wittmann, Timo Glock and Joel Eriksson.

Juncadella built a 2.8s lead when he pitted with eight minutes left on the clock but could only rejoin 17th due to a sluggish stop.

When all the stops panned out, Wittmann, having passed Eng, took over the lead.

The two-time champion eventually crossed the finish line first to take his first win of the season with Glock taking second, having been sent into a spin by Muller at the start and running last.

With Paffett finishing last, Glock reclaimed the championship lead with an 11-point gap.

Eng completed an all-BMW podium, as he held off a late charge from Mike Rockenfeller.

A rapid di Resta gained several positions late on to take fifth ahead of the BMWs of Eriksson, Spengler and Augusto Farfus. Auer had to settle for ninth ahead of Mortara.

UPDATE: Auer, Mortara and Spengler, the three drivers involved in the pit incidents, were all excluded from the final classification.

The accidents were found to be an infringement of article 30.9 of the regulations, which states: "The driver must reduce speed as soon as he joins the deceleration zone so that he can stop his car at the pits without endangering other participants or the marshals."

All three drivers lost a top 10 finish as a result, with Spengler finishing seventh and Auer and Mortara completing the top 10.

The decision promotes Audi trio Robin Frijns, Loic Duval and Rene Rast into the top 10.

In addition, Mortara and Spengler both have a suspended 10-place grid penalty for the next two rounds as they crashed despite being warned on radio and yellow flags being shown in the pitlane.

Revised race results:

Pos.DriverCarTime/Gap
1 germany Marco Wittmann  BMW M4 DTM 1:17'50.129
2 germany Timo Glock  BMW M4 DTM 5.870
3 austria Philipp Eng  BMW M4 DTM 13.457
4 germany Mike Rockenfeller  Audi RS5 DTM 13.937
5 united_kingdom Paul di Resta  Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM 16.276
6 sweden Joel Eriksson  BMW M4 DTM 20.446
7 brazil Augusto Farfus  BMW M4 DTM 21.464
8 netherlands Robin Frijns  Audi RS5 DTM 23.350
9 france Loic Duval  Audi RS5 DTM 23.772
10 germany René Rast  Audi RS5 DTM 24.263
11 spain Daniel Juncadella  Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM 24.580
12 switzerland Nico Müller  Audi RS5 DTM 24.865
13 germany Pascal Wehrlein  Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM 25.185
14 united_kingdom Jamie Green  Audi RS5 DTM 27.098
15 united_kingdom Gary Paffett  Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM 1'15.907
DSQ canada Bruno Spengler  BMW M4 DTM -
DSQ austria Lucas Auer  Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM -
DSQ italy Edoardo Mortara  Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM -
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About this article

Series DTM
Event Hungaroring
Sub-event Sunday race
Location Hungaroring
Drivers Marco Wittmann
Teams BMW Team RMG Shop Now
Author David Gruz
Article type Race report