Alzen, Aiello and Schneider across the line, 0.6 seconds apart Packed grand stands, great atmosphere in the paddock and a race that provided action from the first till the final corner: in the seventh season round at the NÃ¼rburgring, the DTM ...
Alzen, Aiello and Schneider across the line, 0.6 seconds apart
Packed grand stands, great atmosphere in the paddock and a race that provided action from the first till the final corner: in the seventh season round at the Nürburgring, the DTM presented itself at its best. After 28 laps, Uwe Alzen (Mercedes-Benz CLK-DTM), Laurent Aiello (Abt-Audi TT-R) and Bernd Schneider (Mercedes-Benz CLK-DTM) crossed the line, only 0.617 seconds apart.
Last year's runner-up was in front for the first time this year: Uwe Alzen, who had started as fastest from qualifying and won both the qualification race and the main event. Schneider drove the fastest race lap. The DTM week-end attracted 73,000 spectators, a new record for touring car race at the Nürburgring. With second place, Aiello extended his points lead to 62 points from Schneider (38) and Mattias Ekström (Abt-Audi, 29). 39 points are still at stake in the remaining three races.
Winner Alzen: "Today a very special highlight"
"I have driven several good races already", the winner said, "but this was a very special one, as it was so close over the entire distance. My conclusion: team happy, I am happy, maybe I finally broke my duck."
Reigning champion Bernd Schneider however was unsatisfied: "After the start, I lost three positions after contact with Christian Abt. That was too bad, as my car was so good that I had all chances of victory. A big hand to my team, that brought me back to third with a perfect pit stop."
Mercedes-Benz motorsport director Norbert Haug commented: "This was a great week-end. The DTM has shown what it is up to: great sport, fair prices and with a concert that our partner ARD has organised today." Thousands of mainly young fans were excited about the performances of boy group "Natural" and pop stars Jeanette and Ben on the ARD-stage in the paddock.
Points leader Aiello: "Championship not yet decided"
Satisfied, yet a little bit pensive was Laurent Aiello, who is marching towards the championship after four victories and second place in the Eifel. "Mercedes is getting closer and closer to us and the advantage we had with our car at the beginning of the season is decreasing. That will be pretty hard towards the end of the season, as I was really being careful into all directions between Uwe Alzen in front of me and Bernd Schneider behind me." The 20-year old team mate of the points leader, Martin Tomczyk, still made it into the points in fifth place, having started 17th.
Opel motorsport director Strycek: "We are racing DTM to win"
Self-critical was Opel motorsport director about the performance of his team. "Manuel Reuter's sixth place and Timo Scheider's seventh place are no reason to be satisfied, because we are racing the DTM to win. Our Astra Coupé is able to match the times of the front runners in the race, that is good. But here, it showed once again that one has no chance to make it all the way to the top when you don't claim one of the top places on the grid in qualifying already." And exactly Opel-driver Alain Menu, who started fifth, retired after a collision.