All are after Abt Sportsline during the DTM at the Sachsenring With the many Abt and Audi fans alongside the track, the fourth round of the DTM (Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters) at the Sachsenring is almost a home race for Abt Sportsline. The team...
All are after Abt Sportsline during the DTM at the Sachsenring
With the many Abt and Audi fans alongside the track, the fourth round of the DTM (Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters) at the Sachsenring is almost a home race for Abt Sportsline. The team from Kempten can do with the support: after the first third of the season, points leader Laurent Aiello is still the one they are all after, the fight for the championship is in full swing. So, the best conditions for the event at the fascinating track, that the five Abt-drivers are unanimously rating among their favourite venues on the DTM-calendar.
"Before the season, I have said that we were facing the hottest year in the DTM. I think, I didn't promise too much", says team boss Hans-Jürgen Abt, whose team had a true dream start: following two double victories in the first two rounds, Christian Abt and Mattias Ekström achieved the nearly impossible at Donington, making it all the way up from 20th on the grid and from the pit lane respectively to a podium finish. "That clearly shows what can happen in the DTM and how exciting the remaining seven rounds will be," says Hans-Jürgen Abt.
For the Team Abt Sportsline, the Sachsenring has been the place for good memories for many years already: in 1999, Christian Abt and Kris Nissen celebrated a double victory in the opening round of the STW-championship. With the first-ever success of a privateer team in the STW, the team also laid the foundation for the sensational title win three years ago. "Therefore, this race will always remain something special for us", explains team boss Hans-Jürgen Abt.
In order to add another chapter to Abt Sportsline's successful history at the Sachsenring, the team has by no means taken a break after the successful first three rounds of the current season. On their way to the Sachsenring, the yellow-blue MAN-Trucks stop at Hockenheim, where Martin Tomczyk is carrying out a test session with his Abt-Audi TT-R in order to work out a few details for the week-end. "Even when we are working determined and hard on the Friday before a race, there frequently still are points being left unconsidered. And for once, we want to work on them quietly", says chief technician Albert Deuring.
Before the fourth round of the season, Laurent Aiello is leading the DTM's drivers' points standings with an eight points margin, Mattias Ekström is third from Christian Abt. With Martin Tomczyk (sixth place) and Karl Wendlinger (ninth place), all five Abt drivers are among the top ten of the championship after three rounds. Abt Sportsline is leading the team classification as well.
Quotes before the race
Christian Abt (#10):
"The Sachsenring has always been my favourite track. For me, the circuit is like a little Nordschleife, albeit much more up-to-date. There are really fast parts, for which you need a lot of courage. Here, I have scored my maiden victory in the STW championship, back in 1999, so it would be fitting if I would also claim my maiden DTM-victory here. In any case, we want to provide a good show for the many Abt and Audi fans that will be at the Sachsenring."
Laurent Aiello (#3):
"I mainly have used the past days to get the Donington-round out of my system. But once each year, you have a week-end in which nothing goes. Now, I am looking forward to the Sachsenring, where I would like most to continue where I stopped in Zolder. Now, the fight for the top in the DTM is really beginning."
Mattias Ekström (#9):
"I really like the Sachsenring. It was the track, where I made the big step forward last year and made some kind of breakthrough. I think that the track suits my driving style as it has many demanding combinations of corners."
Martin Tomczyk (#23):
"After the Donington round at the latest, I know, that I can race at the front in this year's DTM. And when my chain of bad luck on Sundays will finally come to an end, I will do everything to convert my speed into a good result and championship points. I hope that this will already be the case at the Sachsenring, because it is great fun to drive at this track."
Karl Wendlinger (#4):
"The last time I drove at the Sachsenring was in the STW 1996. I think that our car will work very well at the track. For the next race, we have still found and improved a few details, so my TT-R should be good for a podium finish by all means. And exactly that is my goal."