DTM Zandvoort, Qualifying: Paffett Second, Schneider Third Mattias EkstrÃ¶m (Audi A4 DTM) was the last driver in the single-lap qualifying and the first with a better time than Paffett. EkstrÃ¶m claimed pole position with a 1:34.051 and a gap of...
DTM Zandvoort, Qualifying: Paffett Second, Schneider Third
Mattias Ekström (Audi A4 DTM) was the last driver in the single-lap qualifying and the first with a better time than Paffett. Ekström claimed pole position with a 1:34.051 and a gap of 0.117sec. Four Audi A4 DTMs, three AMG-Mercedes and three Opel Vectra GTS V8s are in the Top Ten.
In the hard fought qualifying before, Bernd Schneider had been second fastest with a time of 1:33.864 after aborting his first run and completing only one fast lap. Christijan Albers (1:34.417) was ninth fastest with nine thousandths of a second ahead of Gary Paffett (1.34.426) who ended up tenth.
Jean Alesi (AMG-Mercedes/1:35.063) qualified 13th and missed the single-lap qualifying by 0.355sec. Stefan Mücke (CLK AMG-Mercedes/1:35.823) was the fastest driver with a last year's car and will start 17th on the grid. He was followed by Markus Winkelhock (Original-Teile AMG-Mercedes/1:35.935) and Bernd Mayländer (CLK AMG-Mercedes/1:36.309) in 18th and 19th positions respectively. Jarek Janis (Sonax Dark Dog AMG-Mercedes) was 21st with a 1:38.361.
Gary Paffett (C-Klasse AMG-Mercedes), second (1:34.168):
"In qualifying, I made a mistake in the middle sector and ran wide, however, my lap in the single-lap qualifying was almost perfect. The middle sector is very dirty and slippery. After tenth place in qualifying the second place on the grid is a great result and a good basis for the race."
Bernd Schneider (Vodafone AMG-Mercedes), third (1:34.537):
"The car handled very well. I made a mistake under braking at the first corner, but I didn't lose much time and I'm quite happy with my third place."
Christijan Albers (DaimlerChrysler Bank AMG-Mercedes), seventh (1:35.104):
"My first run in qualifying was quite OK, but afterwards I didn't manage to improve further. In the single-lap qualifying's first sector I was faster than Gary who had started before me, but I ran wide in the middle sector and lost time."
Jean Alesi (AMG-Mercedes), 13th (1:34.781):
"I was not satisfied with the car's balance throughout the weekend. There's a lot of work to do, but I'm confident we will solve the problem until the race tomorrow."
Stefan Mücke (CLK AMG-Mercedes), 17th (1:35.823):
"I aborted my last run after I was sideways once. Even without this mistake I had not been able to improve my time significantly. I'm happy to be the fastest driver with a last year's car."
Markus Winkelhock (Original-Teile AMG-Mercedes), 18th (1:35.935):
"I aborted my first run after a mistake under braking. During my second attempt I got stuck behind a driver just exiting the pits and on my third run I made again a mistake under braking. That was it."
Bernd Mayländer (CLK AMG-Mercedes), 19th (1:36.309):
"Since the first test on Friday morning I improved session by session. In qualifying, I had too much brake power at the rear wheels therefore I had to drive carefully. In these circumstances I'm still satisfied with my result."
Jarek Janis (Sonax Dark Dog AMG-Mercedes), 21st (1:38.361):
"I lacked brake pressure and it was not possible to fix the problem during qualifying. Therefore I made only one run."
Norbert Haug, Vice President Mercedes-Benz Motorsport:
"An exciting qualifying with Gary Paffett showing his class. His second and Bernd Schneider's third positions on the grid are a good basis for tomorrow. Congratulations to Gary and our team on their performance. Christijan Albers did not match his and our expectations with seventh place and I expect a significantly better performance for his home race tomorrow."
"Last year, he had won from third place on the grid, however, from seventh this will be more difficult. I believe that six drivers and all three brands will be capable of winning and we look forward to an exciting race in front of a great crowd."