Elgaard and Magnussen are fighting for the DTC title The two most recent champions are separated by 10 points at the top of the table Following the traditional late-August double-header at Jyllandsringen the 2005 Danish Touringcar ...
Elgaard and Magnussen are fighting for the DTC title
The two most recent champions are separated by 10 points at the top of the table
Following the traditional late-August double-header at Jyllandsringen the 2005 Danish Touringcar Championship is turning out to become a duel between the two most recent champions in the series. On each day 2003 title holder Jan Magnussen won the pre-final, while reigning champion Casper Elgaard claimed the more prestigious wins in the finals, where the top five drivers from the pre-final have their starting positions reversed. The end result of the weekend is that the pair are separated by just 10 points at the top of the table.
For Saturday's round 6 of the series Casper Elgaard and team mate John Nielsen made disastrous performances during the single lap Super Pole qualifying and thus had to start the pre-final from row six, while Henrik Lundgaard and Jan Magnussen occupied the front row. When the lights turned to green Jan Magnussen romped away into a lead he was never to loose, and behind him Jens Edman and Henrik Lundgaard tangled and took impressive privateer Martin Pedersen out of the race as well. Although Casper Elgaard benefited from this, it was more through his overtaking skills that he ended the race in second place.
For Saturday's final Magnussen got another good start from the third row, but got too overoptimistic in the opening corner and triggered a minor collision from which he suffered the most, dropping down to twelfth position. Instead Henrik Lundgaard was leading from Casper Elgaard, but the latter soon sailed by to take the eventual win. Meanwhile Jan Magnussen progressed up through the field and was holding seventh position midway through the race, when the safety car was sent out. When this left the circuit he found himself watching a battle between series returnee Kurt Thiim and Philip Andersen, and when the former finally found a way past Philip Andersen, Jan Magnussen surprised everybody by diving inside both of them almost simultaneously!
Sunday's two races were more or less repetitions of Saturday's races. This time, however, Jan Magnussen did not take the start in the pre-final. Instead Henrik Lundgaard led through the first corner, but soon he let his team mate get by to gain more points and instead concentrated on creating a driving shield behind, holding off Jens Edman for many laps, until the fast-driving Swede finally found a way by. Behind them Casper Elgaard -- running with 45 kilos of ballast -- had decided to let team mate John Nielsen by, and it looked as if the veteran could also challenge Henrik Lundgaard. As he did not succeed in this, he elected to drop back on the finishing line, handing valuable points to Casper Elgaard.
Having finished fourth and fifth the two BMWs of Casper Elgaard and John Nielsen shared the front row for the final, and they also held the two leading positions on the opening lap. A start line accident forced the use of a safety car, but when the mess was cleared, Jan Magnussen in third soon put the pressure on John Nielsen. Going into a tight right hander, John Nielsen opened the door slightly and Jan Magnussen instantly tried to use this. However, the pair collided, and as John Nielsen retired with broken suspension, Jan Magnussen was awarded a penalty lane, which made it much easier for Jens Edman to move by and take another second place on a day, when the Peugeot 307 was having its best 2005 performance of the Jyllandsringen.
The collision also deranged Jan Magnussen's steering, but as he was followed by Henrik Lundgaard he did not risk loosing more positions, as team tactics were in full use in an effort to keep Jan Magnussen as close as possible to Casper Elgaard in the standings.