Edoardo Mortara takes grid position three for Audi
- Thrilling DTM qualifying at the Red Bull Ring (Austria)
- Three Audi RS 5 DTM on the first three rows of the grid
- Controversial penalty for leader of the standings Mike Rockenfeller
With grid positions three, five and six, Audi has achieved a solid starting base for the DTM race at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg (Sunday live on “Das Erste” starting at 13:15). The fastest Audi driver in qualifying was last year’s winner Edoardo Mortara in the Playboy Audi RS 5 DTM of Audi Sport Team Rosberg.
“In Q4, I was struggling a bit with warming up the tires,” said the Audi driver. “But I’m happy and satisfied that we’ve found our form from last year again. Last year, I clinched my first victory here. Now we’ve managed the best qualifying this season so far after suffering a lot of misfortune on the first two race weekends.”
The spectators at Spielberg and TV viewers saw another extremely thrilling DTM qualifying session in which the entire field was separated by less than a second. As is often the case in the DTM, hundredths and thousandths decided about being ‘out’ or moving on to the next qualifying segment.
Timo Scheider (AUTO TEST Audi RS 5 DTM/Audi Sport Team Abt) and Mortara’s team-mate Filipe Albuquerque (Audi Financial Services RS 5 DTM) in fifth and sixth place just barely missed the leap into the top four. With Mike Rockenfeller (Schaeffler Audi RS 5 DTM/Audi Sport Team Phoenix) in position eight, another Audi driver made it into the top ten.
“After the victory at Brands Hatch we decided that we’d make a more cohesive showing at the front, and with three Audi RS 5 DTM cars on the first three rows of the grid we managed to do this pretty well today,” commented Dieter Gass, Head of DTM at Audi Sport. “Naturally, we’d have liked clinching the third consecutive pole position but BMW was a little bit faster in this close qualifying. Congratulations to Munich but congratulations also to Edo (Mortara), who made it into Q4 for the third time in succession here at the Red Bull Ring. Now we’re all very eager to see what the weather will be doing tomorrow.”
For race day, changeable weather has been forecast in Styria. And the starting grid will change as well, due to controversial penalties: Before qualifying started, Mike Rockenfeller (8) and Jamie Green (17) were each moved back by five positions on the grid. In the opinion of the sport stewards, both drivers had failed to sufficiently reduce their speed in a dangerous sector in the morning’s free practice. For this reason, the grid positions of Mattias Ekström (15), Adrien Tambay (18) and Miguel Molina (20) are partially provisional at the moment as well.
Audi has been unbeaten in the DTM so far at the new Red Bull Ring in Spielberg. In 2011, Martin Tomczyk won and in 2012 Edoardo Mortara. Fans around the world can watch the race live on the DTM’s new YouTube channel on www.youtube.com/dtmint on Sunday from 13:30. 39 TV channels in total air live coverage of the DTM in 141 countries.
– End –