Six-fold triumph in Saturday’s DTM race at the Hungaroring
Fourth victory this season for title candidate Edoardo Mortara
Audi back in the top spot of the manufacturers’ and teams’ standings
A perfect Saturday for Audi and Edoardo Mortara in the DTM at Budapest (Hungary): On clinching his fourth victory this season, the Audi driver reduced his deficit to Marco Wittmann (BMW) in the drivers’ classification to 14 points.
In the manufacturers’ standings, Audi recaptured the lead with a one-two-three-four-five-six result. Among the teams, Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline ranks in first place again.
It was a historic day for Audi. For the first time ever, an automobile manufacturer managed to secure the top eight positions on the DTM grid with all eight cars – in spite of the fact that qualifying most recently at Moscow and at the Nürburgring had not been its greatest forte.
On clinching his third pole position in the DTM, Edoardo Mortara in the Castrol EDGE Audi RS 5 DTM of Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline secured a perfect starting base for race one.
The Italian who lives in Switzerland subsequently celebrated a commanding lights-to-flag victory and set the fastest race lap as well. “What a Saturday!” the Audi driver beamed following his fourth win this season. “We were instantly fast this weekend. In free practice, everything was going perfectly and in qualifying, too. My start wasn’t brilliant but good enough to defend the lead. Afterwards, I was able to control my advantage and take it easy on the tires and brakes. My Audi RS 5 DTM was simply perfect today.”
The good news for all DTM fans: After the first of the two races in Hungary, it is clear that the decision in the title race will only be made in the finale at the Hockenheimring on October 15/16. Four drivers from all three brands can still secure the drivers’ title, including two Audi drivers, Edoardo Mortara and Jamie Green.
Jamie Green in the Hoffmann Group Audi RS 5 DTM of Audi Sport Team Rosberg missed the top spot on the grid by only 82 thousandths of a second and in the race stayed on Edoardo Mortara’s heels like a shadow. Miguel Molina in the Teufel Audi RS 5 DTM clinched his first podium since his victory at the Lausitzring in May.
Completing Audi’s triumph were Mike Rockenfeller (Schaeffler Audi RS 5 DTM), Nico Müller (Playboy Audi RS 5 DTM) and Adrien Tambay (Speedweek.com Audi RS 5 DTM) in positions four to six. Rockenfeller claimed the best result this season for Audi Sport Team Phoenix for which Timo Scheider in the AUTO BILD MOTORSPORT Audi RS 5 DTM scored points in ninth place as well.
The only driver to finish out of the points on Saturday was Mattias Ekström who in the Red Bull Audi RS 5 DTM, following a fair-to-middling start, was sent off track by a BMW driver while braking on entering turn two. Subsequently, Ekström advanced from 23rd place to position 19 and entertained the trackside spectators – including 2,500 enthusiastic Audi employees from the Gyor plant – with spectacular overtaking maneuvers.
“An awesome day – that’s what you’d have to call it,” said Dieter Gass, Head of DTM at Audi Sport following Audi’s one-two-three-four-five-six result. “We had a really perfect qualifying and a very, very, very good race. When you’re on the front of the grid with eight cars it’s an illusion to believe that you’re going to finish with all eight of them in front as well. But we did it with six of them and that’s fantastic. We’re back in the championship race. And I believe we delivered a good show to the fans and our colleagues from Gyor.”
In race two on Sunday (start at 15:10, live coverage on “Das Erste” beginning at 15:00 CEST), Edoardo Mortara will have the chance of recapturing the lead of the standings and to secure a perfect starting base for the finale at Hockenheim.
In the manufacturers’ standings, Audi, following Saturday’s race, is leading with 554 points, trailed by BMW (527) and Mercedes-Benz (434). In the teams’ classification, Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline has a ten-point advantage over BMW Team RMG.