It was a historic moment for all eight of Ingolstadt’s drivers at Oschersleben, as they all were in the points this afternoon, meaning that BMW Motorsport’s reign is under threat in their defense of the manufacturer crown, as Audi Sport closed the gap to just 9 points from its Munich rival.
The variety of strategies, which included that of Mattias Ekström, contributed to this great run of form by the Audi RS5 DTMs for this race meeting. The two-time champion had decided to go onto the standard Hankook tyres for his first two stints, before switching it into high gear by going for the options in the mid part of the race.
This enabled the Swede to pass drivers until he secured seventh place at the very end, leading Miguel Molina, Adrien Tambay and Edoardo Mortara to the finish line after 51 laps of racing. Timo Scheider had his best result of the season, finishing in fifth place, with his AUTO TEST RS5 DTM enabling him to make good progression through the field via several overtakes.
Filipe Albuquerque finally got his first points on the board, finishing just off the podium in fourth place, which was a welcome finish after a strong race for the Portuguese driver after such a difficult season. So the efforts of all the teams at Audi Sport has helped their resolve in trying to close down on BMW, whilst Mercedes-Benz Motorsport is finding itself a further 30 points behind both its rivals, which could also see their battle go down to the wire at Hockenheim. However, a run of points like Audi secured in the race at Oschersleben at Zandvoort could give them one hand on the manufacturer’s title leading into the season finale in Germany.
Audi Sport’s Head of DTM, Dieter Gass, was well pleased with the efforts of all eight drivers, and that this historic moment would have further been sweetened if “Rocky” had won the race, but the points leader has made a step forward: “He’s now got an advantage of 33 points and only one rival left. But there are 50 points yet to be awarded. We’re going to continue to work with concentration in order to clinch the title.”
The glory of becoming “DTM-Meister” is just one step away for Mike Rockenfeller, who is now 33 points ahead of his only rival, Augusto Farfus, who has a chance of winning the title, depending on the 2010 Le Mans winner’s fortunes in the next two races. So what will happen at Zandvoort? We’ll wait and see just what transpires just off the coast of the North Sea, as Holland is the backdrop for the penultimate round of an interesting 2013 DTM Championship for all…