At the end of this coming season, Audi Sport’s Mattias Ekström was looking at a strong turn of form, as well as a potential fourth race win at Zandvoort, especially when you consider the “Go Hard Or Go Home” motto that he adopts, that is also emblazoned on the back of his race helmet. The Swede, who has secured two titles with Ingolstadt in both 2004 and 2007, has taken three of his 17 race wins amongst the dunes just off the North Sea coast. However, it seems that the fourth one out of reach this past weekend.
The disqualification may not have set well with Ekström, but he carries on with the task at hand and is still pushing as usual trying to get the maximum out the car, but says that it doesn’t happen instantly. He explained this to theCheckeredFlag.co.uk after his great last-minute dash through the field after the Safety Car period that saw him finish just one step away from Timo Scheider’s final podium place, but still goes ahead to the final race at Hockenheim with a view to have a positive outcome: “There is no quick fix or major changes that you can do, but we are going there positive like always and see if we can make something happen there.”
“Yeah, the strategy was ok, but it was still difficult to overtake guys. In the end, it was pretty good finishing,” Ekstrom said about the strategy call during the race itself, but he is clearly a man that is out for glory at all times. “P4 is not why I go racing, as I go racing to win and to qualify on pole. The philosophy we have is different, so it’s all to do with compromises.”
The three-time Race of Champions winner, who has been in the DTM since 2001, when he debuted with the Abt Sportsline Junior team, is set to look to the future, as his contract with Audi Sport is up for renewal. He did confirm to TCF on Sunday that he has got options on the table for 2014, but there was not much given away at the time. The DTM rumour mill could be swinging into action very soon, as the manufacturers may decide on a few changes for next year, which means a case of who is going where, who is out and who is a new face, trying to make their mark?