Race one of Round Three of the 2020 DTM season had it’s fair shares of thrills and spills with the race starting in wet conditions and causing traction issues right from lights out.
Robin Frijns began the race in pole with René Rast beside him and championship leader Nico Müller sitting in third on the grid.
This weekend’s races are once again taking place at Lausitzring but on the longer 4.345 km (2.7 mile) Grand Prix track in a change to last week’s shorter circuit.
The wet track led to Frijns and Rast falling back quite quickly which allowed the BMW of Philipp Eng to progress up to third place leaving Frijns and Müller to battle for first position all within lap one. Marco Wittmann’s BMW showed some early promise and fought hard throughout the race. After Rast slid off the track, Wittmann took his opportunity and then battled against Rast for a number of laps.
The pitstop strategies had to be well thought out today, the track was drying out but there were still some rather wet patches to deal with. After his pitstop, Müller really struggled to get his tyres up to temperature which led to both Wittmann and Rast overtaking him with ease.
Rast was then in second position and spent a number of laps in a fierce battle with Frijns with plenty of nudging and rubbing going on eventually leading to Rast taking first place with Müller then beating Frijns to take reclaim second position.
The last few laps saw Rast extending his lead over Müller by a comfortable margin before taking the checkered flag for his second win of the 2020 season. Frijns crossed the line in third followed by the BMW of ex-Formula 1 driver Timo Glock.
Müller still leads the DTM championship with a total of 121 points.
“What a crazy race!” exclaimed race winner Rast. “I started on rain tires, then switched to slicks, briefly in the gravel trap, came back and won in the end. Of course, I’m happy with the result, no question about it. But we can’t be 100% satisfied, we have to keep going work on our performance and improve the handling. It’s an up and down, the season is still young and the competition remains strong.“
“We all saw an exciting race. This third race at the Lausitzring provided mixed and treacherous weather conditions for the third time.” Said General Manager of BMW Motorsport Vehicle Development, Rudolf Dittrich. “We had a very wet and slippery circuit for qualifying before the asphalt started drying during the race. Philipp Eng made a very good start and Marco Wittmann held his ground with the leading pack. On the other hand, we also lost some places during the confusion in the wet conditions at the start, however, all the drivers had a largely error-free race and we were able to reclaim some positions. The timing of the decision to switch from wet-weather tyres to slicks was decisive as the circuit dried out. Our strategy allowed us to gain plenty of time and improve by a few places. Timo Glock’s recovery performance was particularly impressive as he moved up from 14th on the grid to fourth. Overall though, we were unable to keep up with the pace of the fastest Audis. We have to continue to work on that to make sure that we improve the setup for qualifying and the race tomorrow.”
DTM Lausitzring Race 1 Results
|RENÉ RAST||AUDI SPORT TEAM ROSBERG||57:50.862|
|NICO MÜLLER||AUDI SPORT TEAM ABT SPORTSLINE||+1.969|
|ROBIN FRIJNS||AUDI SPORT TEAM ABT SPORTSLINE||+4.922|
|TIMO GLOCK||BMW TEAM RMG||+7.590|
|MARCO WITTMANN||AUDI SPORT TEAM PHOENIX||+13.731|
|TIMO GLOCK||BMW TEAM RMG||+20.395|
|MARCO WITTMANN||BMW TEAM RMG||+13.282|
|MIKE ROCKENFELLER||AUDI SPORT TEAM PHOENIX||+19.371|
|LOÏC DUVAL||AUDI SPORT TEAM PHOENIX||+20.273|
|PHILIPP ENG||BMW TEAM RBM||+21.829|
|SHELDON VAN DER LINDE||BMW TEAM RBM||+22.665|
|JAMIE GREEN||AUDI SPORT TEAM ROSBERG||+25.389|
|FERDINAND HABSBURG||WRT TEAM AUDI SPORT||+26.431|
|LUCAS AUER||BMW TEAM RMR||+29.221|
|FABIO SCHERER||WRT TEAM AUDI SPORT||+29.610|
|JONATHAN ABERDEIN||BMW TEAM RMR||+43.323|
|HARRISON NEWEY||WRT TEAM AUDI SPORT||+51.275|
|ROBERT KUBICA||ART GRAND PRIX||+1:09.158|