Bad luck for Müller – Wehrlein’s switch problem
BMW were the dominators and winners of the seventh DTM weekend of the season, held at Oschersleben. In both races, the Bavarian’s celebrated a one-two-three-four, with a total of seven cars making it to the points. In addition, it was a very special race meeting for Timo Glock and Tom Blomqvist: on Saturday, Glock clinched the first pole of his DTM career to afterwards also win the race in superior style. And on Sunday, DTM rookie Blomqvist secured the first DTM win of his career with a remarkable and impressive performance. Nonetheless, BMW and their drivers didn’t make it to the top of every statistics ranking, in the two races at Oschersleben. Where they didn’t? Please find out in the first part of our first selected postscripts.
The driver with the shortest track time in the races was Nico Müller: The Swiss definitely will have anything but fond memories of the chicane at the end of the home straight. The chicane meant the end of his race in both rounds – and right after the start. In race one, he was hit by Mercedes-Benz driver Robert Wickens when the field entered this bottle neck for the first time and Wickens braked too late. The Mercedes-Benz hit the Audi while entering the first corner, turned it around and damaged it seriously. And although Müller could continue for the time being, the damages forced him to pit and retire on lap 13. And on Sunday, #51 had to cope with an even worse outcome: this time, Lucas Auer who tried to avoid getting involved in a collision of Christian Vietoris and Miguel Molina pushed Müller into the gravel – and his race was over. At the end of the day, Müller completed just 13 race laps, over the course of the weekend – less than anybody else. “Due to the weight situation we didn’t travel to Oschersleben with particularly high expectations,” Müller admitted afterwards, “But making it to the finish line would have been nice. But instead of doing so, I was forced into retirement twice – by two accidents caused through no fault of my own. The accident on Sundays was particularly annoying as I had made a good start. But this kind of days just happen. We will forget about it and want to really go for it, in the final two rounds of the season.”
The driver who set the theoretically fastest race lap was Bruno Spengler: in the Saturday race, the Canadian finished second behind Timo Glock. And the same applied to the fastest race lap: here, Glock also was faster than his team-mate. When it came to the theoretically fastest race lap, however, Spengler was faster – by a tininess. In sector one, the BMW driver (32.117 seconds) was the third-fastest, in the second section he set the fastest split time (27.380 second) and in the third, only one driver was faster than his 22.637-split time. The addition of these personal fastest split times achieved by Spengler on different laps would have resulted in a theoretical lap time of 1:22.134 minutes. Second place in this area was secured by Timo Glock with 1:22.138 minutes – just four thousandths of a second behind Spengler. Third position in this ranking was cinched by the Sunday winner, Tom Blomqvist. On the way to his success he was the only driver to regularly cross the line of the 3.696-kilometre circuit in less than 1:23 minutes. And theoretically, the rookie had achieved a fastest lap time of 1:22.229 minutes.
Meanwhile, Pascal Wehrlein made for the weirdest scene of the weekend: In the Sunday race, the championship leader worked hard on closing in on fourth-placed António Félix da Costa when he received a radio message of his mechanic: “Pascal, your pit-stop light doesn’t work. Switch it on.” During the pit stop, his pit crew had forgotten to switch on the light on that indicates for the spectators that a driver already made his pit stop. Despite the stressful situation, Wehrlein tried his best to do what he had been asked for – but without success. At first, that is. Wehrlein’s question: “Where do I have to do that?” And a few corners later, the red light was shining – Wehrlein had found the button and was praised by his team: “Well done, Pascal.” The stewards, however, detected the mistake, nevertheless. After the race, the team received a €1,000 fine.
The fastest pit stop was executed by the team of Mike Rockenfeller: On Sunday, Audi Team Rosberg was really fast and consequently, their service for Mike Rockenfeller’s car turned out to be the fastest of the entire race. Rockenfeller needed 52.105 seconds from entering the pit lane to rejoining the race, thus securing first place in this ranking. Unfortunately, the quick stop didn’t help him as he had to pit again a short time later to retire. Several problems on his car made an early end to his race. Meanwhile, the Sunday race ran slightly better for Jamie Green: The Briton came eighth in the second round of the Oschersleben meeting and with this result, he was the only Audi driver who made it to the points. He spent 52.288 seconds in the pit lane – the second fastest pit stop of the weekend helped him passing BMW’s Maxime Martin who consequently had to settle for finishing ninth. Third position in the pit-stop ranking was secured by Bruno Spengler who executed his stop in 52.334 seconds.