Rockenfeller fastest – BMW following closely
Audi driver Mike Rockenfeller was fastest in first free practice of the DTM weekend at Zandvoort with a lap time of 1:32.009 minutes. The first BMW followed, only eight thousandths of a second down: on Friday afternoon, António Félix da Costa set the second-fastest time. His fellow BMW driver Augusto Farfus ended up in third place.
Mike Rockenfeller is considering his practice result as a good sign: “It is a very, very small start of the turnaround for me. But of course, concluding free practice in first place is better than being further down the ranks. The long-run was okay as well, which was also important. We still have some minor things that we can improve, but I am feeling considerably better in the car than before.”
For BMW, it was an altogether good start: five of the six fastest drivers are employed by the brand from Munich. Next to Rockenfeller, three further Audi drivers also made into the top ten. In Stuttgart, a glance at the timing sheets will cause less excitement: only Gary Paffett flew the flag for Daimler in ninth place.
What the opposition feared already could become reality: BMW is benefiting from the reduced basic weight and achieves the turnaround at Zandvoort. However, the final word hasn’t been said yet, because it will only get really serious in qualifying. The battle for the best starting grid positions starts on Saturday at 14.55 hrs. Here, the foundation for a good result in the race will be laid. The race will get underway at 18.03 hrs, with the rays of the evening sun serving as the backdrop for thrilling racing action.