Sheldon van der Linde finished second in race one and Marco Wittmann finished third in race two as the DTM series ran on the Lausitzring on August 15 and 16.
Audis won both races, but the performance of the M4 DTM was stronger in the Lausitzring event than it had been in the season opener at Spa Francorchamps two weeks earlier.
In race one, van der Linde moved into second after pit stops, and closed in on Audi’s Nico Müller to challenge for the lead. But the BMW racer’s tires faded near the end, giving Müller an edge. Still, van der Linde was able to hang on to second ahead of Audi’s Robin Frijns. Three more M4 DTM racers finished in the points; Marco Wittmann was fourth, Timo Glock was fifth, and Philipp Eng was ninth.
In race two, Marco Wittmann ran near the front of the pack most of the way, getting by Frijns late in the race to finish third behind Audi racers René Rast and Nico Müller. Three more BMW racers finished in the points; Glock was sixth, Eng was seventh, and Jonathan Aberdein was ninth. After an early stop, van der Linde ran in the top five, but tire wear late in the race set him back to fifteenth at the finish.
After the second race, BMW Motorsport director Jens Marquardt said, “Marco Wittmann’s podium is a real highlight, as it is the 300th podium for BMW in the DTM—another milestone in our long history in this racing series. Marco drove a superb race and pulled off a brilliant and intelligent overtaking maneuver shortly before the finish, which ultimately earned him third place. Compliments to everyone on landing four BMW M4 DTMs in third, sixth, seventh, and ninth places after the tough qualifying session. We focused on the race from the outset today, which meant making a compromise in qualifying. We must do a better job of coping with that compromise next week, as the race is obviously easier the further up the grid you start. I feel sorry for Sheldon van der Linde. We called him in early for his pit stop, which catapulted him up the field. Unfortunately, his tires gave up in the end. On the whole, we have taken a big step forward compared to Spa-Francorchamps. We must back that up next week. Congratulations to René Rast on his win.”
The series returns to the Lausitzring for two more races next weekend.—Brian Morgan
[Photo courtesy BMW Motorsport.]