Two weeks after the season opener at Hockenheim, the historic Brands Hatch track in Kent plays host to the DTM. Gary Paffett (EURONICS Mercedes AMG C-Coupé), who is contesting his home race, will be starting from twelfth on the grid. The...
Two weeks after the season opener at Hockenheim, the historic Brands Hatch track in Kent plays host to the DTM. Gary Paffett (EURONICS Mercedes AMG C-Coupé), who is contesting his home race, will be starting from twelfth on the grid. The Englishman missed out by 36 thousandths on the third segment of qualifying after posting a lap time of 41.363 seconds. His Mercedes-Benz team-mate Robert Wickens (stern Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 41.440 seconds) starts from P14 in Sunday’s race.
Placed third in the season-opener at Hockenheim, Christian Vietoris (DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé), finished the first qualifying session in P17 with a time of 41.709 seconds and missed moving into Q2 by 26 thousandths of a second. Roberto Merhi (THOMAS SABO Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 41.748 seconds), Pascal Wehrlein (DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 41.783 seconds) and Daniel Juncadella (stern Mercedes AMG C-Coupé / 41.787 seconds) will start the second race of the season from positions 20 to 22 on the grid respectively. Less than one tenth of a second separated all four drivers from progressing to the second qualifying segment. The small distances between cars in the first qualifying session are a testament to the highly competitive nature of the DTM: A mere four tenths of a second covered all 22 drivers in Q1.
Looking ahead to the race: The second race of the DTM season gets under way (live on ARD television, beginning at 1:05pm) on Sunday, 1:30pm, at the historic Brands Hatch circuit. Martin Tomczyk (BMW / 41.158 seconds) starts from pole position. The race at the shortest track to feature on the DTM calendar covers 98 laps and a total distance of 189.042km. Gary Paffett won his home fixture last year at Brands Hatch from pole position.
Comments after Qualifying
Gary Paffett (32, England, EURONICS Mercedes AMG C-Coupé): 12th, (41.363 seconds)
„Qualifying was a big disappointment. I took pole position last season and went on to win the race – I would’ve liked to repeat that result this year. The balance of the car did not feel too bad, it was alright. I had no major understeer nor oversteer, but unfortunately, we were not fast enough. On this short circuit, three tenths of a second make a big difference. I extracted the maximum out of the car and was on the limit on every lap. Hopefully, by tomorrow we will have found even more speed in the car, and then we can have a clean and fair race in which I aim to secure as many points as possible.“
Robert Wickens (24, Canada, STIHL Mercedes AMG C-Coupé): 14th, (41.440 seconds)
„It was really tight today; anything could have happened. I would obviously have liked to make it through to Q3, but unfortunately, my lap time wasn’t good enough. We need to investigate the reasons for that. We know that our race performance isn’t bad, and with the introduction of DRS and the new option tyres, it should still be possible to finish in the points tomorrow. Also there is the weather factor: if it starts to rain, that could completely reshuffle the pack and shake everything up.“
Christian Vietoris (24, Germany, DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé):17th, (41.709 seconds)
„My position on the grid for the second race of the season is a disappointment after achieving a podium in Hockenheim, for sure. The team did a great job and I don’t blame them – the car felt good. I missed going through into Q2 by only 26 thousandths of a second, so it was extremely close. Qualifying at Brands Hatch is always like trying to balance on a razor blade; you have to be out on track at the right time and cannot afford to make a single mistake on this short circuit. Qualifying is over and done with and cannot be rerun, so we’ll just have to make the best of things in the race. Of course, I hope to pick up at least a couple of points.“
Roberto Merhi (22, Spain, THOMAS SABO Mercedes AMG C-Coupé):20th, (41.748 seconds)
„That was a crazy session. We don’t know why we were lacking the speed to get us into Q2. Obviously, I would have wished for a better