(Motorsport-Total.com) – In qualifying at Norisring, which was split into two groups due to the large starting field and took place in temperatures of just over 20 degrees, Abt-Audi driver Kelvin van der Linde fought back and sealed his first win of the season on Saturday for the Poles .
© ABT Sportsline
Abt-Audi driver Kelvin van der Linde snatches his first pole of the season at Nuremberg
The South African was faster with 49.236 in Group B (score) than Bernhard Porsche driver Thomas Preining, who led the fastest time in Group A (score) with 49.252 – thus putting Porsche in pole position for the first time. Since van der Linde’s time was faster, Group B will start alternating before Group B (click here for the starting lineup).
“It feels so good and I don’t know what to say,” Van der Linde happily said on ran.de after his drought started last year at Norisring with the controversial title final. “It’s been three long weekends so far, long nights. It was tough, but now we’re here. Now we have to get there in the race – you know how fast you’re going here.”
Capitalizing on the power of Porsche: ‘Everything comes together’
Austrian Breining showed up again after a talent test at Imola, when he nearly finished third, with the fastest time in his group. “The car was great from the start, so thanks to the team,” he said, praising Le Mans legend Timo Bernhard. Was it the perfect course on a 2.3 kilometer circuit? The young man from Linz said, “It is very rare that a roll is perfect, as stated in the textbook. But it was certainly very good.”
Thus he was able to confirm the role of favorite Porsche. “The rear engine certainly helps us, especially in the case of traction,” he explains on ran.de. “Light car, short wheelbase, brake power, good handling – it all comes together here for us.”
And strong newcomers follow in the second row: Turkey’s Ayhankan Goffin, who replaced Nick Cassidy at Ferrari at AF Corse, finished second in Group B, starting with third on the grid. The fourth is working Lamborghini driver Frank Pereira, who replaced patient Rolf Ignition at Grasser. The Frenchman finished second in the first group.
Goffin after fourth: “I was really excited before qualifying”
“First time in Norisring, first time in Ferrari, first time in DTM,” said Goffin, the 24-year-old Red Bull driver. “I was very excited before qualifying, but I am very happy.”
He himself was surprised by the strong result of “ran.de” – his colleague Felipe Fraga starts only from 12th place. “My goal when I came here was just to get to know the motion tracking matrix and show people I have what it takes. Now that I’m starting from P3, I want to stay on the platform.”
But I realize that racing is a “different story,” Goffin says. “Qualifying is all about pushing, but the DTM atmosphere, DTM racing and the stops are new to me. I hope I’m not making any mistakes. I feel like I still have a lot to learn.”
Title candidate Bortolotti is ineligible
After qualifying, who finished fourth in Group A, Grasser-Lamborghini’s Mirko Bortolotti suffered a severe setback: the second-placed driver in the championship was disqualified because, like Preining on Sunday, he did not turn up for the mandatory weigh-in at Imola. This means that the race should start from the end of the field rather than the seventh on the grid.
The best Mercedes-AMG driver was Lucas Auer, who finished third in Group Two and is thus fifth on the grid. He was 0.093 seconds off Van der Linde while only three Mercedes-AMGs made it to the top 16. Abt-Audi driver Rene Rast (3rd in Group A) starts from sixth on the grid.
Rast wasn’t completely satisfied: “I was on a good lap on my second try, but then I made a little mistake on the 3rd turn. I think that would have happened on the lap,” he says on ran.de. “Sixth is fine, but of course I would have preferred first.” Now you have to see what is possible with the strategy, “but I don’t think there are many possibilities.”
Disappointment for BMW: DTM leader Van der Linde only 21.
Rosberg-Audi driver Nico Muller ended up ninth on the grid, while SSR-Porsche driver Dennis Olsen, who damaged his rearview mirror when he hit a wall, Laurens Vanthoor couldn’t live up to high expectations and started from positions ten and 14.
The two BMW drivers were among the disappointments: Marco Wittmann, as the best BMW driver, only started from 13th. DTM leader Sheldon van der Linde did not pass 11th in the first group and lost 0.559sec to Breining. Due to Bortolotti’s elimination, he only starts from 21st. HRT driver Luca Stolz did not drive at all due to gearbox damage and he has to start the race from the penultimate starting position.
The race on the street circuit in Nuremberg, considered the highlight of the DTM season, will start at 1:30pm.
“Twitter advocate. Proud student. Devoted internet specialist. Pop culture aficionado.”