Photo and report Willem J. Staat
The DTM world was in schock when Mercedes announced their withdrawal for the 2019 season a few weeks ago in order to concentrate on the electric racing for the future. Unexpected for the DTM world but politically seen not really a surprise and this specifically does not apply to Mercedes only in Germany. Concerning the Dieselgate scandalls manufacturers have to change their customer approach under the current environmental climate. A gain for Formula E and a loss for the DTM Touring Car world. All hopes are now on the new rules which will come into force in 2019. It has been rumoured that the ITR is looking after V6 Turbo-engines. If new manufacturers will join the boat then the series will be saved. If not then the future for the DTM looks very dark…..
But this did not take away anything from the racing at Zandvoort this weekend. For the first Timo Glock took pole under changeable weather conditions and dominated the 37 lap race. It meant his first win of the season and his fourth in 67th DTM race. “A dream with three BMW drivers up front”said Glock after his win. Marco Wittmann finished second and Belgian Maxime Martin third. Mike Rockenfeller and Jamie Green finished in fourth and fifth position for Audi. For Mercedes Paul Di Resta was the best Mercedes driver in seventh place. Mattias Ekström straightly went into the gravel coming out of the pit, but miraclously managed to save it.
In the second race Marco Wittmann crossed the line first but with no fuel in the tank he got disqualified and the win went to Mike Rockenfeller from Audi with Loïc Duval in 2nd. The best DTM race from the Frenchman in 14 starts. In the table-standings Mattias Ekström took the lead from René Rast who suffered a miserable race with a puncture. Lucas Auer lost valuable points entering the pits short before the end of the race and dropped to 15th. For Audi it meant a 1-2-3-4 win whilst Gary Paffett took 5th. In the European F3 championship Briton Lando Norris took two wins for Carlin Motorsport whilst Callumm Illott won R2 for Premapower Racing. In the Northern GT4 Cup the title went to Dutchmen Ricardo van der Ende and Max Koebolt with an Ekris entered BMW M4 GT4.