Sunday, July 14, 2024

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Rast wins first race in mixed weather

Rene Rast won the primary race on the Norisring today, which was accompanied by changeable weather conditions. He stated that the conditions were ideal, which allowed the Schubert Motorsport and BMW team to win.

The start was cleaner and more orderly than some seen within the long history of the DTM on the Norisring. Behind polesitter Jack Aitken (Emil Frey Racing Ferrari), Rast’s team-mate Sheldon van der Linde finished a solid second, with Mirko Bortolotti (SSR Performance Lamborghini) third.

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The top six, accomplished by the Winward Mercedes of Maro Engel, Rast and points classification leader Kelvin van der Linde (Abt Audi), had already taken their positions halfway through the second lap.

The first half of the race then saw little change as teams kept an in depth eye on the weather. With heavy rain forecast to reach throughout the 20-minute pit stop window, strategy was prone to be more decisive than any on-track moves.

The anticipation only grew when the marshals called a rain race, and most teams delayed their pit stops until late within the day. To make matters even tougher, the rain didn’t fall until the very end.

Sheldon van der Linde was the primary to blink, his undercut working as he emerged in front of Aitken to take the lead, but each were on slicks and the rain began to fall heavily with 17 minutes remaining within the hour-long race.

While Sheldon van der Linde and Aitken returned to the pits for wet tyres, as did a lot of the others who had fitted slicks throughout the pit stop, the brand new leading duo of Rast and Franck Perera (GRT-Grasser Lamborghini) opted to remain on course.

Both could see the rain was beginning to ease and trusted themselves to complete on slicks. This proved to be the correct alternative as slicks were the tyres to have until the finish line and Rast triumphed in a incredible strategic battle.

Lamborghini factory driver Perera, replacing Christian Engelhart after the German underwent knee surgery, took the rostrum alongside team-mate Luca Engelhart.

He initially struggled to attain any success, ranging from fifteenth position, but he kept his cool, stayed on course and, on slick tyres, moved as much as third with a couple of laps to go.

Nicki Thiim (SSR) and Bortolotti accomplished a successful day for Lamborghini, securing 4 of the highest five positions for the brand, while Kelvin van der Linde overtook his brother to take sixth place.

Aitken dropped to ninth behind Engel, with Maximilian Paul completing the highest ten.

Clara Driver Car engine Delay
1 René Rast BMW
2 Franck Perera Lamborghini 2.272
3 Luca Engstler Lamborghini 37.075
4 Nicki Thiem Lamborghini 44.111
5 Mirko Bortolotti Lamborghini 44.479
6 K. van der Linde Audi 44.956
7 S. van der Linde BMW 47.506
8 Maro Engel Mercedes 50,850
9 Jack Aitken Ferrari 53.488
10 Maximilian Paul Lamborghini 53,749
11 Luca Stolz Mercedes
12 Marco Wittmann BMW
13 Ricardo Feller Audi
14 Thomas Preining Porsche
15 Arjun Maini Mercedes
16 Ayhancan Güven Porsche
17 T. Vermeulen Ferrari
18 Klemens Schmid McLaren
Lukasz Auer Mercedes
Ben Dorr McLaren

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