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Mercedes drivers lament Lausitz traffic

Mercedes-Benz drivers Gary Paffett and Jamie Green, who took the manufacturer’s best results once again in the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters at the Lausitzring, lamented the lack of overtaking at the eastern German circuit as they could only manage second and fourth.

Paffett, who won the season opener at the Hockenheimring, maintained his championship lead by finishing in second behind winner Martin Tomczyk, whilst Green remains second in the standings having finished fourth in Lausitz.

However both drivers felt they could have gone faster and were held back by the difficulty of overtaking around the tri-oval’s twisty infield circuit; Paffett finished just 1.019 seconds behind BMW’s Tomczyk.

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“It’s such a pity,” said Paffett. “My Mercedes AMG C-Coupé had enough speed to win again today. I was just a bit too far behind at the pit-stop. Having said that, my car was really quick and had a brilliant set-up, a tribute to the team. I was also so close to Bruno Spengler’s car that I was losing a bit of down force. However, I did give it my all and being second on the podium within the space of a week is a great result for us, especially after the win in the opening race.”

Green started from sixth on the grid and by lap eight was into fourth place, where he would remain until the end of the race. The Brit finished just sixth tenths off a podium finish, but was ultimately unable to pass third-placed Augusto Farfus despite applying sustained pressure on the Brazilian.

“Augusto Farfus drove a fantastic race,” said Green. “I was behind him most of the time, but despite the great pace of my car, I couldn’t get past. Now the focus of my attention has to be on my home race at Brands Hatch where I’m hoping to get back on the podium again.”

Aside from Mercedes’ two Brits the only other driver to score points for the manufacturer was Ralf Schumacher, who admits that he could probably have done better had he started higher up on the grid.

“Our C-Coupé was pretty quick today,” said the former F1 winner. “The car performed flawlessly and the same applies to the strategy and the pit stops. This enabled us to progress from 16th to 10th place. If I can get a better grid position in the next race, I’ll hopefully not get stuck in traffic and be able to compete with the front runners.”

Mercedes-Benz’s Vice President of Motorsport Norbert Haug echoed his drivers sentiments about the difficulty of passing around the Lausitzring, but was full of praise for rivals BMW who took their first win since returning to the DTM.

“Both Gary and Jamie had the speed to secure P1, but at this track it is not enough to simply go faster to be able to overtake,” said Haug. “Gary started the race from third place, a mere 0.043 seconds adrift of pole position. He immediately moved up one position as the race began but was subsequently unable to get past the rear of Spengler’s car, which he was then forced to follow for about 50 laps.

“Congratulations to BMW and Bruno Spengler on their victory and many thanks to our team for their sterling work since the beginning of the season, which has enabled us to head all three championship standings – the drivers’, the team and manufacturers’ championships.”
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