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Rockenfeller: “‘Big step’ in title fight”

Photo by Audi AGMike Rockenfeller has hailed his Moscow Raceway win as a ‘big step’ in his fight for the 2013 Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters title, with the German extending his championship lead after main rival Bruno Spengler failed to score.

Rockenfeller secured his second win of the season and the third of his DTM career by beating fellow Audi driver Mattias Ekström to the win in Sunday’s race. In the process, Rockenfeller has extended his championship lead over Spengler to 27 points after the Canadian finished in 19th following contact with Miguel Molina.

“Obviously, this was a really big step in the Championship today,” admitted a delighted Rockenfeller. “It’s great having won here at the DTM’s premiere in Russia. It was a similarly perfect race as at Brands Hatch: starting from the pole position and finishing in first place.”

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Rockenfeller alos added that the circuit seemed to be a good fit for Audi as the Ingolstadt manufacturer notched up its most successful weekend of the season, with five Audi’s finishing inside the top ten.

“We had a great weekend in front of a great crowd,” added Rockenfeller. “The track was a perfect fit for Audi. That I was able to decide qualifying in my favor was the key to success. My guys did a superb job, the car was well prepared and both pit stops went perfectly.”

Audi Sport Team Phoenix’s Director Ernst Moser says the team had everything under control throughout the weekend, although he lamented the loss of Molina on the third lap in the incident with Spengler.

The result means that the Spaniard has now failed to score any points so far in 2013, leaving Rockenfeller’s tally to take the team to second in the team’s championship.

“The race weekend started brilliantly,” said Moser. “We were constantly in the pace from free practice through to qualifying. In the race, we continued to put this on track. Mike drove flawlessly and our strategy was good – we had everything under control and were able to schedule our pit stops the way our competitors did. We’ll be traveling to our home track at the Nürburgring as the leaders of the standings.

“It’s a shame that the race was over after the third lap for Miguel,” added Moser. “His strategy of starting on option tires was right but unfortunately the steering was damaged in a collision. He, too, needs a success experience but we’re going to work on that at the Nürburgring.”

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