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Audi thinking of manufacturers’ title at Zandvoort

Photo by Audi AGAudi are aiming to move back to the top of the manufacturer’s title race at Zandvoort, as the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters makes its annual trip to the Netherlands for the penultimate round of the season.

Audi are currently second to BMW in the manufacturers’ standings, despite not having taken a win all season. With BMW 18 points in front and only two races to go, however, Audi’s Head of DTM Dieter Gass knows that the marque must take advantage of the fact that the coastal circuit has in the past suited them.

“Zandvoort is a track that suited us really well in the past,” says Gass. “We’re aiming to clinch the good team result we’d been wishing for at the Lausitzring and that certainly would have been possible following our good performance in qualifying.

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“The title in the manufacturers’ classification remains our aim – that’s why bringing as many of our cars as possible into the points will be crucial.”

Indeed Audi have three drivers inside the top ten in the championship, with Mattias Ekström, Edoardo Mortara and Mike Rockenfeller all vying for the runner’s up spot in the championship.

Italian Mortara is equal with Ekström on points and highlights his previous form – including victory in 2012 – as reasons to be optimistic this weekend after a pointless weekend last time out at the Lausitzring.

“The weekend at Lausitz was disappointing for me, so it’s perfect that we’re racing again in just two weeks from now – and at Zandvoort of all places where I’ve won before,” said Mortara. “We’ve still got two more chances of scoring points and victories this year – and we’re going to use them.”

Swede Ekström though is also no stranger to success at the sandy circuit, having taken his first-ever DTM victory at the venue back in 2002 and gone on to win three times in 14 years of racing at the track in the DTM.

“It’s no secret that Zandvoort is one of my absolutely favourite tracks,” admitted the former double champion. “I’ve won there three times and always enjoy traveling there. Not just because of my previous success but also because the track is simply great fun.

“My aim: I’ll take the qualifying performance from the Lausitzring and the performance from the previous races and combine them into a perfect weekend.”

Aside from champion Marco Wittmann, only three drivers are statistically unable to challenge for second in the driver’s championship this weekend, with 11 drivers within one race win of the position.

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