Marco Wittmann took a welcome first win of the 2018 Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters season in the second race at the Hungaroring, after pit-lane incidents brought out a red-flag stoppage that shortened the race.
A major shift in climate conditions saw the circuit saturated with heavy rain, with Lucas Auer, Edoardo Mortara and Bruno Spengler powerless to control their vehicles on the polished surface of the pit lane, hitting a combination of equipment and personnel in the process.
After a lengthly delay, Wittmann was able to control the race after several drivers needed to pit in the latter stages, with the two-time champion leading a Munich 1-2-3, ahead of Timo Glock who regained his lead in the standings, and Philipp Eng, who took his second podium of the season.
Glock kept focussed after contact between himself and Nico Müller at turn two on the first lap, and now leads the standings by 11 points from Mercedes’ Gary Paffett, whose race unfurled dramatically after the restart, due to the Briton being on wet tyres under rapidly drying conditions.
Mike Rockenfeller was close to fighting Eng for the final step of the rostrum, but would end up just 0.480 seconds behind the Austrian to take fourth, as the 2013 champion had a great race pace to help him move up from starting 16th on the grid.
Paul Di Resta was the best of the Mercedes contingent in fifth, and was able to battle his way after his pit stop to secure further points towards his title hopes, as he now sits 12 points behind countryman Paffett.
Joel Eriksson, Bruno Spengler and Augusto Farfus were also able to help BMW Motorsport secure valuable points, as they secured sixth to eighth positions, with intense battles happening in the last ten minutes of the race.
Both Auer and Mortara would end up completing the top ten, ahead of Robin Frijns, who was 0.422 seconds behind the Italian at the finish line.
Loïc Duval was 12th, ahead of defending champion René Rast, whose Audi RS5 DTM was sent into a spin by slight contact from Paffett at Turn 11 just after the restart.
Daniel Juncadella, who posted the fastest lap of the race, would finish in 13th, ahead of Nico Müller, Pascal Wehrlein, Jamie Green and Paffett.
With regards to the mechanics and marshals involved in the pit lane incidents, no life-threatening injuries have been reported, with the top three opting to not spray champagne on the victory podium after the finish in light of the incidents.
After the restarts, the situations involving Spengler, Auer and Mortara, are being looked into by the stewards, following the incidents in pit lane, which did require the involvement of the on-site medical teams.
Glock now leads the drivers’ standings after the third race weekend of the season, ahead of Paffett, Di Resta, Auer and Wittmann, who are all separated by 39 points.
BMW Team RMR lead the team’s standings by 11 points from Mercedes-AMG Motorsport Petronas, whilst Mercedes still hold a lead over the manufacturers’ standings, which has dwindled to 57 points after this weekend.
The Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters heads to the banks of the Dutzendteich in three weeks’ time, as the Norisring will be the back drop for round four of the season, on the shortest but fastest track on the calendar.
UPDATE – Bruno Spengler, Lucas Auer and Edoardo Mortara were later excluded from the results for having infringed Sporting Regulation Article 30.9, which states that “the driver must reduce speed as soon as he joins the deceleration zone so that he can stop his car at the pits without endangering other participants or the marshals.”
Original race result (subsequently amended)
|1||11||Marco WITTMANN||BMW Team RMG||BMW M4 DTM||26||1:17:50.129||1:38.854||14|
|2||16||Timo GLOCK||BMW Team RMG||BMW M4 DTM||26||5.870||1:38.908||8|
|3||25||Philipp ENG||BMW Team RMR||BMW M4 DTM||26||13.457||1:39.374||15|
|4||99||Mike ROCKENFELLER||Audi Sport Team Phoenix||Audi RS5 DTM||26||13.937||1:39.194||16|
|5||3||Paul DI RESTA||Mercedes-AMG Motorsport REMUS||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||26||16.276||1:39.202||3|
|6||47||Joel ERIKSSON||BMW Team RBM||BMW M4 DTM||26||20.446||1:39.411||17|
|7||7||Bruno SPENGLER||BMW Team RBM||BMW M4 DTM||26||21.181||1:39.319||18|
|8||15||Augusto FARFUS||BMW Team RMG||BMW M4 DTM||26||21.464||1:39.347||12|
|9||22||Lucas AUER||SILBERPFEIL Energy Mercedes-AMG Motorsport||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||26||22.211||1:39.020||1|
|10||48||Edoardo MORTARA||SILBERPFEIL Energy Mercedes-AMG Motorsport||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||26||22.928||1:39.253||4|
|11||4||Robin FRIJNS||Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline||Audi RS5 DTM||26||23.350||1:38.574||11|
|12||28||Loïc DUVAL||Audi Sport Team Phoenix||Audi RS5 DTM||26||23.772||1:39.266||13|
|13||33||René RAST||Audi Sport Team Rosberg||Audi RS5 DTM||26||24.263||1:38.829||6|
|14||23||Daniel JUNCADELLA||Mercedes-AMG Motorsport REMUS||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||26||24.580||1:38.417||7|
|15||51||Nico MÜLLER||Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline||Audi RS5 DTM||26||24.865||1:38.683||9|
|16||94||Pascal WEHRLEIN||Mercedes-AMG Motorsport PETRONAS||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||26||25.185||1:38.608||2|
|17||53||Jamie GREEN||Audi Sport Team Rosberg||Audi RS5 DTM||26||27.098||1:38.562||10|
|18||2||Gary PAFFETT||Mercedes-AMG Motorsport PETRONAS||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||26||1:15.907||1:39.265||5|