Frijns incident ‘cost me the race’: Wittmann on Zolder penalty

Frijns incident ‘cost me the race’: Wittmann on Zolder penalty

Photo: BMW

BMW Team RMG driver Marco Wittmann came in to DTM’s first weekend at Zolder in 17 years as the championship leader.

However, a mid-race incident with Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline driver Robin Frijns stopped him scoring points for the fourth race in a row.

The stewards deemed that Wittmann had tagged the rear-left corner of the Audi car, pitching it into a spin on the exit of turn one. The two-time DTM champion was handed a drive-through that dropped him out of competitive running.

“We had good pace again but the accident with Robin Frijns resulted in a drive-through penalty that cost me the race.”

From inside the car, the 29 year old had a different view as to how the incident occurred.

“I was trying to get past him when he skidded sideways on turn one and came over to my racing line.

“I was lapping faster on fresh tyres and hit him, which spun him around.”

Wittmann had extended his first stint, pitting six laps later than Frijns. With the highest track temperatures all weekend, tyre management was key, and it became clear that fresh Hankook rubber gave a considerable pace advantage.

After the resulting safety-car from the collision, Wittmann was in fifth before serving his penalty. He would eventually finish in 13th position.

“From my point of view, there was hardly anything I could have done to avoid it. Of course, that was a shame.”

Leaving the Belgian circuit, Wittmann has dropped to third in the standings with 43 points, 16 behind the championship leading BMW Team RMR driver Philipp Eng.