Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline’s Robin Frijns scored his first DTM podium since the second race of the season at Hockenheim, and after a difficult Saturday at Brands Hatch the Dutch driver was pleased with the third step on the rostrum behind Audi Sport Team Rosberg’s René Rast and Abt Sportsline teammate Nico Müller.
Frijns started the Sunday race from third on the grid as a result of a strong qualifying performance, putting him in a position to challenge for the podium. On the opening lap the Dutch driver steered clear of any drama after being passed by Müller, and focused on preserving his Hankook tyres in the first stint.
“The start was decent, I was behind Nico and René,” explained the 28 year old, “I just saved my tyres by not being close to anyone in front of me.”
After making his compulsory visit to the pitlane on lap 13, Frijns found himself leading a train of cars including the Audi Sport Team Phoenix car of Loïc Duval, and the charging BMW Team RMR car of Philipp Eng.
However, Frijns was confident that he could defend his podium position in the closing laps of the race.
“It’s not the easiest thing overtaking, it is difficult at Brands,” described the Audi driver, “Loïc and Eng behind me had DRS and I know the situation, how hard it is to pass.
“I was in the position I wanted, in P3 behind the two championship leaders.”
In what was a dominating day for Audi, first the manufacturer locking out the first eight places on the grid for Sunday’s race, and then bringing home a 1-2-3-4, Frijns argued that the BMW cars of Eng and BMW Team RMG’s Marco Wittmann were actually competitive on pace.
“I’m not sure about race pace today, both Eng and Wittmann were quick,” reported the Dutchman, “They were just in traffic, so we don’t really know the pace they really had.
“It’s quite hard to judge where everyone is at pace wise. I wouldn’t say we have a big advantage over BMW.”