Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline driver Nico Müller inherited pole position for Sunday’s DTM finale despite being slower than Audi Sport Team Phoenix’s Mike Rockenfeller in the extremely wet qualifying session this morning at Hockenheim.
The Swiss driver was knocked off the top spot by the 2013 series champion in the final moments of the session, but inherited pole as a result of a five place grid penalty for Rockenfeller.
The Team Phoenix driver has tallied enough race incidents throughout the 2019 season to be handed a grid drop.
Despite not being quickest in the session Müller was positive about his feeling inside the car, and was quick to thank his team for the changes they made overnight.
“The car felt good in the rain today so thanks to the team,” reported Müller, “We changed quite a few things for today.
“I haven’t felt so comfortable this weekend in the wet so far, we needed a little bit more and they gave me exactly what we needed.
Rockenfeller beat Müller’s 1 minute 50.813 second time as the checkered flag flew, and although the Swiss driver felt he could go quicker, emphasised that it’s not as sweet inheriting pole.
“I thought we could have improved a bit at the end but the rain intensified,” reported the 27-year-old, “It very difficult to not make mistakes.
“Obviously a pole position tastes sweeter when you actually have the quickest lap!
“Slightly frustrated by not putting a lap together at the end but I think we were strong all session and i think that makes me comfortable for the race.”
Müller currently sits second in the DTM standings, only 21 points ahead of BMW Team RMG’s Marco Wittmann, and so his championship position is still under threat should he struggle today. However, Müller believes that his ability to heat the tyres quickly will help him to a strong performance in this afternoons race.
“We are not allowed to heat the wet tyre, and to get it up to temp is very difficult,” explained the Audi driver, “Especially the first few laps when we go out of the pits its a nightmare.
“The ones who switch the tyres on quicker definitely have something play into their favour.”