The 10 stats that put the Interesting into Norisring | DTM
2019-07-03 10:15:00

The 10 stats that put the Interesting into Norisring

DTM’s love affair with the quirky Nuremberg track has lasted more than 30 years – and for good reason.

Norisring: the most uniquely iconic racetrack on the DTM calendar; a race guaranteed to entertain, and a venue that has provided the series with the odd, the unusual and the just-plain-strange for more than 30 years.

Ahead of this year’s blue-riband event, we took a sideways glance at the stats that make the Norisring event such a special weekend…

 

The winning-est winner

Britain’s Jamie Green is the most successful Norisring driver in the DTM’s modern era, winning three consecutive times in 2008, ’09 and ’10. In 2012, a fourth win earned him the nickname ‘Mr Norisring’. Can Green, now driving for Audi, make a comeback from surgery to claim a first Norisring win for the Ingolstadt marque since 2016?

 

Largest winning margin

In 2014, Canada’s Robert Wickens (Mercedes) finished a mighty 23.906s ahead of second-placed Jamie Green. Given the average lap-time is a shade over 48 seconds, Wickens’ advantage equated to almost half a lap of the 2.3km track.

 

Narrowest victory

Klaus Ludwig’s narrow 0.089s margin over fellow Opel driver Uwe Alzen in the first race of the 1996 event still remains the event’s narrowest winning margin. That said, there have been closer margins across the line…

 

Closest-ever finish

… as in 2017, when three drivers from three different manufacturers crossed the line within 0.027s of each other. In Sunday’s race, Edoardo Mortara (Mercedes), Mattias Ekström (Audi) and Marco Wittmann (BMW) crossed the line three abreast battling for third position. Careful examination of the timing and footage revealed that Mortara emerged on top, a tiny 0.002s ahead of Ekström. Wittmann was just 0.025s back!

 

The ‘last-lap heartache’ award…

Bernd Schneider had led comfortably and looked on course for his first win of the 2002 season, but on the final lap, until he braked hard for the Dutzendteich hairpin, and was jumped by Laurent Aiello, who collected his fourth win of the season. Later, Schneider explained that a waved yellow flag had caused him to slow; post-race examination showed there had indeed been a yellow, but that it had been pulled in just as the leader arrived. A bitter pill…

 

What an unlucky shunt…

… but not as unlucky as poor Jan Magnussen. The unlucky Dane holds the accolade for unluckiest shunt in Norisring history – and it didn’t even happen in a race! In 1995, the Mercedes driver had a scooter accident in the paddock which left him with a broken leg and side-lined him for the following two rounds!

 

Most spectacular crash

In 2017, Gary Paffett lost control of his Mercedes after brushing alongside Jamie Green on the high-speed run towards the Grundig hairpin. The Briton’s spinning car heavily collected Mike Rockenfeller’s Audi, the impact causing the German to break his left foot on the clutch pedal. Despite returning to the next race on crutches, he was given the all-clear to race, and finished second at Moscow Raceway.

 

Don’t call it Watergate…

The historic books show no winner for the 2013 race. Why? Audi’s Mattias Ekström had finished first, but he was excluded after it was found that water bottles were emptied into the pockets of his race suit immediately after the race. It couldn’t be proven that it was done on purpose, so while Ekström was stripped of his victory, the drivers behind didn’t move up the order…

 

The first lady

In 2009, British driver Katherine Legge recorded the race’s fastest lap, setting a 48.620s in her Audi A4 DTM. Legge became the first – and, currently, only – female racer to set a fastest lap since the DTM was rebooted in 2000.

 

The New Faces award

In 1991, a young German driver stepped up for a one-off appearance with Mercedes-Benz subsituting for Frenchman Fabien Giroix. He finished 25th in the opening race and retired from the second. His name? Michael Schumacher.

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