Duval leads Audi surge at Lausitzring
Ahead of Sunday’s landmark 500th DTM race, Audi driver Loïc Duval came out on top of free practice with a time of 1m35.985s, the fastest time of the day set during the morning session.
In FP1, the Frenchman finished 0.232s ahead of BMW’s Marco Wittmann, who concluded the session in second place, followed by the Audi quartet of Jamie Green, Robin Frijns, championship leader René Rast and Pietro Fittipaldi.
“I had a good session,” Duval said. “I had a good feeling with the new set of tyres. Not fantastic, but that was the same for everyone. I struggled a bit with the tyres on the last few laps, so let’s see how we can manage them in terms of set-up and driving style.”
Wittmann said: “It was a good start to the weekend, but in the DTM, you shouldn’t overestimate practice sessions.” Brit Jake Dennis was fastest R-Motorsport Aston Martin driver in 12th place at the end of first practice.
Later in the afternoon, Audi again topped the timesheets, locking out the first six places in second free practice. Briton Green topped the time sheets with 1m36.000s, with Duval confirming his strong performance from earlier in the day with second-fastest time, only four thousandths of a second down on Green. Fellow Audi drivers Frijns, Aberdein, Rast and Müller followed in third to sixth places respectively.
“I never put too much emphasis on the headline lap times in free practice,” Green admitted afterwards. “You never know what other people are doing with fuel levels and their general programme, but we are at the top of the list, which is obviously not a bad thing, but the main time to do that is on Saturday and Sunday morning, so that’s what we are aiming to do tomorrow.”
In seventh place, Marco Wittmann again was the fastest BMW driver, with Juncadella posting the fastest time of the R-Motorsport Aston Martin drivers, in 15th.