Fässler the quickest in the free practice session
Clenched fists at Opel’s conning bridge at the pit-wall: in the very last minute of the free practice session at the Nürburgring, Marcel Fässler (Opel Vectra GTS V8) set the fastest lap time. The Swiss driver lapped the circuit in 1:23.256 minutes, thus beating the previous fastest time set by Mattias Ekstöm (Audi A4 DTM) by 0.025 seconds. While Bruno Spengler (AMG-Mercedes C-Class), who had held the top position on the time sheets for 50 minutes of the session, finished third, thus once again underlining the competitiveness of the 2004 spec cars, on the Eifel track; just as Christian Abt (seventh) and local hero Frank Stippler (tenth) who also made it to the top ten.
“Our team provided me with a really great car,” beamed Fässler after the practice session. “A good set-up helped me to complete a great lap in the closing stages of the session. Now I’ll give my very best to deliver in similar style, in the qualifying session.”
In the middle of the session, Opel works driver Laurent Aiello experienced an off-track situation in the ‘Querspange’. The Frenchman went off with interlocked front wheels and hit the tyre walls, thus slightly damaging his Vectra GTS V8. At the same time, his team-mate, Heinz-Harald Frentzen, finished fourth, 0259 seconds behind Fässler. While Martin Tomczyk (Audi A4 DTM), the first driver to have beaten the time Spengler had set early in the session, finished fifth.