Figures please! René Rast the Sunday champ
In the past season, René Rast proved to be the best driver on the Sundays. Had the championship comprised only these 10 races the Audi driver’s title defence campaign had been successful. In the second rounds of the 10 race meetings the Audi driver added a total of 145 points to his tally, followed by champion Gary Paffett (131) and fellow AMG-Mercedes driver Paul Di Resta (116). On the Saturdays, the three drivers that also secured the top-three positions in the championship once again proved to be in a class of their own. This time, Paffett held the lead with 124 points, thus outperforming Di Resta (117) and Rast (106). Particularly noticeable: the consistency of Paul Di Resta who delivered on the same level on both days of the race meetings.
Meanwhile, there were quite a number of drivers who were clearly less consistent. Marco Wittmann, for instance, had to settle for having finished eighth in the Saturday ranking with just 50 points scored while the 114 points he added to his tally on Sunday would have been enough four coming fourth – the championship position he actually secured, in the end. “I possibly was the DTM Sunday driver, this year,” said the German. “But joking aside: On the Saturdays we sometimes hadn’t the racing luck it takes to succeed but we also failed to fully get our act together, sometimes. At the same time, we nearly always succeeded in improving the car from Saturday to Sunday. Therefore, we were more competitive on Sunday and so, our results in the Sunday races also were better. At the Norisring and at Budapest I was able to win the Sunday rounds and in addition, I made it to the podium in the Sunday rounds at the Nürburgring, the Lausitzring and in the season finale at Hockenheim. Therefore, our goal for the 2018 season must be to deliver on a consistently high level on both days.”
Joel Eriksson and Lucas Auer also had to cope with particularly big performance differences between the two days of the race weekends. The Swedish rookie was DTM’s ‘secret’ Sunday champ. On the Saturdays he scored just 4 points but on Sunday he delivered in fine style: Including his first DTM win, in one of the two night races at Misano, Eriksson scored a total of 68 points, in the Sunday rounds – inter alia thanks to his fourth place in the season kick-off at Hockenheim and his fifth place at Spielberg. Meanwhile, Lucas Auer virtually could have stayed in bed on the Sundays. The Austrian scored a total of 121 points and only 20 of them on the Sundays of the race meetings, with Audi’s Jamie Green (14) being the only driver who scored less points on Sunday. On Saturday, however, Mercedes-AMG’s Auer secured all his four podiums and proved to be the fourth-best driver on the grid. “On Sunday I had to cope with more incidents,” revealed Auer. “Therefore, I couldn’t score as many points as on the Saturdays.”