Old hand Schneider the quickest
Following the Audi one-two in the morning session, it was Mercedes-Benz’ turn to secure the top positions, in the second test session, with DTM Record Champion Bernd Schneider setting the fastest time of the day. On his fastest lap, the German AMG-Mercedes C-Class driver, who resides in Monaco, lapped the Istanbul Park, Turkey’s all new 5.338-kilometre Grand Prix circuit in 1:47.405 minutes, with his brand mate, championship contender Gary Paffett, finishing second, just 0.168 behind Schneider, and Manuel Reuter taking his Opel Vectra GTS V8 to third place.
Behind the fastest of the Opel drivers, two further Mercedes-Benz drivers – Jean Alesi and Bruno Spengler – finished fourth and fifth respectively. Franco-Canadian Spengler was the fastest driver of a 2004-spec car, while Frank Stippler, who been the quickest of session one, in his 2004-spec Audi A4 DTM, had to settle for twelfth place. Heinz-Harald Frentzen and Marcel Fässler (both Opel) took sixth and seventh positions respectively, followed by Mercedes-Benz drivers Stefan Mücke and Jamie Green, with Tom Kristensen, the fastest of the Audi A4 DTM drivers, completing the top ten. Mattias Ekström, the reigning champion and current championship leader, had to settle for 17th place, in session two.
The second test confirmed the situation already experienced in session one: in spite of the track length of more than five kilometres, the DTM field once again proves to be extremely competitive, with the quickest and the 16th, Laurent Aiello, being split by less than a second. Just as it was the case in the morning session, the drivers used the 90 minutes for excessive testing, with Schneider, Häkkinen, McNish and Capello completing 32 laps each.