Oschersleben: analysis, part 2 | DTM
2005-06-29 20:50:45

Oschersleben: analysis, part 2

Oschersleben: analysis, part 2

What a DTM weekend, at Oschersleben! During the course of the past weekend, a crowd of 88,000 travelled to the MOTOPARK to witness a thrilling and multi-faceted fifth round of 2005 DTM season. On Saturday, a massive thunderstorm caused a diversified qualifying session, with the lap times being improved second by second. And during the race on Sunday, the hot conditions (more than 30° C) heated up both the crowds on the grandstands and the drivers. Gary Paffett, however, kept his cool, clinched his second win of the season and succeeded in closing the gap to championship leader Mattias Ekström to just one point. Nevertheless, the Swede defended his lead by finishing second, while rookie Jamie Green took third place, thus securing his maiden DTM podium finish. www.dtm.de has taken a close look at the performances of teams and drivers.

Stefan Mücke: wets in the beginning, slicks later – and at the end of the qualifying session, he ran out of time. The result: 13th on the grid. In the race, the Berliner delivered an unobtrusive performance, and at a certain point in time, during the course of the pit stops, he held seventh position. At the end of the 44-lap race, he finished eleventh.
Grade: 3

RChristian Abt: there was one fact nearly all the drivers agreed on: the Motopark doesn’t offer a lot of overtaking opportunities, therefore, a good grid position is a must if you want to gain a good result. Christian Abt, however, succeeded in gaining five positions. From his 17th grid position, the Allgäuer drove an unobtrusive race but worked his way up to twelfth place.
Grade: 3

Jean Alesi: a weekend to forget for Jean Alesi, the winner of the season opener. Because of the wrong tactics he qualified only 19th. In the race, the Frenchman succeeded in gaining seven positions, but altogether, he clearly failed to meet the expectations.
Grade: 4

Heinz-Harald Frentzen: in the qualifying session, the German provided the crowds with the arguably most spectacular scene. In his second stint, HHF went off in turn 4, thus damaging both the body and the underbody of his car. Therefore, he had no more chance of improving his qualifying time. He started the race from the 14th position on the grid, was already ninth at the end of lap one – but when the race was over, he had dropped back again to 14th place.
Grade: 4

Manuel Reuter: a tyre gamble usually produces both winners and losers: this Saturday, Manuel Reuter belonged to the latter group. Twelve minutes into the session, Reuter held provisional pole, but the fastest times were set in the closing stages when Reuter had no more laps available. At the end of the day, he qualified 18th. In the race, he could improve by three positions, but that was that.
Grade: 4

Bruno Spengler: the Canadian joined the hunt for the grid positions rather late – and was rewarded for his gambling: seventh on the grid. In the race, he made a bad start and dropped back to tenth place. Hampered by a massively understeering car, he wasn’t able to benefit from his promising grid position and finished 16th. A disappointing result.
Grade: 5

Pierre Kaffer: only 15th in the qualifying session, while his team-mate, Frank Stippler, proved that a better grid position could be achieved even with a 2004 spec car. For a long time, Kaffer held 14th place, behind Jean Alesi, but he lost several positions due to an off-track moment in the closing stages and crossed the line as 17th.
Grade: 5

Alexandros Margaritis: like many others, Margaritis and his team opted for the wrong strategy, in the qualifying gamble. When the track dried and the crucial lap times were set, the Greek lacked of laps for another stint and had to make do with 16th place. In the 17th lap of the race, Margaritis had to come in for a drive-thru penalty for pit-lane speeding. At the end of the day, he finished 18th.
Grade: 5

Martin Tomczyk: apart from pole-sitter Tom Kristensen, Martin Tomczyk had the best qualifying strategy. In the very last minute, the German leaped to front row of the grid by securing second position. Right at the start, Tomczyk was able to defend his second place, but was passed by Jamie Green (fourth on the grid). Two laps later, he was also passed by Paffett, and in lap 24, he couldn’t prevent Ekström from also overtaking him. In lap 32, his race was over. Due to a suspension failure, he went off into the gravel and returned to the pits to retire.
Grade: 4

LMika Häkkinen: Quite obviously, Mika Häkkinen will try to forget his fifth DTM weekend as fast as possible. On Saturday, he was just too fast, on his second lap, went off and damaged his underfloor. He could go out for another stint in the closing stages, but there wasn’t enough time and he had to make do with 20th position. In the race, the DTM rookie was hit by another dose of bad luck: at first, he experienced a problem during his first pit stop and two laps later, he spectacularly spun off track and came close to somersaulting. That was that.
Grade: 5

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