Paffett on pole, Di Resta following closely in third
The first title has been wrapped up. On Sunday, Mercedes-AMG sealed the manufacturers’ title in second qualifying at the Red Bull Ring. Gary Paffett having stormed to pole position with a time of 1m23.404s and Paul Di Resta having secured third place (1m23.632s), the Stuttgart-based brand is beyond reach for the opposition from Munich and Ingolstadt. Mercedes-AMG now has a total of 829 points, 284 points more than BMW, with a maximum of 276 points still at stake. Audi’s Nico Müller (1m23.432s) will be lining up second on the grid for the race in Austria that will start at 13.30 hrs.
“I was surprised when I was told that we had won the manufacturers’ title after qualifying. Our car has been the best throughout the season. Congratulations to the entire team. My crew has done a great job overnight after my car was damaged in yesterday’s race. I had a great lap. The race will be tough. I am fighting for the title with Paul and we are only seven points apart. That will be a close battle,” Paffett said.
Nico Müller was also very happy. The Swiss is feeling particularly well at Spielberg. In the last three events in Styria, he finished on the podium. For today, Müller is also in a very good position. “I felt very well in the car, the balance was good. Unfortunately, I didn’t quite manage to get the tyres into the window on my best lap. But I don’t want to complain, I am on the front row. Now, I will battle for victory with the Mercedes-AMG drivers,” Müller said. With Edoardo Mortara (1m23.712s) and Pascal Wehrlein (1m23.748s), further Mercedes-AMG drivers followed in fourth and fifth place. The best-placed BMW driver was Joel Eriksson (1m23.773s) in sixth.
Eighth-placed René Rast (1m23.866s) was disappointed by his qualifying performance. Thus, his chances of defending the title are decreasing. “I am in an extremely bad mood,” the Audi driver said. Guest driver Sébastien Ogier ended up last, 1.296 seconds down on Paffett. The race starts at 13.30 hrs. The action from Austria will be streamed live at DTM.com/live and in the DTM apps for iOS and Android.