Two BMW M3 DTMs on the front row: Farfus takes pole position at Nürburgring.

by Bernie McGroarty on August 17, 2013, 9:26 pm
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Nürburgring (DE), 17th August 2013. Two BMW M3 DTMs will start from the front row of the grid for the second time in the 2013 DTM season. In qualifying ahead of the seventh round at the Nürburgring (DE), Augusto Farfus (BR) secured pole position in his Castrol EDGE BMW M3 DTM with a time of 1:23.296 minutes. This was the BMW Team RBM driver’s first pole of the year and third of his DTM career. Marco Wittmann (DE) of BMW Team MTEK will start from second on the grid for the second time in his rookie season. The young German previously achieved this feat at the wheel of the Ice-Watch BMW M3 DTM in Spielberg (AT). Farfus’s pole position is also BMW Motorsport’s second of the season and 37th in the DTM.

BMW Team Schnitzer driver Bruno Spengler (DE) had to make do with tenth place. The reigning champion, in the BMW Bank M3 DTM, failed to make it through to the fourth qualifying session. Spengler will start Sunday’s race just in front of championship leader Mike Rockenfeller (DE, Audi).

Timo Glock (DE, POSTBANK BMW M3 DTM) and Joey Hand (US, BMW M3 DTM) ended Q2 in 13th and 16th respectively. Dirk Werner (DE, SAMSUNG BMW M3 DTM), Martin Tomczyk (DE, BMW M Performance Parts M3 DTM) and Andy Priaulx (GB, Crowne Plaza Hotels BMW M3 DTM) will start from 19th, 20th and 22nd on the grid.

The race begins at 13:30 on Sunday, with 49 laps of the Nürburgring awaiting the eight BMW DTM drivers.

Jens Marquardt (BMW Motorsport Director):
“Congratulations to Augusto Farfus and Marco Wittmann on their fantastic qualifying and first and second places. This is the second time we have had two BMW M3 DTMs starting next to each other on the front of the grid. We are very happy with this result, particularly here at the Nürburgring. We also have another BMW driver in the top ten, in the form of Bruno Spengler. He lost about half an hour of free practice due to a technical problem, and in the end that cost him. Generally speaking, it was another incredibly close qualifying. Some of our drivers went out early on. We will take a close look at what happened there. All in all I am very happy with today. We are looking forward to an exciting race tomorrow.”

Bart Mampaey (Team Principal BMW Team RBM):
“This is a magnificent result for BMW and our team. The engineers, mechanics and, above all, Augusto Farfus at the wheel did a sensational job. We started to believe this kind of top result might be possible after Augusto’s impressive lap in Q3. We then got the tyre pressures absolutely spot on in the all-important session – and Augusto got the very best out of the car – and pole position. He was not 100 per cent happy with his car, but Augusto still managed to excel in qualifying. That is a very special ability. Joey Hand’s 16th was not what he deserved today, as he actually also showed good pace. However, the DTM is an incredibly close affair. That is why we are so happy about the pole position.”

Augusto Farfus (car number 7, BMW Team RBM, 1st):
“This is an absolute dream result. I am actually a bit surprised to start from pole, as this morning’s free practice was tough. The car was not so good at first. Therefore, we made a few changes with qualifying in mind. Fortunately we made the right decisions. That is what makes the DTM so exciting: no matter how hard you work as a team, you never quite know where you are going to land in qualifying. I now have a very good chance for tomorrow. However, I am certain the race will still have a few surprises in store.”

Marco Wittmann (car number 21, BMW Team MTEK, 2nd):
“I am obviously overjoyed with second place. It is fantastic to be back on the front row of the grid after three races that did not exactly go to plan. My pace was very good all the way through qualifying. I was not too far behind Augusto Farfus in the end. The fact that BMW will start from first and second on the grid is a fantastic team result. We must now take full advantage of our promising starting positions in tomorrow’s race.”

Bruno Spengler (car number 1, BMW Team Schnitzer, 10th):
“We were simply not quick enough today. We struggled with technical problems in practice, and the time we lost cost us dearly when it came to working on the set-up. Because of this, we unfortunately had to settle for tenth on the grid. However, I will go on the attack tomorrow and am certain I can fight my way through the field in the race.”

Timo Glock (car number 22, BMW Team MTEK, 13th):
“We had a few problems with the balance of our car in free practice. We did significantly improve the set-up for qualifying, but the short time available was unfortunately not quite enough to get the car perfect. That is why we were missing those all-important tenths of a second.”

Joey Hand (car number 8, BMW Team RMG, 16th):
“In Q1 I felt we had made a step in the right direction from free practice. However, what happens to us in Q2 when the track gets rubber and gets hot is we struggle and the car gets looser and looser. It is tough to manage and tough to put a good lap together. If it stays dry we should have a good race and be able to move forward, as we did in Moscow. If it rains, however, no one knows what will happen.”

Dirk Werner (car number 2, BMW Team Schnitzer, 19th):
“That is a huge disappointment. You obviously do your very best to avoid going out in Q1. I am always really motivated ahead of every race weekend, so it is very disillusioning to go out so early.”

Martin Tomczyk (car number 15, BMW Team RMG, 20th):
“My team and I always try to get the very best out of the car every weekend. Unfortunately we are not managing that at the moment. It is difficult to say exactly why that is. To have to down tools so early in proceedings at our team’s home race is obviously disappointing. However, we will look ahead. Maybe fortune will finally favour us in tomorrow’s race. It is tough to constantly have to pick yourself up, but we are doing our best.”

Andy Priaulx (car number 16, BMW Team RMG, 22nd):
“This qualifying has left me totally frustrated. However hard we try, and I can assure you we worked very hard today between free practice and qualifying, we just don't seem to be able to get the performance out of the car. As usual, I shall give it my all on Sunday. With rain predicted, you never know what will happen tomorrow.”


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