The DTM subject convened on the German venue final week for a remaining three-day take a look at previous to the beginning of the brand new marketing campaign in Monza in June and very like the earlier take a look at at Hockenheim, Mercedes seemed to be a category other than the remainder of the sphere.
Haupt Racing driver Maximilian Gotz set the tempo on every of the three days, ending the take a look at quickest of all with a time of 1m42.744s. The 2 Pink Bull-backed Ferraris completed second and third general within the fingers of Liam Lawson and Alex Albon, with Mercedes-AMG GT3s occupying the subsequent 4 spots within the mixed order.
Kelvin van der Linde was the most effective driver among the many Audi contingent in eighth, six tenths down on Gotz, whereas the highest BMW of Marco Wittmann was practically two seconds off the tempo in 17th, solely forward of fellow M6 runner Timo Glock. BMW’s poor exhibiting was solely partially all the way down to the Walkenhorst and Rowe Racing groups lacking the ultimate day of testing as even on Wednesday the hole to the entrance runners was about one second.
The DTM employed a take a look at BoP on the Lausitzring developed by collection companion AVL Racing. The objective wasn’t to have the automobiles completely balanced already and the BoP might be honed additional for the primary spherical of the season. Nonetheless, the instances set by among the automobiles weren’t precisely in step with what was anticipated of them below the present BoP.
Kelvin van der Linde, Abt Sportsline Audi R8 LMS GT3
Photograph by: Alexander Trienitz
The Audi R8 LMS, as an illustration, was given a number of efficiency breaks in comparison with the GT Masters collection, which makes use of an SRO-determined BoP. Ultimately yr’s Lausitzring spherical, Audi was carrying a minimal weight of 1,320kg and therefore was solely 10kg lighter than Mercedes’ GT3 automobile.
On the DTM take a look at, the minimal weight requirement was lowered to 1,275kg, giving it a 45kg benefit over Mercedes.
Additionally, Audi was allowed to run its engine at full energy on the Lausitzring take a look at, whereas the SRO has stipulated two 40mm restrictors within the GT Masters collection. For comparability, Mercedes needed to run with two 38mm restrictors within the DTM, which was greater than what it was required to run in GT Masters.
Therefore, it was shocking to see Audi off the tempo at Lausitzring when it’s recognized to be aggressive in GT Masters and different SRO-sanctioned championships.
So, was the Ingolstadt-based model attempting to hide its true tempo to affect the BoP for Monza?
“You must drive at full pace,” Workforce Rosberg Audi boss Kimmo Liimatainen stated, denying these solutions. “The AVL persons are not silly and have entry to the information. They will see when somebody is dishonest.”
Nonetheless, whereas that’s true, in accordance with Autosport’s sister title Motorsport-Complete, there are nonetheless loopholes to present a mistaken impression to BoP makers – even with all of the sensors positioned on the automobiles.
For instance, sure parts such because the brake blocks could be made to a distinct specification to disguise the true efficiency of the automobiles in testing. Drivers, too, can keep away from taking kerbs – though this might be detected utilizing onboard cameras.
The Audi R8 LMS was noticeably faster on straights, clocking a prime pace of 252.25km/h throughout a particular BoP run on Wednesday in comparison with 249.23km/h recorded by Ferrari 488, 248.17km/hr by BMW M6 and solely 246.46km/h by Mercedes.
Nonetheless, it struggled within the tough center sector which requires excessive downforce. Whereas Lawson recorded a finest time of 38.265s by means of that passage in his Pink Bull-liveried Ferrari, van der Linde couldn’t go any faster than 38.970s on any of his 4 flying laps through the BoP run.
It should be famous that DTM rookie and Workforce Rosberg Audi driver Dev Gore, who had usually proved to be at the least a second slower than the extra skilled van der Linde throughout a full lap in testing, was solely a thousandth of a second slower than the South African in sector 2 throughout the identical BoP run.
Alex Albon, AF Corse Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo
Photograph by: Alexander Trienitz
This implies that van der Linde’s lap of 1m43.737s was not consultant, much more so when you think about he managed a time of 38.622s in sector 2 exterior the BoP run. Therefore, it’s affordable to anticipate a lap time of 1m43.025s might have been potential, which might have put him third within the BoP run behind Gotz and Albon’s Ferrari.
“The folks from AVL do not simply take a look at the instances of the BoP Run,” stated Abt Audi group boss Thomas Biermaier. “If Kelvin was two tenths sooner within the center sector two hours earlier, then they’ll take this sector time. After which the distinction just isn’t six, however two or three tenths.”
Two-time DTM champion Wittmann ended the BoP run zero.997s off the tempo within the Walkenhorst BMW. His finest time from the take a look at was 1.850s slower than Gotz, which is seen to be too huge within the view of steadiness of efficiency.
This wasn’t all the way down to any modifications within the turbo settings made on behalf of AVL, as each Ferrari and BMW have been working the identical enhance stress throughout all the take a look at.
“The steadiness of efficiency just isn’t precisely useful for the M6 GT3, however the automobile ought to nonetheless have extra potential,” stated an insider about BMW’s lack of tempo.
General Lausitzring take a look at outcomes (together with BoP runs):
1. Maximilian Gotz (HRT-Mercedes) 1: 42.744 (Thu) (251 laps)
2. Liam Lawson (AF-Corse-Ferrari) 1: 42.840 (Thu) (164)
three. Alex Albon (AF-Corse-Ferrari) 1: 42.904 (Thu) (222)
four. Philip Ellis (Winward-Mercedes) 1: 43.108 (Thu) (169)
5. Arjun Maini (GetSpeed-Mercedes) 1: 43.118 (Thu) (230)
6. Lucas Auer (Winward-Mercedes) 1: 43.180 (Thu) (183)
7. Vincent Abril (HRT-Mercedes) 1: 43.353 (Thu) (218)
eight. Kelvin van der Linde (Abt-Audi) 1: 43.373 (Thu) (113)
ninth Daniel Juncadella (GruppeM-Mercedes) 1: 43.428 (Thu) (182)
10. Nico Müller (Rosberg-Audi) 1: 43.815 (Wed) (156 )
11. Mike Rockenfeller (Abt-Audi) 1: 43.952 (Wed) (134)
12. Gary Paffett (Mücke-Mercedes) 1: 44.zero22 (Wed) (162)
13. Dev Gore (Rosberg-Audi) 1: 44.346 (Thu) (246)
14. Sophia Floresch (Abt-Audi) 1: 44.420 (Thu ) (228)
15. Nick Cassidy (AF-Corse-Ferrari) 1: 44.523 (Tue) (82)
16. Marco Wittmann (Walkenhorst-BMW) 1: 44.594 (Wed) (153)
17. Timo Glock (Rowe-BMW ) 1: 44.946 (Wed) (146)