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Audi driver Martin Tomczyk celebrates first DTM victory
Audi driver Martin Tomczyk celebrates first DTM victory
audi_driver_martin_tomczyk_celebrates_first_dtm_victory

The 42,000 spectators who watched the first ever Spanish DTM race at Barcelona may well come again next year. They witnessed a spectacular battle between Audi and Mercedes-Benz, from which the Audi A4 DTM once again emerged as winner: After 58 extremely hard fought laps, the German Martin Tomczyk, who started from pole position, celebrated his first DTM victory ever at the wheel of the Red Bull A4 DTM from Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline. Heinz-Harald Frentzen took third place and in doing so claimed his second podium finish since joining Audi. Mattias Ekstrom rounded out the Audi triumph with his fourth position, which he claimed despite being given a controversial ‘drive-through’ penalty.

Although the Audi A4 DTM was the quickest car around the 2.949 kilometre Circuit de Catalunya during both the wet qualifying session and over the entire race distance held on a dry track, Tom Kristensen, currently second in the championship, finished ninth without scoring points. The Dane held third place after the start but was attacked harshly by title rival Bernd Schneider in his Mercedes immediately after the end of a caution period on lap six. Kristensen’s A4 sustained damage to the front end in the collision, which affected the overall performance of his car.

Schneider also cost Mattias Ekstrom a possible win. The Swede overtook the championship leader twice, but had to complete a controversial 'drive-through' penalty after having touched the rear of the Mercedes lightly when overtaking for the second time and Schneider suddenly hit the brakes in the hairpin. Despite the ‘drive-through’ penalty Ekstrom fought back to claim fourth place – and in doing so overtook Bruno Spengler, with two wins this season to his name, in spectacular fashion.

Frank Stippler (Audi Sport Team Rosberg) finally saw the back of his run of bad luck at Barcelona: He followed up his excellent qualifying performance by finishing sixth with the best 2005-spec car. With Tom Kristensen and Christian Abt (Audi Sport Team Phoenix) in ninth and tenth place respectively, a total of six Audi drivers finished in the top ten.

Timo Scheider’s race ended prematurely when he was pushed into Mika Hakkinen by Mercedes team mate Jean Alesi. Nicolas Kiesa, Pierre Kaffer and Vanina Ickx were involved in a spectacular pile-up on the opening lap, in which all three Audi A4 DTM cars were victims.
Audi driver Tom Kristensen still has a small chance of winning the title heading into the final two races in Le Mans (15 October) and Hockenheim (29 October).

RESULTS:

01. Martin Tomczyk (Red Bull Audi A4 DTM), 58 laps in 1h 06m 07.496s
02. Bernd Schneider (Mercedes), + 2.898s
03. Heinz-Harald Frentzen (Veltins Audi A4 DTM), + 3.469s
04. Mattias Ekstrom (Red Bull Audi A4 DTM), + 10.962s
05. Bruno Spengler (Mercedes), + 13.186s
06. Frank Stippler (S line Audi A4 DTM), + 14.329s
07. Daniel la Rosa (Mercedes), + 15.057s
08. Alexandros Margaritis (Mercedes), + 18.812s
09. Tom Kristensen (Siemens Audi A4 DTM), + 19.379s
10. Christian Abt (Playboy Audi A4 DTM), + 20.235s
11. Mika Hakkinen (Mercedes), + 21.640s
12. Stefan Mucke (Mercedes), + 23.629s
13. Mathias Lauda (Mercedes), + 24.463s
14. Jean Alesi (Mercedes), + 39.448s
15. Susie Stoddart (Mercedes), + 45.299s

Not classified:
Timo Scheider (Gebrauchtwagen:plus Audi A4 DTM), - 51 laps (collision).
Jamie Green (Mercedes), - 57 laps.
Nicolas Kiesa (Futurecom Audi A4 DTM), - laps (collision).
Pierre Kaffer (Audi A4 DTM), - laps (collision)
Vanina Ickx (Original Teile Audi A4 DTM), - 58 laps (collision)

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