Preview Before the Race at the Eurospeedway

By: Dwyane Thomas

The excitement is swelling up for the coming Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters or the German Touring Car Masters. And to get an idea on what to expect at the race here is a preview before the race at the EuroSpeedway.

The Lausitzring race track has been improved. The front straight has been extended by 36 meters to 672 meters and then followed by a sharp left-hander. The main objective for this is to create more opportunities for outbraking. At this particular part of the track the cars are slowed down from 245 kph to a little over 85 kph. Last year the wide first corner which provides several racing lines allowed speed of 130 kph.

There are six podium positions which are to be occupied by six different drivers for the 2007 season's first two races. The drivers are the following: Mattias Ekstrom, Martin Tomczyk and Rockenfeller (Audi); Daniel la Rosa, Gary Paffett, and Paul di Resta (for Mercedes-Benz brand of the quality ).

At last year's race Bernd Schneider has been able to repeat his victory in the season opener in the second race. Tom Kristensen from Audi also came home second twice. The only position that changes at last year's race is the third place wherein Mika Hakkinen driver of an AMG Mercedes C-Class and third at the Lausitzring trailed behind Heinz-Harald Frentzen of Audi who was third in Hockenheim.

Team Persson Motorsport is the only team that obtain high points with three cars each in both of the 2007 season's first two races in which they entered the C-Class cars of Gary Paffett, paul di Resta, and Alexandros Margaritis. In Oschersleben, the team of Ingmar Persson was not only been able to achieve their first DTM win but was able to make it 1-2 victory. The team was has also scored 19 points more than the other teams in one race.

For the new Mercedes-Benz C-Class, podium positions have been made possible in both races. In Hockenheim, Bruno Spengler (DaimlerChrysler Bank AMG Mercedes) was able to finish third after pole position and 11 lead laps but unfortunately dropped to 14th by a time penalty after the race.

In Oschersleben, Mika Hakkinen (AMG Mercedes) has started from pole position, ran third until the second to last lap but still fall to 17th place following an extra pitstop caused by a damaged tire resulting from a race accident. Jamie Green was able to record the fastest lap of the race but even with such a record he still lost the chance for a podium finish by a drive-through penalty.

Here are the quotes before the race at the EuroSpeedway

Gary Paffett (Laureus AMG Mercedes C-Class 2006): After winning the race in Oschersleben my car will even be heavier and it will be more difficult to repeat this success. However, the atmosphere within our team is great and everybody is confident that we will achieve another good result at the Lausitzring where I won two years ago."

Paul di Resta (JAWA4U.de AMG Mercedes C-Class 2005): "We have continuously improved throughout the first two races and we focus to maintain this level. Then we should be among the front runners again."

Bernd Schneider (Genuine Parts AMG Mercedes C-Class 2007): "I have won at the Lausitzring three times and I like this track. It would be great if I could achieve the first race win for the new C-Class here."

Alexandros Margaritis (stern AMG Mercedes C-Class 2006): "Six points out of the first two races were a reasonable start into the season. I want to improve further."

Jamie Green (Salzgitter AMG Mercedes C-Class 2007): "At the Lausitzring I achieved two poles so far, so the track suits me. This time I want to be at the front also in the race."

Mathias Lauda (Trilux AMG Mercedes C-Class 2006): "I had expected more than two 13th places for the first two races. I can do better than that as I want to show at the Lausitzring."

Daniel la Rosa (TrekStor AMG Mercedes C-Class 2006): "The Lausitzring event is the home race for our team MÃ?cke Motorsport. I look forward to the great atmosphere with the packed grandstand and I want to show that my 14th place at Oschersleben was only a one-off."

Susie Stoddart (TV Spielfilm AMG Mercedes C-Class 2005): "After a disappointing weekend in Oschersleben, I hope to get back on the pace and fight for points in the race at Lausitzring."

Mika Hakkinen (AMG Mercedes C-Class 2007): "At the Lausitzring, we don't know the modified first corner yet. Therefore, Friday's tests will be even more important. I finished third twice at this circuit and two years after my first DTM victory I finally want to end on the top spot this time. A pole like in Oschersleben would be the best."

Bruno Spengler (DaimlerChrysler Bank AMG Mercedes C-Class 2007): "Two promising races but finally no points - this was a difficult start into the season for me. However, the new C-Class has a lot of potential and at the Lausitzring I finally want to win."

Norbert Haug, Vice President Mercedes-Benz Motorsport: "The previous race in Oscherslaben has shown that the DTM is as competitive as never before and consequently, surprising results like the first-class operating Persson team's 1-2 victory with Gary Paffett and Paul di Resta are possible. Mercedes-Benz led more than 76 percent of all the first two races' laps, scored most of the points, and in Oschersleben the new C-Class had the best speed of all competitors, including pole position, fastest race lap and best average lap times over the distance. However, the most important is still missing - a victory. At the Lausitzring we aim for that as well as for a positive team result.

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