Photo finish in the DTM: Rast pips Müller by a whisker

Photo finish in the DTM: Rast pips Müller by a whisker

16.08.2020: • It never has been closer: just 0.089 seconds decide • 300th DTM podium finish for BMW: Marco Wittmann works his way to third • To be continued: again at the Lausitzring next weekend already A heart-stopping finale in the DTM: in less than the b

•    It never has been closer: just 0.089 seconds decide
•    300th DTM podium finish for BMW: Marco Wittmann works his way to third
•    To be continued: again at the Lausitzring next weekend already

A heart-stopping finale in the DTM: in less than the blink of an eye and with the tiny margin of only 0.089 seconds, Audi driver René Rast put himself back in contention in the battle for the DTM title. In a photo finish at the Lausitzring, the two-time champion successfully withstood the final attack from last year’s runner-up Nico Müller (Audi) until the finish line.

Rast and Müller repeated the closest race finish in DTM history: back in 1996, DTM legend Klaus Ludwig beat his fellow Opel driver Uwe Alzen at the Norisring, also by 0.089 seconds. Third place, the final podium spot, was equally hard-fought. Double champion Marco Wittmann (BMW) demoted Audi driver Robin Frijns (NED) to fourth place in an energetic finale. With this result, the German confirmed the upward trend for the brand from Munich and secured BMW’s 300th podium finish in the DTM’s long history.

The second-best BMW driver was ex-Formula 1 driver Timo Glock, who was sixth across the finish line behind Mike Rockenfeller (Audi). After sixth place in the race on Saturday, Ferdinand Habsburg (AUT) again scored points by finishing tenth with his privately-run Audi.

Rast back into second place of the standings, but Müller well ahead at 100 points

One week from now, the DTM will be back in action at the Lausitzring again in the second part of its first-ever double header, but then at the 4.5 kilometres long Grand Prix track. Nico Müller having scored his third win on Saturday ahead of Sheldon van der Linde (BMW) and Robin Frijns (Audi), the Swiss holds a commanding lead in the drivers’ standings at 100 points after four races.

René Rast, meanwhile, has made his way back up into second place with 61 points. Robin Frijns is third with 58 points. Marco Wittmann (28) is the best-placed BMW driver in sixth.

DTM drivers deliver an entertaining race

From lights to flag, the DTM staged a thrilling and entertaining race with spectacular manoeuvres throughout the field. Robin Frijns, who started from pole position for the third time in four races, had to defend his position from René Rast in such a way that the German briefly had to drive through the grass. While Nico Müller initially lost ground from second on the grid, Marco Wittmann was one of the drivers to make progress in the turbulent opening part of the race as he moved up from seventh to third. Frijns’s lead came to an end on lap three as Rast went past with a spirited move.

After that, the German and the Dutchman swapped positions several times. The field of the up to 640hp strong touring cars was very closely together and the wheel-to-wheel battles for every position in the midfield were by no means less intense, quite some slight bodywork contact included.

Full-size in the rear-view mirror: Müller with a strong recovery

While Rast, Frijns and Wittmann made their mandatory pit stops to have a fresh set of tyres mounted very early, Müller waited considerably longer to have better tyres for the final sprint. Only seventh after his stop, the Swiss, who is to become a father for the first time within the next days, started his recovery that saw him move up all the way to second place. The green-and-white Audi became bigger and bigger in the rear-view mirror of his fellow Audi driver Rast.

And the German had miscalculated, expecting the chequered flag one lap of the 3.5 kilometres long sprint circuit earlier. With all his experience, Rast successfully defended his position from Müller until the final metres, the Swiss seemingly glued to the rear of Rast’s car, but eventually unable to mount a successful challenge.

» Quotes – race 2, Lausitzring Sprint

"A good weekend. Today’s race was really thrilling. I am particularly happy with the fact that BMW has managed to finish on the podium again and was within striking distance. Nevertheless, Audi was still very strong. The battle Rast against Müller was super. With a gap of 0.089 seconds at the line, it was a photo finish.

It would have been nice to have BMW as the third car for that photo finish as well, but it was thrilling, exactly the way the fans want to see it. That is what the DTM is about. We are already looking forward to next weekend when we are racing at Lausitz again."

Gerhard Berger, Chairman ITR e. V.

"The race was very entertaining in the cockpit and surely for the viewers as well. From third place on the grid, I made a good start, but Robin Frijns slightly blocked me and I briefly had to drive through the grass in avoidance. We made our pit stop early, but once I was past Robin again, I was able to manage my tyres really well.

Of course, I saw Nico Müller coming closer and closer and I was surprised indeed that the race lasted one lap longer than I had expected. It really was very close, but it was enough. After we had changed the set-up of the car completely, I felt considerably more at ease in the car than in the race on Saturday."

René Rast, Audi, winner

"At the start, I had little grip and lost some ground. Then, I saw the rallycross action in front of me and I was suddenly in front again, but I had understeer on the outside line and I dropped back to fourth. It was quite a lot of work today because I was well down the order after the tyre stop. I stayed out of all the action and managed my tyres well. On Saturday, the race seemed really long to me, but today, unfortunately, it was one lap too short. Now, I am looking forward to my family and the arrival of a new family member."

Nico Müller, Audi, 2nd place

"Being on the podium again is good. The initial situation from seventh on the grid was difficult, but I had a good start that brought me up into third place. On the penultimate lap, I pulled off a spectacular overtaking manoeuvre. Still, the gap to Audi is too big because it is my goal to get back all the way to the front again."

Marco Wittmann, 3rd place

» Results – race 2, Lausitzring Sprint

01. René Rast (GER), Audi RS 5 DTM, 43 laps in 57m 09.747s
02. Nico Müller (SUI), Audi RS 5 DTM, + 0.089s
03. Marco Wittmann (GER), BMW M4 DTM, + 9.567s
04. Robin Frijns (NED), Audi RS 5 DTM, + 12.532s
05. Mike Rockenfeller (GER), Audi RS 5 DTM, + 13.731s
06. Timo Glock (GER), BMW M4 DTM, + 20.395s
07. Philipp Eng (AUT), BMW M4 DTM, + 21.193s
08. Loïc Duval (FRA), Audi RS 5 DTM, + 25.326s
09. Jonathan Aberdein (RSA), BMW M4 DTM, + 26.597s
10. Ferdinand Habsburg (AUT), Audi RS 5 DTM, + 37.074s

Fastest lap: Robin Frijns (NED), Audi RS 5 DTM, 1m 16.992s
Pole position: Robin Frijns (NED), Audi RS 5 DTM, 1m 15.787s
Weather conditions: 29°C, sunshine
Circuit conditions: 47°C, dry surface

» Wow fact – race 2, Lausitzring Sprint


...minutes of digital information is what the DTM organisation as well as the manufacturers Audi and BMW are offering in terms of online press conferences around the races. In the times of the Covid-19 pandemic, during which only few (like for the Spa-Francorchamps season opener) or no media representatives at all (like at Lausitzring) can be accommodated on site, digital press conferences are in great demand.

Be it the press conference a few days prior to the race weekend, the sessions with the three best-placed drivers after every race, with the heads of motorsport, with the drivers of the various teams or the digital round table conversations: with a single click, journalists can join in from all over the world. And just another click is enough to raise the digital hand and to ask individual questions.

» And then, there was …

    … the new streaming platform DTM GRID. The various onboard perspectives and the Race Control View in particular are very popular among the DTM fans. Fans have the free choice, they are their own director with DTM GRID. Every session of the DTM as well as the support categories, interviews and information from the paddock... with DTM GRID, the fans get really close to the action. In the breaks between the races, a DJ set is providing entertainment. DTM GRID and an overview of all broadcasting partners can be found at

ITR GmbH-photo DTM


16.08.2020 / MaP

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