Maiden DTM victory for René Rast

Track action (Photo by DTM)Boundless joy for René Rast: in the sixth DTM race of the season at the Hungaroring, the Audi driver secured his maiden victory in the popular touring car series.

“Mega! This is incredible, I can’t believe it,” Rast shouted on the team radio after crossing the finish line. 30-year-old Rast won the race in Hungary after 35 laps from his fellow Audi driver Mattias Ekström, who had led the race for a long time. Third place in the race on Sunday went to Maxime Martin with his BMW M4 DTM, who had started the race from the back of the grid. Classified sixth, Paul Di Resta was the best-placed Mercedes driver in today’s race.

Rast only started his decisive manoeuvre with four laps remaining as he worked his way past Ekström for the lead in a cool manner. Previously, the Audi driver had already secured his second pole position in qualifying for the race on Sunday. In total, it took Rast only nine races to score his maiden DTM race win. “I have been working to achieve this forever,” an overjoyed Rast was delighted. “Mattias had a different strategy, but he was fair in defending his position. It is too early to think about the title yet, but the points’ lead is quite something special indeed. I wouldn’t even have dared to dream about this prior to the season.”

Ekström, who had to admit defeat with victory up for grabs, accepted his second place in a sporting manner. “With my early stop, I had a huge chance to win. However, I had to battle with blunt weapons towards the end. René waited for his chance and then simply went past. This is anything but perfect, but the result is okay.”

Having retired early from the race on Saturday and also being dropped three places on the grid due to a collision, Belgian driver Martin showed a spirited recovery. Qualifying for the race on Sunday wasn’t perfect either, so that he ended up at the back of the grid. The Belgian remained unaffected and already came into the pits for his tyre change on the opening lap. “That was a great comeback,” he said after the race. “I was flat-out from the very beginning, but I didn’t expect to end up on the podium. Eventually, it was a good response to my result from yesterday.”

In the DTM drivers’ standings, race winner Rast is taking the lead with 70 points after six of this season’s 18 races. Lucas Auer, who didn’t score point in Hungary, is second, one point down. With Jamie Green (65 points) and Mattias Ekström (62 points), two further Audi drivers are in third and fourth place.

Nuremberg is the next stop on the DTM calendar: from 30 June till 2 July, 2017, the unique street circuit will serve as the venue for the seventh and eighth race of the season.

 

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