Former Formula One driver Robert Kubica scored his maiden career podium in the DTM at Zolder, the former Grand Prix circuit in Belgium. The Pole, driving for ORLEN Team ABT BMW started the race from tenth place and came home in third place.
Speaking following the action he said:
“I am very happy, no doubt about it. We didn’t expect this at all, but you have to take the opportunities as they come. That was the case today. Our strategy was perfect. Just in the pit stop, not everything worked perfectly, but nobody noted it: the lollypop didn’t go up, so at a certain point, I just drove off. Otherwise, I would still be standing there. Then, I had Nico Müller in front of me and was slightly faster at that stage, but at the end, it was more important to manage the tyres and bring third place home. This is a big moment for us, for the entire team. I am a DTM rookie, the team is new as well and the season was difficult so far. I am really overjoyed.
Rene Rast took his fourth win at Zolder and speaking following the race, the Audi driver who now leads the championship by 19 points heading into the season finale at the Hockenheimdring next month commented saying:
It is unbelievable: I have won all four races at Zolder, almost scored the maximum number of points. That is totally unexpected. My start was good, but then I ran a bit wide in the first corner. The safety car was out twice, that mixed up things a bit each time. Keeping cool wasn’t easy, especially at the restarts. Ferdinand Habsburg and Nico Müller came in early for their tyre changes. One lap later, we tried an over-cut that worked out. I didn’t know who was second and I tried to look into the rearview mirror in vain to find out how much I had to save my tyres. I hoped that the tyres would last and that was the case. It seems like I can deal slightly better with cooler temperatures, so I hope we won’t have 30 degrees for the finale at Hockenheim.
Nico Müller who came home second commented saying:
The ten days here at Zolder were quite tough for me. Today, I have to be very happy with second place, that was the maximum possible. At the start, everything worked. Only after the pit stop, many cars rejoined the track right in front of me, we hadn’t expected that. I was livid in the cockpit. At this stage, I wore out my tyres more than I wanted. Today, I did everything I could. Our pace wasn’t good enough to follow René Rast. Now, there will be a great showdown at Hockenheim.
Gerhard Berger, Chairman of ITR e.V. commented saying:
“First of all, I feel sorry for Robin Frijns that he has largely lost his chances in the battle for the title, for which he was absolutely innocent. Next year, he is an undisputed title candidate in my book. René Rast has again proven his consistency and his class. He may now have a slight margin, but there are still 56 points at stake. Moreover, the weather can be playing a role at Hockenheim in November as well, so that Frijns still has outside chances, too. Pole position for Ferdinand Habsburg was impressive. He is highly talented and has a very good speed. Great that a privateer team like WRT can take on the works teams. The same can be said for BMW customer team ART that scored its maiden podium finish with Robert Kubica. With that result, Kubica has now finally arrived in the DTM as well. The duel between the two Audi teams Abt and Rosberg is thrilling, too, although, from my perspective, Jamie Green overdid it a bit with his support for René Rast. I am convinced that one should let drivers who are in contention for the title battle it out freely. Anyway, I am looking forward to a thrilling finale at Hockenheim.