Katherine Legge left the opening round of the 2009 DTM campaign with mixed feelings, having achieved her best result in the series but believing that more could have been possible.
Having posted an encouraging top ten time in Saturday morning's free practice session, the Briton had high hopes for qualifying, but admitted to an error that cost her the chance to take her 2008-spec Audi A4 DTM through to the third phase of the series' new-look knock-out qualifying procedure. Despite that, however, she secured 13th on the grid, her best qualifying result so far, after only being narrowly shaded by the 2009 Mercedes of Gary Paffett and Ralf Schumacher.
"My first qualifying section was good, and my lap time really decent," Legge reported, "In the second qualifying, however, things didn't go that well because I made a mistake in the second turn on my first set of tyres. When I stopped, I first had to let Martin [Tomczyk] pass but, in the end, I managed to clinch a pretty good grid position."
With contact up and down the field, race day could have yielded more for the second year driver, but the rough-and-tumble nature of the season-opener eventually embroiled the Team Abt Lady Power car. A collision with the already damaged car of ex-F1 race winner Schumacher resulted in a drive-thru' penalty being imposed on Legge, dropping her down the order.
Undeterred, the Briton pressed on and subsequently recovered some of the lost ground, passing Mercedes rival Susie Stoddart before eventually finishing the race in twelfth place.
"Maybe we did a pretty good job of entertaining the audience but, for us, the race, unfortunately, was horrible," she claimed later, "I had a bad start, and it seemed like everybody was out to get everyone else. So many cars touched or crashed into each other, and my car was damaged by debris.
"I also had some body contact with Ralf Schumacher and Susie Stoddart and, in the end, my car turned to the right all on its own! This wasn't exactly a fantastic result so we'll look ahead to the race at the Eurospeedway."