Martin Tomczyk can now celebrate his maiden championship success as he became the first driver in DTM history to win the title in old spec machinery with his third place result at Valencia on Sunday.
His success is also a major achievement for his team, Audi Sport Team Phoenix, who are not actually classed as a factory effort but a customer.
Tomczyk clearly couldn't believe what he achieved on Sunday and he dedicated the championship to his team.
“This is just unbelievable. At the beginning of the season, nobody had me on the radar, and now, I am champion,” he said.
“This title is for you.”
Consistency has been the name of the game for the Audi man this year, as he has finished seven of the nine races on the rostrum, three victories within that statistic. Even in the two races where he failed to make the podium he finished a solid fifth on both occasions.
In contrast, chief championship rival, Bruno Spengler has not been so consistent. Indeed his lacklustre seventh at Brands Hatch and his retirement in Oschersleben - thanks to a broken damper - have all contributed to his downfall, as he acknowledged.
“We didn't lose the title today, we already lost too many points in the previous races. We have been fighting hard, but we simply couldn't do more today,” lamented the Canadian.
Mercedes Motorsport boss Norbert Haug meanwhile was magnanimous in defeat paying tribute to Tomczyk and Audi, Mercedes and also the DTM championship, which has had a pretty turbulent couple of years.
“First of all, congratulations to Martin and the Audi team,” Haug said. “At the end of the day, I am a sportsman, one should be able to lose as well. Today, I am one hundred percent behind my team. They have all been working very hard. I want to take the opportunity to say thank you to all those who have contributed to make the DTM survive in the past years: Audi, Mercedes-Benz, the DMSB and the ITR.”
Haug also agreed with his driver Spengler regarding on where the championship was and lost: “Unfortunately, we have lost 20 points to Martin in the last races,” he added.
Dr. Martin Mühlmeier, head of technology Audi Sport naturally commended Tomczyk and signified the significance of his championship glory to Audi.
“This is a great day for Audi, because we can celebrate with Martin and, of course, also with Mattias [Ekstrom], Filipe [Albuquerque] and all the other drivers. Martin has been very focussed throughout the season and eventually has won the title by his own means. I really congratulate him.”
Tomczyk can now head to the Hockenheim finale pressure free in the knowledge the title is secure.
by Simon Evans