Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport Toto Wolff says DTM officials should 'act in the best interests of racing' after Robert Wickens was denied a shot at victory at the Red Bull Ring due to a controversial black flag.
Wickens, who had led from pole position for 21 laps, was inadvertently involved in a controversial furore when the release from his pit-stop was deemed to be unsafe
However, Mercedes was convinced the penalty was instead supposed to be handed down to Pascal Wehrlein just behind after he was released into the path of Marco Wittmann, the pair making contact unlike Wickens and Glock.
However, while Wehrlein – who retired soon after - escaped a penalty, Wickens would instead receive one, with Mercedes bosses proceeding to argue a case with officials even if the drive-through continued to stand. In the meantime, Wickens completed the allotted three laps required to serve the drive-through and was swiftly black flagged just as he had snatched the lead from Augusto Farfus.
It was a ruling Wolff was upset with, claiming there is a lack of consistency from officials, whilst he feels the incident damages the show for DTM fans.
“From our perspective, it was very clearly not an unsafe release. The decision is incomprehensible for me, especially since it is not consistent with other decisions that were made. However, we must accept the penalty, as those are the rules.
“In future, I think that in cases of doubt we should act in the best interests of racing. We owe that to all the fans of the DTM, of BMW, Audi and Mercedes. Many thanks to the team and to Robert for the way they have performed in the last few weeks. We'll be back.”