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Kristensen out for Brands, Winkelhock remains
1 January 1901
Tom Kristensen's slim DTM title hopes are all but over after being forced to skip the fourth round of the championship at Brands Hatch, the Dane once again being replaced by Markus Winkelhock.
Kristensen has missed the last two rounds of the series after sustaining injuries in a massive smash at the Hockenheim season opener, with Frank Biela replacing him at Oschersleben and Winkelhock deputising at Lausitz.
It will be a disappointing miss for Kristensen, who is otherwise expected to return to the racing seat for the Le Mans 24 Hours where he will be bidding for a historic eighth triumph, not least because he claimed a pole position on the championship's first visit to the Kent circuit last year and led much of the way until a suspension failure forced him into retirement.
Furthermore, with four rounds gone and only six remaining, Kristensen's hopes of snatching the DTM title in his third season for Audi have all but ended.
Nonetheless, Winkelhock will assume his spot in the 2007-spec Abt Sportsline A4 once again, the German hoping to put in a stronger performance than he managed at the EuroSpeedway when he languished towards the back of the field before crashing out in a collision with Mathias Lauda.
"Despite not knowing Brands Hatch, I'll go there with a lot of expectations. At EuroSpeedway, things did not run perfectly for me. I was able to improve during the free practice sessions reducing more and more the gap to my team-mates.
“However, I was not able to continue this trend in qualifying and the race. I want to do this at Brands Hatch and get a good result for Audi."
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