DTM veteran Bernd Schneider has paid tribute to his team following his victory at the Nurburgring on Sunday, his first triumph of the year.
The weather in the Eifel turned the seventh round in the series into some of a lottery and in the end it was the oldest driver in the field that came through and did the business, winning by 5.764 seconds.
The 44-year-old made the most of all his years of experience and one week after his 44th birthday clinched his 43rd victory in the DTM/ITC.
"I am really happy. One week after my anniversary this is my best birthday present. I thank my team for their great efforts and for the right tyre choice. This was the key to success," he noted. "I had a perfect car and a perfect team throughout the weekend – and the driver wasn't bad, too."
Asked about the event in more detail, the DTM record champion conceded though that it was actually his engineer who decided to start him on slick tyres.
"It was a great race with a good ending for me. But thanks must go to my engineer who decided to let me start with slicks - although I actually wanted to have rain tyres on," he added. "My car was really great and two perfect pit stops of my mechanics allowed me to make up at least two places. Thanks guys, tonight, one round is on me!"
Mercedes boss Norbert Haug meanwhile was over-the-moon, especially after the 'problems' in qualifying and the ruling of the officials which was less than great for 'his' men [see separate stories].
On Sunday though, Haug had a lot to be happy about and in addition to Bernd Schneider's victory, Mercedes also finished second, third, fourth, seventh and eighth, leaving rivals Audi with just two cars in the points.
"A great race - good for the sport and the DTM. Thanks to the teams HWA, Mücke and Persson for the right tyre choice, a great strategy and good pit stops. Today we ended up in the points with six C-Class cars," Haug reflected.
"Bernd was perfect, one week after his 44th anniversary and after 43 laps he achieved his 43rd DTM victory. Gary posted outstanding lap times with the 2007 C-Class, and also our 'DTM apprentice' Ralf showed an awesome race, which was rewarded with his first DTM point.
"We now won four out of seven races and the championship remains open with four races to go. Prior to the next round in Brands Hatch on 31st August, we want to and have to further improve – however, tonight we will celebrate this special quadruple win."