20 April 2008
Oschersleben 2008: Scheider seals maiden win.
by Chris Hayes
Timo Scheider seized back the initiative in this year's DTM championship after converting pole position into his maiden victory and leading home an Audi one-two in Oschersleben.
The 29-year-old German led home fellow countryman Martin Tomczyx by 1.452 seconds sealing Audi's second consecutive victory of the season.
The triumph was made even sweeter for the German with defending champion Mattias Ekström - the man who beat Scheider off the line en-route to victory at the season curtain-raiser in Hockenheim - unable to progress beyond his eighth place starting position.
"This feeling is just incredible," exulted Scheider after sealing his first win in 77 attempts, "Finally, the long years of waiting patiently have paid off. Thanks to my mechanics of the Team Abt. This moment is very emotional. Now, I will do everything to be among the contenders for the title."
Scheider leaves the Motorsport Arena Oschersleben with a seven-point lead over the reigning champion and a six-point advantage over the new second-place man Martin Tomczyx.
"Today, Timo Scheider was in a class of his own," conceded Tomczyx. "Our cars were perfect from the word go and we were able to pull away. After that, we took it a little bit easier. The safety-car phase brought some excitement, but our cars went like a rocket and as a result, we managed to pull clear right away once more."
Audi did however, face a greater threat from the Mercedes Benz runners this time around with Bruno Spengler, Paul di Resta and Jamie Green chomping at the heels of the leading Audis and eventually finishing third, fourth and fifth respectively.
"The race went well," professed third-place man Spengler, "I couldn't expect any more from fifth place on the grid. I got a lot of support from my team. Otherwise, this certainly wouldn't have been possible.
"I am happy with third place and I didn't want to risk too much. In the DTM, every point is important for the championship."
Had Audi driver Tom Kristensen not jumped the start, which he received a drive through penalty for, and had he not collided with Maro Engel later in the race, then Audi might have been able to repeat the 1-2-3 triumph they achieved at Hockenheim since the Dane had qualified strongly in second place.
Audi motorsport director Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich was unsympathetic in his appraisal of Kristensen's performance.
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