ABT Sportsline has already won five DTM races at the Lausitzring. In the current GT3 era of the DTM, Kelvin van der Linde, Mike Rockenfeller and René Rast took three podiums for the team from Kempten in the past two years. In total, ABT Sportsline has recorded no less than 29 podium finishes in 32 DTM races at the Lausitzring.
After the first half of the season, ABT driver Ricardo Feller is the best Audi driver in the drivers’ standings, only 29 points behind the leader at the halfway mark, Thomas Preining in the Porsche. Ahead of Kelvin by only one point each are defending champion Sheldon van der Linde (BMW) and Mirko Bortolotti (Lamborghini).
Martin Tomczyk: “The Lausitzring should suit our Audi”
After returning from the Nürburgring, the ABT Sportsline DTM squad only had a few days to prepare the two ABT Audi R8 LMS GT3 evo II cars perfectly again. So soon after the Nürburgring, we’re off to the Lausitzring – that’s a pretty intense phase for the team, especially as there’s also a test there on Thursday,” says ABT Motorsport Director Martin Tomczyk. “We’ll make the best possible use of the test in order to start the first race weekend of the second half of the season perfectly sorted. The Lausitzring should actually suit our Audi. Our goal is to close the gap to the front in the championship with Ricardo. And hopefully Kelvin can finally convert his top performance, which he’s been showing on the track all season, into top finishes.”
Ricardo Feller: “From now on, it’s important to score big points”
Ricardo Feller knows the Lausitzring very well from several outings with the Audi R8 LMS. “I think it’s a bit of a shame that we’re now running the slower track variant and not the first corner with the banking – that was pretty cool last year,” says the 23-year-old young Swiss. “But I’m still looking forward to the Lausitzring, which I have good memories of. In 2021, I won the Saturday race there in the GT Masters from pole position. Of course, I hope we can build on that. Braking and traction are very important at the Lausitzring, the track also has a lot of bumps. I think Porsche will be very strong. I hope we can put a good car together, because from now on, it’s important to score big points to move up in the championship.”
Kelvin van der Linde: “Looking forward to the new track variant”
Kelvin van der Linde is not the biggest Lausitzring fan, although he almost won the Sunday DTM race in 2021. “Unfortunately, I’ve always had a lot of bad luck at the Lausitzring so far and therefore don’t have good memories,” says the South African, who lives near Kempten. “I hope that turns around this year with the new layout there. I’m happy that we’re driving on the other track variant, because I wasn’t a big fan of the first corner with the banking. So, I’m even more looking forward to the new track layout, which we can prepare well for on Thursday at the test day.”
ABT driver Kelvin van der Linde on ...
... the special requirements at the Lausitzring: “Getting the tyres into the right working window at the Lausitzring is a difficult task. The track surface is very special. Because of the many slow corners, the driving style is quite different from on other tracks. And when it rains at the Lausitzring, it’s always particularly interesting.”
... the coolest section: “Sector 1.”
... the best overtaking opportunities: “Into the first corner and before the sixth corner – the track is very wide there.”
... the best place to watch: “The main grandstand – there’s always a good atmosphere and a lot is happening there.”
Video for download: A Lausitzring lap with Kelvin van der Linde
Did you know that ...
... Kelvin van der Linde will be taking part in a gravel challenge with an electric rally car in the run-up to the Lausitzring race?
... there will again be a so-called Track Safari at the Lausitzring, with fans in buses and the DTM cars on the track at the same time?
... ABT Motorsport Director Martin Tomczyk, as a driver, won in the DTM at the Lausitzring in 2011?
... the Lausitzring was the scene of the closest finish in recent DTM history in 2020? 0.089 seconds separated ABT driver Nico Müller and René Rast, who crossed the finish line side by side.
... Kelvin van der Linde was clearly on course for victory in Sunday’s DTM race at the Lausitzring in 2021 when the engine of his ABT Audi R8 LMS suddenly cut out on the 27th of 33 laps?