Audi insists title hopes still alive

Audi insists that it is not out of the running for the DTM title, despite suffering a torrid season in comparison to Mercedes so far in 2010

Audi insists title hopes still alive

The Ingolstadt-based manufacturer, which became the first to win three straight DTM titles last season, has only taken one victory in the first six races this year. That has left Mattias Ekstrom as its highest-placed driver in the standings, but the Swede sits fourth in the championship, 16 points behind leader Bruno Spengler.

Spengler's closest pursuers are his HWA-Mercedes team-mates Gary Paffett and Paul di Resta, and Audi Sport boss Wolfgang Ullrich hopes that the battle between the three will create an opportunity for their rivals.

"When three drivers battle it out with one another, a fourth one could take the prize," said Ullrich. "This fourth one is currently Mattias Ekstrom, and his championship chances are still alive.

"A win at Brands Hatch [this weekend] and the situation could look far more promising. At the same time, you shouldn't write off Timo Scheider [21 points behind Spengler]. I think one of these five drivers will win the title this year."

Ullrich added that Audi had been more competitive than its results suggested. But he also highlighted that this year's new control tyre compound from Dunlop continues to cause his teams problems.

"We could have won more races - we should have done so," he said. "Our car has demonstrated its competitiveness again and again. But motor racing is all about results.

"We just made too many minor mistakes and at the end of the day, these have prevented us from making the most of our chances.

"The new tyre spec has also been a factor. [The tyres] have raised a lot of questions in our camp, and were the reasons for many hours of overtime."

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