Kristensen Apologises to Paffett

Audi's Tom Kristensen has apologised to DTM Championship leader Gary Paffett over his on-track behaviour at the Norisring on Sunday, but he refused to comment on speculation that he was acting on team orders

Kristensen Apologises to Paffett

Paffett was left furious with Kristensen after he appeared to slow deliberately while leading the race, just prior to his second pitstop. The Briton accused his rival of then trying to drive him off the road and claimed he had lost all 'respect' for him as a racing driver.

But speaking to Autosport-Atlas, Kristensen revealed that he had spoken to Paffett about his actions to make it clear that he had not deliberately played it dirty. He also expressed his own frustration at the situation, because he knew at that stage of the race he could not win.

"I have said sorry to Gary," said Kristensen, who eventually finished seventh. "Gary deserved the victory yesterday and I know for me that at that stage I couldn't win the race.

"I was of course disappointed about that. I would probably have finished fourth if I would have continued my pace as before, so in that sense I was not pleased obviously."

When asked why he had slowed down, Kristensen declined to explain the real reasons - fuelling speculation about internal team orders at Audi.

"I slowed down a lot. It was something that I think was, let's say, not very nice and it is not something that will happen again.

"Wherever it (the decision to slow) came from I have no comment, but I can just make sure that it will never happen again."

Despite Kristensen's refusal to speak about why he dropped his pace so dramatically, there are suggestions that the Audi driver was asked to slow deliberately and hinder Paffett's pace to try and drop him back into the clutches of his teammates.

This comes despite the fact by that stage of the race Paffett was comfortably clear of the pursuing Audis of privateer Christian Abt and Championship challenger Mattias Ekstrom. This meant that Kristensen's help was effectively wasted and only served to ruin his own chances in the race.

shares
comments
Audi Tactics Baffle Ekstrom, Paffett
Previous article

Audi Tactics Baffle Ekstrom, Paffett

Next article

Kristensen Looks to Bounce Back

Kristensen Looks to Bounce Back
Load comments
The other Hamilton conqueror seeking career revival Plus

The other Hamilton conqueror seeking career revival

On his rise through the ranks before reaching Formula 1, Lewis Hamilton was usually a cut above the rest. But he never truly asserted himself over a Mercedes-backed fellow Briton who traded single-seaters for touring cars and is now seeking new opportunities after a year largely spent on the sidelines

DTM
Dec 18, 2021
How the DTM's shambolic finale poses awkward future questions Plus

How the DTM's shambolic finale poses awkward future questions

OPINION: The scenes at the Norisring as Mercedes used blatant team orders to secure the first DTM title of the new GT3 era totally undermined the credibility of the championship. But as well as overshadowing the season, it also presents uncomfortable questions to series bosses about the direction it is headed in

DTM
Oct 12, 2021
How Audi's new DTM star is channeling Rast to achieve his "childhood dream" Plus

How Audi's new DTM star is channeling Rast to achieve his "childhood dream"

Having learned the ropes in GT3 alongside Rene Rast, Kelvin van der Linde is in line to take up the three-time champion's baton as Audi's new DTM king. From humble origins in South Africa, it's been a remarkable journey so far for the current series leader, but he knows that the 2021 title is a long way from settled just yet

DTM
Sep 18, 2021
The number-crunching behind the new-look DTM's equalisation drive Plus

The number-crunching behind the new-look DTM's equalisation drive

Switching to GT3 regulations marked a fresh start for the DTM in 2021, but it has also drawn a line in the sand against other series using similar cars by engaging AVL Racing to develop a bespoke Balance of Performance system. Here’s how it works

DTM
Jul 23, 2021
The initial verdict on DTM's move to GT3 cars Plus

The initial verdict on DTM's move to GT3 cars

OPINION: Facing collapse last year, the DTM has shifted its philosophy from a championship for silhouette-based touring cars to GT machines not too dissimilar to those racing across multiple series worldwide. But despite some initial BoP-based teething troubles, there were some pleasant findings as the 'new DTM' got underway at Monza

DTM
Jun 22, 2021
Why Albon has his work cut out in the new-look DTM Plus

Why Albon has his work cut out in the new-look DTM

The DTM moves into its bold new GT3 era with welcome support from Red Bull, which enters two AF Corse-run Ferraris. That includes one for ex-F1 driver Alex Albon, who’s determined to make a success of his GT switch - but he knows it won't be easy...

DTM
Jun 17, 2021
The slow-burner threatening to unseat Audi's DTM king Plus

The slow-burner threatening to unseat Audi's DTM king

It's taken him a while to emerge as a consistent title challenger, but in the final year of DTM's Class One rule set, Nico Muller has smoothed the rough edges and has double champion stablemate Rene Rast working harder than ever to keep up in the title race

DTM
Oct 13, 2020
How a DTM failure became an unlikely Nurburgring conqueror Plus

How a DTM failure became an unlikely Nurburgring conqueror

Opel's fortunes in the DTM had taken a turn for the worst by 2003 - hardly the pedigree that suggested it could take on the toughest 24-hour race of them all. But that's exactly what it did

DTM
Sep 23, 2020