Norisring DTM: Mercedes' Christian Vietoris tops drying qualifying

Christian Vietoris claimed his second career DTM pole position at the Norisring, in a frenetic, drying qualifying dominated by Mercedes

Norisring DTM: Mercedes' Christian Vietoris tops drying qualifying

Rain eased and then stopped between practice and the 20-minute session to set the grid for Saturday afternoon's race, and while the field started on wet tyres, times tumbled throughout the opening half.

Vietoris was one of the first to switch to slicks, with eight minutes remaining, and while Turn 1 remained damp a shootout ensued.

Pascal Wehrlein eventually started the final minute on pole, but was shaded by Robert Wickens and Paul di Resta as the chequered flag flew.

Gary Paffett then went fastest and Jamie Green second, moments before Vietoris recorded his 50.640s lap to secure his first pole since the race at the Lausitzring in 2013.

Just 0.039 seconds shy of his stablemate, Paffett will line up second, and with di Resta third, Wehrlein fourth and Wickens seventh, five Mercedes drivers will start inside the top seven.

Championship leader Green's second half of the session encapsulated the action.

In last place when he switched to slicks, he jumped up to second, fell to 19th, then rose again to 11th, fourth and second over the following laps, before his final effort took him from sixth to third.

Augusto Farfus was the best of the BMW drivers in sixth, two spots ahead of reigning champion Marco Wittmann, but it was a tough session for Audi.

Green and ninth-placed Miguel Molina are its only representatives inside the top 10, while Nico Muller brushed the wall exiting the chicane on his way to 19th and Mattias Ekstrom, Mike Rockenfeller, Adrian Tambay and Timo Scheider fill the last two rows on the grid.

STARTING GRID:

Pos Driver Team Car Time Gap
1 Christian Vietoris HWA Mercedes 50.640s -
2 Gary Paffett ART Mercedes 50.679s 0.039s
3 Jamie Green Rosberg Audi 50.687s 0.047s
4 Paul Di Resta HWA Mercedes 50.751s 0.111s
5 Pascal Wehrlein HWA Mercedes 50.807s 0.167s
6 Augusto Farfus RBM BMW 50.876s 0.236s
7 Robert Wickens HWA Mercedes 50.938s 0.298s
8 Marco Wittmann RMG BMW 50.965s 0.325s
9 Miguel Molina Abt Audi 51.069s 0.429s
10 Martin Tomczyk Schnitzer BMW 51.088s 0.448s
11 Daniel Juncadella Mucke Mercedes 51.090s 0.450s
12 Lucas Auer ART Mercedes 51.126s 0.486s
13 Bruno Spengler MTEK BMW 51.152s 0.512s
14 Maxime Martin RMG BMW 51.198s 0.558s
15 Timo Glock MTEK BMW 51.236s 0.596s
16 Edoardo Mortara Abt Audi 51.262s 0.622s
17 Tom Blomqvist RBM BMW 51.283s 0.643s
18 Antonio Felix da Costa Schnitzer BMW 51.326s 0.686s
19 Nico Muller Rosberg Audi 51.327s 0.687s
20 Maximilian Gotz Mucke Mercedes 51.381s 0.741s
21 Mattias Ekstrom Abt Audi 51.404s 0.764s
22 Mike Rockenfeller Phoenix Audi 51.517s 0.877s
23 Adrien Tambay Abt Audi 51.524s 0.884s
24 Timo Scheider Phoenix Audi 51.539s 0.899s


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Norisring DTM: Robert Wickens fastest for Mercedes in wet practice

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