Qualifying: Rain doesn’t dampen Dumbreck’s day

D2 AMG Mercedes ace Peter Dumbreck took his first DTM pole at the Sachsenring today (Saturday) as a rain storm turned qualifying from a 45-minute session to a one-lap shoot-out

Qualifying: Rain doesn’t dampen Dumbreck’s day

Rain began to spit just minutes before the start of the session, which prompted the entire field to get out on track from the start. Christijan Albers (Persson Mercedes) was the first on the ball with a lap of 1m21.566s, but was soon toppled by Dumbreck's 1m21.204s.

Dumbreck, who finished second in both races here last year, was guaranteed his first pole in the series when the rain began to fall more heavily and, after 10 minutes, the track was completely awash. Although the precipitation halted with 20 minutes of the session remaining, and the sun came out, that wasn't enough time for it to dry sufficiently.

The big loser as a result was reigning champion, and series leader, Bernd Schneider. He will start 20th after off track excursions on both of his attempted flying laps. Embarrassingly for him, Schneider was over 6secs slower than his pole sitting team mate.

"I haven't seen Bernd yet, but I imagine he's not too happy," said Dumbreck. "He went out one lap too late, and there were yellow flags out at the first corner which didn't help him. He was just unlucky.

"I could have done another lap, but had David Saelens in front of me as we approached the yellow flags, so my decision was made for me. If my first lap was good enough, then it was good enough," added Dumbreck - it was.

Mattias Ekstrom (Abt Audi TT-R) will join Dumbreck on the front row in his Abt Audi TT-R after likewise pipping Albers, who will start third after impressing all weekend.

"It's a nice feeling for me to be at the front of the grid," said Ekstrom. "I've had a lot to learn this year, remember, this is my first year driving a rear-wheel drive car. All the circuits in Sweden are in flat fields - I've never raced at a circuit with so many crests before."

The rain also played into the hands of Opel, as its star of testing and free practice, Michael Bartels, produced an excellent lap under pressure to take fourth on the grid in his Holzer-run Astra Coupe, four-tenths off pole position.

Marcel Tiemann, subbing for the injured Bernd Maylander, gave the Eschmann-Manthey team a boost with fifth on the grid, ahead of Christian Abt (Audi), Manuel Reuter (Opel), Kris Nissen (subbing in Laurent Aiello's Audi) and this morning's pace setter Martin Tomczyk (Audi).

Others left with good cause to rue the rain were Warsteiner Merc colleagues Uwe Alzen (16th) and Marcel Fassler (18th), while Thomas Jager will start 21st after dumping his Persson Merc in the gravel on his first flying lap.


Peter Dumbreck, 2001 D2 Mercedes CLK, 1m21.204s
Mattias Ekstrom, Abt Sportsline Audi TT-R, 1m21.480s
Christijan Albers, 2000 Persson Mercedes CLK, 1m21.566s
Michael Bartels, 2001 Holzer Opel Astra Coupe, 1m21.601s
Marcel Tiemann, 2001 Eschmann-Manthey Mercedes CLK, 1m21.719s
Christian Abt, 2001 Abt Sportsline Audi TT-R, 1m22.054s
Manuel Reuter, 2001 Phoenix Opel Astra Coupe, 1m22.217s
Kris Nissen, 2001 Abt Sportsline Audi TT-R, 1m22.330s
Martin Tomczyk, 2001 Abt Sportsline Audi TT-R, 1m22.449s
Patrick Huisman, 2001 Eschmann-Manthey Mercedes CLK, 1m22.494s
Hubert Haupt, 2000 Euroteam Opel Astra Coupe, 1m22.520s
Darren Turner, 2000 Rosberg Mercedes CLK, 1m22.527s
David Saelens, 2000 Rosberg Mercedes CLK, 1m22.529s
Joachim Winkelhock, 2001 Holzer Opel Astra Coupe, 1m22.632s
Timo Scheider, 2001 Holzer Opel Astra Coupe, 1m22.785s
Uwe Alzen, 2001 Warsteiner Mercedes CLK, 1m22.901s
Yves Olivier, 2000 Phoenix Opel Astra Coupe, 1m23.310s
Marcel Fassler, 2001 Warsteiner Mercedes CLK, 1m23.792s
Alain Menu, 2001 Euroteam Opel Astra Coupe, 1m24.004s
Bernd Schneider, 2001 D2 Mercedes CLK, 1m27.275s
Thomas Jager, 2000 Persson Mercedes CLK, 1m34.808s

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