Rast: ABS on GT3 cars "causing" DTM Norisring crashes

Three-time DTM champion Rene Rast says the anti-lock braking systems on GT3 cars are a factor in the high number of crashes seen in the opening race at the Norisring.

Rast: ABS on GT3 cars "causing" DTM Norisring crashes

The Abt Audi driver finished third in an eventful race won by Thomas Preining on Saturday as a slow puncture on his right-rear tyre in the second stint caused him to drop behind Dennis Olsen.

The race had to be restarted four times after various incidents, and only 11 cars made the finish due to the high attrition rate.

Asked whether such incidents are simply in the nature of the bumpy Norisring street track, which at just four corners is the shortest venue on the calendar, Rast said in the post-race press conference that “it’s possible to race without lots of cars damaged, we saw it in the past in DTM and also other support series”.

Stressing that he hadn’t seen any of the incidents, the Abt Audi driver said: “I think the cause for that probably is the ABS system.

“Because we have ABS in the car, we basically just jump on the brake pedal as hard as we can and hope that the car decelerates.

“Somebody is trying a bit later, somebody earlier, but in the end both of us are on the limit, somebody is misjudging the situation, that’s why we see probably those crashes.

“Without ABS I think everybody would be much more careful, because obviously if you have a lock-up, you lose your whole race.

“The ABS is causing – especially here at the Norisring, lots of those crashes.”

Podium: Rene Rast, Team ABT Sportsline

Podium: Rene Rast, Team ABT Sportsline

Photo by: Alexander Trienitz

As most of the leading championship contenders were embroiled in incidents, Rast’s podium moved him up to third place in the standings, 16 points behind Sheldon van der Linde.

But Rast said that he hoped drivers could “behave a bit better” in Sunday’s second race.

“Obviously it shouldn’t be like that, because we still have a race tomorrow,” he added.

“Also, it’s not cheap. Those cars are quite expensive and all the teams are private teams, so it will be a long and expensive day for most of the teams.

“Hopefully tomorrow we’re going to behave a bit better – if some cars actually make it.

“I’m not sure if we have enough spare parts for all the cars, because obviously with the situation at the moment in the world it is obviously difficult to get spare parts.”

Race-winner Preining said “on a track like this it’s inevitable” to have more contact in Sunday’s race, especially given the nature of the two-by-two rolling restarts.

“Of course, I hope for everybody’s safety that there’s no bad accidents at least,” said the Austrian.

“But on a circuit like this when you are 30 race drivers who are maybe a bit crazy, racing for points, for the win or whatever, it’s full-risk all the time – especially when you are on a restart.

“It’s full risk because it’s the easiest opportunity to gain a position or more than one, so I think on a track like this it’s inevitable.”

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