Lucas Auer claimed pole position for the penultimate DTM race of the season at Hockenheim, closing the title gap to just eight points with two races to go.
The Austrian set a time of 1:36.479 to go quickest, 0.061 ahead of fellow Mercedes-AMG driver Luca Stolz, who will start alongside Auer on the grid. Stolz also claimed two points for second on the grid, also closing down his gap to points leader Sheldon van der Linde to 26 points.
Mirko Bortolotti, who is also in title contention, qualified third, almost a tenth and a half off Auer. He took the final point available in qualifying, closing his gap to van der to Linde to 15 points.
The ‘first’ non-title contender will start fourth, Marco Wittmann just 0.010 off Bortolotti. In fifth will be Maro Engel, will championship leader S. van der Linde will start sixth, meaning he has work to do in order not to lose the lead of the championship going into the final race. The South African was 0.229 off Auer’s time, unable to match the Austrian.
His brother Kelvin starts just behind him in seventh, the elder van der Linde 0.280 off Auer’s pace-setting time.
Two other championship contenders start eighth and ninth, Thomas Preining ahead of Rene Rast. The German is currently third in the championship, 12 off S. van der Linde, while Preining is fourth, 14 points adrift.
Finally, in tenth is MNico Muller, for his last-but-one race as an Audi driver before a new job with Peugeot as a 9X8 Hypercar driver in the FIA World Endurance Championship.
The race begins at 12:30 local time or 13:30 in the UK.
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