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Marco Wittmann claims DTM win number two of the season for BMW – Bruno Spengler third after impressive comeback.

The two DTM rookies in the squad of BMW Motorsport drivers scored their first points of the season: like Spengler, Maxime Martin (BE) fought back impressively to finish sixth in the SAMSUNG BMW M4 DTM. António Félix da Costa (PT) came home eighth in the Red Bull BMW M4 DTM. Timo Glock (DE), his team-mate at BMW Team MTEK, suffered a disappointing end after what had been an impressive display at the Hungaroring. Starting from second on the grid, the DEUTSCHE POST BMW M4 DTM was on course for a podium finish for long periods of the race. However, a combination of the harder compound and some overly-aggressive driving from his opponents resulted in Glock losing ground over the final laps. A puncture suffered as a result of a collision meant he eventually had to settle for 19th.



Christian Vietoris gives Mercedes shock wet win

Mercedes' Christian Vietoris came from the back of the field to take an incredible maiden DTM win in wet conditions at Oschersleben.




Wittmann wins Hockenheim season opener


BMW’s Marco Wittmann has taken his first ever DTM victory at Hockenheim also giving the M4 machine its maiden success on the first attempt.
Wittmann, who started from second on the grid, Christened BMW’s new M4 DTM challenger in the perfect manner by finishing almost 13 seconds up the road from Audi’s Mattias Ekstrom.

Ekstrom stormed from seventh to second to vindicate his confidence in RS 5′s Hockenheim race set-up.
Pole-man Adrien Tambay couldn’t emulate his Saturday success but still scored a strong result to take the final step on the rostrum and ensuring Audi finished the race with two cars within the top three.
Mike Rockenfeller displayed why he’s the current DTM champion after methodically recovering to finish fourth from a less than satisfactory eleventh on the grid. Timo Glock also elevated his way up the order to begin his second season in the DTM with a respectable fifth place finish.Glock led a further three car BMW-train ahead of Bruno Spengler, who dropped down from third, Martin Tomczyk and Augusto Farfus in sixth, seventh and eighth.Timo Scheider completed his return to the Phoenix-Audi fold in ninth ahead of Joey Hand, who made it six BMW’s within the points paying positions in tenth. Mercedes once again found themselves in despair with an apparent no end to their dismal run of form. The Stuttgart manufacturer failed the score a point at the season opener with the nearest C-Coupe machine, driven by Pascal Wehrlein, finishing over 20-seconds away from the points in eleventh position.



Farfus wins at ZandvoortRockenfeller is the new DTM champion

The battle has been decided: in the ninth round of the 2013 DTM season at Zandvoort in The Netherlands, Mike Rockenfeller claimed an early championship title. In the penultimate round of the season at the dune circuit on the North Sea coast, second place for the 29-year old was enough. Thus, prior to the DTM finale at Hockenheim, he is leading the drivers’ standings beyond reach for Augusto Farfus (BMW), for whom even victory at Zandvoort wasn’t enough. For the Brazilian, it was his third win of the year. Timo Scheider (Audi) scored his best result of the season in third place. In ninth position, Gary Paffett was the best-placed Mercedes-Benz driver. A full press release with quotes will follow shortly.

Farfus dominates at Oschersleben

BMW's Augusto Farfus has taken a commanding DTM victory at Oschersleben ahead of Audi's Mike Rockenfeller, who now stands on the brink of taking his maiden title. Farfus, from second on the grid, had a lightning start to immediately dispatch pole-man Jamie Green, who in turn sat ahead of the fast starting Bruno Spengler after leaping from sixth to third. The Brazilian then faced a relatively untroubled route to victory as the RBM-BMW was able to establish a comfortable gap ahead of Green and Spengler.

Farfus' only 'scare' came from Rockenfeller as the Audi man only narrowly missed out on gaining the net-lead after the first round of stops. Rockenfeller had pitted on lap 3 for the option tyre, emerging in clean air, and was able to pull the time lost after dropping to fourth. Farfus' Oschersleben success means he is the only man still able to stop Rockenfeller from taking the DTM title, 33 points back from the German. Green followed his Audi team-mate home to collect a fine maiden podium since joining the Ingolstadt manufacturer over the winter.Audi-duo of Filipe Albuquerque and Timo Scheider clinched their best results of the season in fourth and fifth.Gary Paffett celebrated his 100th DTM to finish sixth as the best placed Mercedes but finally drops out of title contention.Audi locked out the rest of the points paying positions meaning all of the 'four ringed' machines entered scored points with Mattias Ekstrom leading home Miguel Molina, Adrien Tambay and Edoardo Mortara, the latter scoring only his third point of the season. Spengler spectacularly ended his title defence following a robust panel barging spat with countryman Robert Wickens. The pair, in close company for a handful of laps, finally came to blows as Wickens lunged his way through during turn 1's Hotel corner. Spengler refusing to back down then collided with Wickens a corner later, spinning the Mercedes almost in tyres – the pair both rejoined but later retired with damage.

Typical Nürburgring weather sees Robert Wickens take maiden win

Robert Wickens (Mercedes) was unmoved by the changing weather conditions at the Nürburgring. The Canadian took advantage of it to score his first win in the DTM series.
Perfectly executed pit stops and great race craft served Wickens well. The 24-year-old from Guelph, Ontario, beat pole sitter Augusto Farfus (BMW), who dropped back at the start but came back strong to claim second position, ahead of Christian Vietoris (Mercedes).
Championship leader Mike Rockenfeller's (Audi) early switch from slick to rain tires helped him recover from an early off to fourth at the finish.
The results at the Nürburgring helped Wickens and Vietoris move into third and second spots in the standings respectively. Vietoris now trails Rockenfeller by only 35 points, and Wickens by 36. Nevertheless, the German extended his lead, as Bruno Spengler (BMW), who used to be second in the title hunt, failed to score altogether.
Spengler could only salvage 14th from an early collision. His deficit to the leader is now 39 points.
Drivers only completed 47 of the 49 laps, since the race reached its time limit before the scheduled distance was completed, as it often happens in wet conditions.

Moscow Raceway: Rockenfeller hails significance of Russian win

Audi's Mike Rockenfeller has admitted last weekend's Moscow triumph is a 'big step' in the championship race as the German vies to win his maiden DTM title. Rockenfeller moved 27 points clear of his nearest rival and defending champion, Bruno Spengler, after dominating proceedings at the Moscow Raceway to claim his second victory of the season. Spengler and BMW have seen their early season advantage evaporate during the past few race weekends with the Canadian even failing to score a point in Russia following a collision with, ironically, Rockenfeller's Phoenix-Audi team mate Miguel Molina. Rockenfeller, meanwhile, has displayed the consistency of a champion and as a result hasn't finished outside the top-five since the season opener at Hockenheim.
“Obviously, this is a really big step in the Championship,” said Rockenfeller.
“It's great having won here at the DTM's premiere in Russia. It was a similarly perfect race as at Brands Hatch: starting from the pole position and finishing in first place.
“My Audi RS 5 DTM was fantastic and Team Phoenix did a superb job. At the Norisring, I was too slow but here everything fit together.”
Britain's Gary Paffett still remains in the championship hunt 37-points off the summit with 100-points still on the table.

Mattias Ekström loses Norisring victory

Audi driver Mattias Ekström has lost his victory in the fifth DTM round at the Norisring. After the Swede illegitimately had water poured into the pockets of his race suit in parc fermé in Nuremberg on his 35th birthday, he was excluded from the race by the stewards because of an infringement of the parc fermé rules. As a result, victory went to Mercedes-Benz driver Robert Wickens from Canada, who scored his maiden DTM race win and brought the brand from Stuttgart its eleventh consecutive success at the Norisring.

Christian Vietoris and Daniel Juncadella (both Mercedes-Benz) were promoted to second and third place respectively. Points’ leader Mike Rockenfeller (Audi) was classified fifth and now has a margin of two points from Bruno Spengler (BMW), who finished fifth in Nuremberg.

Ekström’s Team Audi Sport Abt Sportsline has announced its intention to appeal and has two days to back this up in writing. The amended result remains provisional until the appeal has been decided upon. Moreover, Ekström was given a 1,000 euros fine because he failed to attach the steering wheel properly after getting out of his car in parc fermé.

Le Mans: Audi Wins After Dramatic Race Marred By Death Of Allan Simonsen


The win gave Kristensen his ninth victory while team-mate Allan McNish claimed his hat-trick and Loic Duval his maiden win.

The trio finished ahead of the #8 Toyota TS030 Hybrid of Anthony Davidson, Stephane Sarrazin and Sebastien Buemi after a close battle but one which Audi looked to manage for more than half of the 24 hours. Rounding off the podium was the #3 Audi of Oliver Jarvis, Marc Gene and Lucas Di Grassi.

However, the celebrations were muted because of the death of Aston Martin driver, Allan Simonsen, in the early stages of the race.



Gary Paffett wins at Lausitzring

Gary Paffett (EURONICS Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) claims his first win of 2013 in the fourth race of the DTM season. Team-mate Christian Vietoris (DTM Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) finishes third to take the second podium in his DTM career. No fewer than five of the six Mercedes-Benz DTM drivers finish among the points in front of a huge Lausitzring crowd (65,000 through the gates over the weekend).




BMW M3 DTM Triple win in Spielberg



BMW-driver and 2012 winner Bruno Spengler came first at the three day DTM Rally Championship in Styria this weekend.

BMW took the top three places with Marco Wittmann finishing in second position and Timo Glock coming third.

Spengler said: "The car was splendid during the whole race and the team really did a superb job."

Rockenfeller leads from start to finish at Brands Hatch

Second race, second winner: Mike Rockenfeller claimed his second DTM win at Brands Hatch in southern England. The Audi driver started from pole position and never looked like losing his lead over the course of the 98 laps as he secured the first victory of the season for Audi.

“Of course I’m happy and relieved that we put the things we’d been planning for into practice out on the track,” said Rockenfeller, who set off to take part in the Nürburgring 24 Hours immediately after the race. “In the DTM, in the race, all sorts of things can happen. We obviously had a superb foundation with the great qualifying session yesterday. Then it was up to me to produce a good start, and that worked out too. Afterwards, my team and I gave everything. I tried to push on every lap. I think you could tell that we had the race under control.”

Second place went to defending DTM champion Bruno Spengler (BMW), who crossed the finish line about seven seconds behind Rockenfeller. Mercedes-Benz driver Gary Paffett looked like finishing third. However, the local favourite was handed a retrospective five-second penalty for speeding during a yellow phase. The beneficiary of this penalty was fellow Mercedes-Benz man Robert Wickens from Canada, who claimed the first DTM podium of his career.

The remaining points positions were occupied by rookie Marco Wittmann, Joey Hand (both BMW), the penalised Paffett, Mattias Ekström (Audi), Christian Vietoris (Mercedes-Benz), Timo Scheider (Audi) and newcomer Pascal Wehrlein (Mercedes-Benz), who picked up his first point in only his second DTM race.

In the championship, Brands Hatch winner Rockenfeller now leads on 29 points, just ahead of Spengler (28), Farfus (25), Paffett (20) and Vietoris (19). The DTM makes the second of its four trips abroad in a fortnight when Austria’s Red Bull Ring hosts the series from 31st May to 2nd June.

Augusto Farfus wins Hockenheim sizzler


RBM BMW’s Augusto Farfus has won a thrilling DTM season opener at Hockenheim ahead of BMW stablemate Dirk Werner and Mercedes’ Christian Vietoris after the Brazilian made his tyre strategy work to perfection.

Pole sitter Timo Scheider held the lead in his Abt Audi until Farfus, who also elected to start on the new for 2013 option tyre, took the lead after using his DRS towards the end of the fourth lap. Reigning champion Bruno Spengler also made a good start from seventh on the grid and was up to third come lap three.

However, Scheider lost any chance of the race win after he elected to stay out one lap later than everyone else who pitted on lap five due to the Safety Car period which came as a result of Adrien Tambay’s retirement.

The decision by the race winner to pit on lap five seemed to put him out of position as he spent the middle part of the race stuck in the midfield, but a pass on Mercedes’ Christian Vietoris – who despite suffering an appalling start which saw him drop to 11th, scored the first podium of his DTM career – put him back into contention later in the race.

DTM newcomer, Pascal Wehrlein, was another driver who elected to start on the option compound and inherited the lead after electing not to pit under the Safety Car on lap five. This decision saw the RSC Mucke driver lead Mercedes stablemates Daniel Juncadella and Gary Paffett until lap 21, when he made his first mandatory stop for the standard compound tyre.

The DTM season opener also proved to be yet another difficult exercise for Audi, after Timo Scheider finished the best pace of the Ingolstadt cars in sixth, with Mike Rockenfeller finishing two positions behind. Mattias Ekstrom and Edoardo Mortara endured difficult races following contact with each other going into the stadium. The Italian had to retire due to severe damage on the front and rear of his car with Ekstrom also parking his RS5 at the side of the track due to a loss of drive on lap 28.

George East

Thank You & Goodbye Michael!







Vettel wins 3rd straight F1 title in Brazil

Sebastian Vettel found himself spinning around on the track just after the start, watching helplessly as other cars whizzed past him. His Formula One title hopes seemed to be drifting away with them.

It was only the start of Vettel's problems Sunday in what he called the toughest race of his career. But he overcame all of them and came away with the only prize that mattered - his third straight championship title.

Vettel shook off a first-lap crash and other difficulties to finish sixth at the Brazilian Grand Prix, good enough to protect his lead over challenger Fernando Alonso and become F1's youngest three-time champion at age 25.



Spengler wins DTM drivers’ title, BMW Team Schnitzer tops the team standings and BMW wins the manufacturers’ title


BMW’s Bruno Spengler has taken the 2012 Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters title in emphatic style, beating long-time series leader Gary Paffett in the final race to secure his first German crown.

Going into the race Mercedes’ Paffett held a slender three point advantage over the Canadian and after qualifying a position ahead of his rival in second knew that he would need to keep him behind in order to take the title. However a poor start by the Brit allowed Spengler to slot into second, which became first when he effortlessly passed fellow BMW driver Augusto Farfus on the opening lap.

Paffett had dropped down to fourth on the opening tour, although moved up to third when Mattias Ekström attempted to put a pass on Joey Hand into the hairpin. Paffett moved up to second at the first round of pit stops on lap 11, jumping Farfus, but was not able to catch Spengler and prevent him from taking the championship.

Brazilian Farfus held on to finish in third, taking his third podium result of the season. The only other title contender going into the race, Jamie Green, came through from ninth on the grid to finish in fourth.

Swede Ekström had looked likely to challenge the top three until disaster struck at his first pit stop. When the Audi driver returned to the circuit he lost his right-front wheel, forcing him out of the race.

Spengler’s team-mate Dirk Werner finished in fifth, which allowed BMW Team Schnitzer to secure the Team’s championship at the same time. Indeed BMW’s return to the DTM could not have been better for the manufacturer, who took all three titles in their first year.

Edoardo Mortara was the top Audi driver in sixth, ahead of the BMW’s of Andy Priaulx and Joey Hand.

The Mercedes of Ralf Schumacher and Christian Vietoris completed the top ten, despite the latter being involved in an incident with David Coulthard earlier in the race whilst battling for position.

Frenchman Adrien Tambay failed to finish the race, retiring after just one lap with damaged right-rear suspension. A lap later another Audi, this time driven by Mike Rockenfeller, was also out of the race.

David Coulthard ended his racing career with a retirement from the race after contact with Timo Scheider. The German was later penalised for the contact, which meant he finished down in 12th position. A disastrous race also befell spaniard Miguel Molina, who retired after 25 laps when he spun out into the gravel at the Sachs Kurve.

Spengler’s win saw him take the title from Paffett by just four points – and it is the only time he has been at the top of the standings.




Augusto celebrated his first victory in the DTM
Spengler rescued points



Sebastian Vettel wins ahead of Jenson Button

Schumacher's worst season continues.

The explosions that echoed around Singapore’s night sky seconds after officials called time on this marathon two-hour grand prix, causing many at the circuit to jump in alarm, turned out to be nothing more sinister than fireworks.


(Spengler gives BMW third victory of the season at Oschersleben)

Canadian BMW driver Bruno Spengler has scored a dominant win in the eighth DTM round of the season. Thus, the 29-year old reduced his gap to championship leader Gary Paffett (Mercedes-Benz), who finished second, to eleven points. Paffett’s compatriot and fellow Mercedes-Benz driver Jamie Green, who dropped back one place to third in the points’ standings, was the third driver on the podium. In the Magdeburger Börde region, Mike Rockenfeller was the best-placed Audi driver in sixth. Now, the battle for the title will be decided between Mercedes-Benz and BMW.


Edoardo Mortara claims second season win at Zandvoort


Edoardo Mortara (Audi) is the winner of the seventh DTM season round at Zandvoort in The Netherlands. After 43 laps at the dune circuit near the coast, the Audi driver crossed the finish line ahead of his fellow Audi drivers Mike Rockenfeller and Mattias Ekström. Jamie Green (Mercedes-Benz) missed out on a podium finish, he took the flag in fourth place. Behind Adrien Tambay (Audi), Bruno Spengler (BMW) ended up as the best-placed BMW driver in sixth place. Gary Paffett (Mercedes-Benz) finished seventh. In the drivers’ standings, Paffett remains in the lead with 109 points from Green (93 points) and Spengler (91 points). A full press release with quotes will follow shortly.


Spengler Claims Second DTM Win for BMW this Season (at Nurburgring)

Bruno Spengler took his second win of the season, dominating the race at the Nürburgring and moves up to second in the drivers' championship, as points leader Gary Paffett crosses the line in sixth.
Spengler had a great start and held the lead into the first corner, whilst Filipe Albuquerque stalled from third on the grid and was lucky to be avoided by the cars behind - most notably Martin Tomczyk, who was able to move into fourth position in the BMW Team RMG M3.


DTM 2012 Munich Show Event Final Ekström vs Green




The winner of the competition at the 2012 DTM show event in Munich is Mattias Ekström (Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline). In front of 45,000 spectators, the Audi factory driver at the wheel of his Red Bull Audi A5 DTM showcased a spectacular finale against Jamie Green in the Mercedes-Benz.


Green and Schumacher wins Munich team race

Mercedes HWA drivers Jamie Green and Ralf Schumacher won the team battle of the DTM Munich Olympic Stadium event. The duo beat ABT Audi drivers Timo Scheider and Adrien Tambay in the finals.
"Of course, I am happy with our first place. This was a perfect day for me. I could get used to this," said Schumacher.

The driver pairs were decided through the morning practice laps where the four fastest drivers from each manufacturer went on.

Green and Schumacher started by beating Miguel Molina and Mattias Ekström, then team mates Gary Paffett and Christian Vietoris, before going on to the final. Best BMW duo were Joey Hand and Dirk Werner, losing out to Scheider and Tambay in the semi final.

The Munich event, which does not give points to the championship, continues tomorrow with all DTM drivers going head-to-head.

Webber beats Alonso to second Silverstone win


Mark Webber has won the British Grand Prix for a second time, reducing Fernando Alonso’s championship lead to 13 points following a late-race pass. Sebastian Vettel completed the podium on the sole all-dry day of the weekend, as Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button struggled to only eighth and tenth positions for McLaren.

Green Steals Norisring Win From Tomczyk At The Very Last Corner

Jamie Green recorded a memorable fourth DTM win around the Norisring after stealing victory from Martin Tomczyk at what turned out to be the very last corner of the race.

Spain celebrates Alonso won in Valencia


Grand Prix of Europe has brought huge surprise. Vettel withdrew from the race and the head of the eleventh place qualifying for Alonso. The podium finish him off Raikkonen and Schumacher.

Audi's hybrid Le Mans win 'high value' says boss Dr Wolgang Ullrich


Audi's motorsport boss Dr Wolfgang Ullrich described the value of the manufacturer's 11th victory at Le Mans as 'very high' after it became the first car maker in history to win the race with hybrid technology and four-wheel drive.


The two Audi R18 e-tron quattros finished first and second in the 2012 event after leading almost the entire way, and having also been the first manufacturer to win with a diesel engine, in 2006, Ullrich described this new achievement as special.

"The value is very high, because I mean we have always been pushing through the years to bring new technologies to run at Le Mans in race cars," he told AUTOSPORT. "Then to push them to their limit and then bring this technology into our road cars and make it available to our customers is why we go racing."

Contrary to speculation, the two hybrid cars were left free to race until the penultimate hour, following Allan McNish's accident at the Porsche Curves - which effectively ruled out any threat to the winning #1 car of Andre Lotterer, Benoit Treluyer and Marcel Fassler.

Ullrich admitted that he had taken pride in allowing his four cars to race for the win.

"I'm taking satisfaction for sure out of that because I know my drivers quite well and we trust each other," he said.

"This was a race of the kind you can arguably experience only at Le Mans," he added. "You should never rejoice too early at Le Mans, which was obvious again especially on Sunday noon. The whole world was already talking about a one-two-three-four victory and all of a sudden two of our cars had accidents almost simultaneously.

"That the squad repeatedly managed to repair the cars so quickly after the slips clearly speaks for Audi Sport Team Joest that can simply be banked on at Le Mans.

"It was a very big challenge to develop a hybrid car in such a short time that is quick and able to hold up for 24 hours. The fact that, as in 2001 with the TFSI engine and in 2006 with the TDI, we managed to be successful right on the first run simply proves the level of technological expertise that is available at Audi."



Author: Simon Strang,

The seventh race, the seventh winner: Lewis Hamilton!

...and Mercedes betrayed Michael again. (twice)

Mortara Collects First Audi A5 Win in DTM


For Edoardo Mortara (Audi), the fourth round of the 2012 DTM season at the Red Bull Ring in Austria will remain in his memory for a long time. After his maiden pole position on Saturday, the Italian went on to score his first-ever win in his 14th career start in the DTM. After 47 laps at the 4.326 kilometres long circuit in Styria, he crossed the finish line as the winner. Martin Tomczyk (BMW) finished second, 1.068 seconds down. Gary Paffett (Mercedes-Benz) rounded out the podium in third place and extended his points’ lead with his fourth podium finish from as many races. After four rounds, Paffett is in the lead with 83 points from Mattias Ekström (47 points) and Jamie Green (44 points).


Photo: Audi AG

The sixth race, the sixth winner - Mark Webber

Michael won the qualification for the Grand Prix of Monaco

And although it will be disqualified. He showed that it is still fast and delighted his fans.

Paffet won in Brands Hatch


He came home looking for a victory in a course he knows well—and Gary Paffett delivered. The Mercedes driver took the win at Brands Hatch to secure his second victory in the first three races of the DTM 2012 season, extending his lead in the drivers’ standings and also helping Mercedes extend the team lead.

Over 27,000 people were in attendance over the three days of the DTM weekend, and Paffett would not disappoint the home crowd as he brought the win. This was his 19th win in 84 DTM races, giving him a win rate of 23 percent—the best clip among the current crop of drivers racing in the DTM. Incidentally, this was Paffett’s first DTM win here in Brands Hatch.

Paffett clocked in at 1:10:1.585, followed by Bruno Spengler of BMW for second place some five seconds later. Audi’s Mike Rockenfeller took the last podium spot. Mercedes’ other drivers couldn’t come close to Paffett’s performance, as Christian Vietoris ended up sixth after getting held back from the start to the early laps and Jamie Green could only manage eighth. Many of the drivers experienced difficulty when it came to overtaking at this particular track.

After three races, Paffett has 68 points. Spengler is second with 43, Audi’s Mattias Ekstrom third with 35, and Jamie Green close by with 34.
by Ryan

Fifth race, the fifth winner


Pastor Maldonado became the first Venezuelan to win a Formula One race by triumphing at the Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday before going on to play an heroic role in a dramatic blaze in his Williams team's garage.

Maldonado's win, in just his 24th race, was also the team's first victory since the 2004 Brazilian Grand Prix and came on the weekend of team founder Sir Frank Williams' 70th birthday.

But on a dramatic day for the Venezuelan driver, he was later pictured on Twitter carrying his young cousin to safety after the team garage was engulfed by flames.

A total of 16 people were injured, one with severe burns, when the fire - believed to have been caused by an electrical fault in a fuel rig - broke out.

Maldonado was forced to carry his 12-year-old cousin Manuel, who was wearing a protective boot on a broken right foot, to safety as thick, black smoke billowed down the pit lane at the Catalunya Circuit.

"After today's Spanish Grand Prix a fire occurred in the team's garage which originated from the fuel area," said a Williams team statement.

"Four team personnel were injured in the incident and subsequently taken to the medical centre.

"Three are now receiving treatment at local hospitals for their injuries, while the fourth has been released.

"The team will monitor their condition and ensure they receive the best possible care.

"The team, the fire services and the police are working together to determine the root cause of the fire and an update statement will be released in due course."

The Catalan regional government said that one person was airlifted to hospital with serious burns, while five others were taken to a local hospital for the effects of smoke inhalation.

Ten more were treated at the circuit's medical centre.

The Caterham team said four of their mechanics were among those taken to the medical centre, one with a minor hand injury and three for smoke inhalation.

On the track, Maldonado held off a challenge by two-time champion Fernando Alonso of Ferrari to win, while Australian Mark Webber finished out of the points in 11th.

"It's a wonderful day for me and the team. An unforgettable race," said Maldonado, who was hoisted onto the shoulders of Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen, who finished third, when the drivers appeared on the podium.

Driving with huge self-control, the Venezuelan produced a flawless race for the Williams team, delivering their first win since Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya won in Brazil eight years ago.

Maldonado had also become the first driver from his country to take a pole position when he was elevated from second place on the grid on Saturday evening, following Lewis Hamilton's disqualification for fuel irregularities.

Maldonado drove with great composure in the closing stages to make the most of his team's clever strategy by holding off two-time champion and local hero Alonso.

"After last year, we have worked and worked, and pushed so hard, and I knew this was going to be a tough race, but to have my first podium and my first win - you can just imagine the emotions," said the winner.

Raikkonen was third for Lotus while teammate Romain Grosjean came home fourth ahead of fifth-place Kamui Kobayashi of Sauber and defending double world champion Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull.

A late charge by Vettel enabled him to rise to sixth by passing fellow German Nico Rosberg, who was seventh for Mercedes, and Hamilton, who also drove superbly to rise from 24th and last on the grid to finish eighth.

Hamilton's McLaren team-mate and compatriot Jenson Button came home ninth and Nico Hulkenberg was 10th for Force India on a day when Maldonado became the fifth different winner in five races so far this year; the first time this has happened since 1983.

Vettel's late push enabled him to maintain his position at the top of the drivers' standings, where he shares the lead, on 61 points, with Alonso, eight points ahead of Hamilton.

In the constructors' championship, Red Bull stayed out in front with 109 points, ahead of McLaren on 98.


First season win for BMW at Lausitz


BMW didn’t have to wait long for its maiden win after the brand’s return to the DTM: having started from pole position, Canadian Bruno Spengler won the 52 laps long second round of the 2012 DTM season at Lausitzring with his BMW M3 DTM. Gary Paffett (Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) claimed second place behind Spengler. At the finish line, Paffett was 1.019 seconds down on the race winner. With Augusto Farfus in third place, another BMW driver rounded out the podium.


A 1-2 for Mercedes-Benz in 2012 DTM season opener


The motorsport fans have the DTM fever and built a record crowd for the season opener: 142,000 spectators wanted to be there for the start into the new era of the DTM during the race weekend at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg. On the Sunday of the race alone, 71,000 spectators celebrated the three-way battle between the premium manufacturers Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz and race winner Gary Paffett (GB). The 31-year old Mercedes-Benz driver survived the turmoil after the start and after great duels, he crossed the finish line to finish first from his fellow Mercedes-Benz drivers and compatriot Jamie Green. Paffett said about his 18th race win in the DTM: “Last year was really bad for me. Nevertheless, I didn’t lose my self-confidence. Great, the way it has started now. At the start, I managed to stay out of traffic and the duel with Jamie was really fair.” Mercedes-Benz scored its sixth consecutive race win at Hockenheim.




Rosberg takes pole in China.

Rosberg takes pole in China with awesome lap. Schumi will start second. We hope for a better race than the now.

Alonso wins in Malaysia




Pamela Anderson Racing


It's funny how a couple of letters can change the meaning of a word entirely. Take "racy" and "racing," for example. One implies a certain charge of sexuality, while the other refers to the competition of getting from Point A to Point B the quickest. Pamela Anderson, for example, would be one we'd categorize under the former, but now the Canadian model/actress/bombshell is breaking into the latter by launching her own racing team.

Downforce1 by Pamela Anderson is the name of the new team that will be fielding an Aston Martin Vantage GTE in both the (European) Le Mans Series and the International GT Open, wearing white and blue livery with the glamour model's signature and bearing the logos of PETA (the animal rights group for which Anderson is a spokesperson) and ICM (the talent agency that manages her career). The team is apparently being managed by a Swiss outfit with ten years of experience in GT racing.

This is not the first time we've seen a model lending her image to a racing team: Paris Hilton was connected to a MotoGP squad a couple of years back, and now Pam appears to be following in her high-heeled footsteps. And apparently she's not stopping at GT racing, either, as the effort could spawn a NASCAR team as well. In the meantime, Anderson hopes to be present at as many of the races as her schedule will allow. Which ought to be plenty distracting for the racers.

So what is it about models like Pam headlining racing teams? Beyond the usual barrage of innuendos – the airbags have, after all, been removed – maybe the former Baywatch starlet herself put it best in a recent interview with British tabloid The Sun: "Fast cars and fast women go together." Who are we to argue?