After qualifying on the second row for the first race of the Assen round, Habsburg knew he’d have a fight on his hands to keep the world’s best racing drivers at bay in only his first season in the Audi. Focused and raring to go, he performed a fantastic start to climb to second place. The 22-year old struggled however to hold off the much more experienced competitors and, despite some good defending and battling, he had to settle for P8.
“Of course, I was pleased with my qualifying – everything came together and I felt like I had a chance to show what I’m capable of… and that my last fourth place grid start wasn’t a fluke!” he commented. “The race was tough but I can’t be disheartened when you look at the drivers who passed me – they are the masters of DTM. I need to just stay focused, keep pushing and learn from them. The toughest races are where we learn the most.”
On Sunday, the skies opened and the rain fell so the 16 DTM cars completed two laps behind the safety car before a traditional standing start. It’s no secret that Habsburg loves racing in the rain so no surprise that he climbed from seventh up to fourth at the start before crossing the line back in his starting position.
“That was crazy out there,” he said. “Once again, I found myself in the top four and with the pack of wolves behind me. Yes, it was tough, but I had a lot of fun and I’m pleased with some of my moves. I’ll be honest, I think seventh is probably where we deserve to be as a package right now but we are showing glimpses of our potential.
“I’ve really got to hand it to my team at WRT Audi Sport, especially for the pit stops. We’ve taken huge strides since Lausitzring. In fact, we were the fastest pit stop in race two, which is a real accolade in DTM – we’re working hard together to gel as a real team and we’re starting to reap the rewards. I can’t wait to get to the Nürburgring – last time I was there for pre-season testing I set the new DTM lap record so now we have to do it when it counts.”
The fifth round of the 2020 DTM season takes place at the Nürburgring on 11-13 September.