Kiwi Lawson grabs victory in DTM

Photo Credit: Red Bull Content Pool

11 July 2021

Albon fourth for Red Bull AlphaTauri AF Corse as team leads after Sunday.

Red Bull AlphaTauri AF Corse made an excellent start to the 2021 DTM season thanks to Liam Lawson’s Saturday debut victory and a fourth place for Alex Albon in Race One at Monza. Here is all you need to know:

– Monza’s Royal Park hosted the DTM for the first time in its history and is the home event for the Italian-based Red Bull AlphaTauri AF Corse team as F2 driver Lawson and F1 driver Albon jumped over from other series.

– After the switch from Class One regulations to GT3 race cars, the entry list for Monza included cars from five manufacturers – and two Ferraris, for the first time in the history of the series.

– In Saturday’s Race One, 19-year-old New Zealander Lawson highlighted his immense talent with victory over Mercedes-AMG Team HRT duo Vincent Abril (MON) and Maximilian Götz (GER) to make it a debut win in nine out of the 10 cars that he has raced during his motorsport career.

– After the morning’s qualifying session, not everybody might have bet on Lawson however – starting from seventh – the DTM rookie gave a stunning performance in his #30 Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020.

– This was compounded by the perfect work of the Red Bull AlphaTauri AF Corse team at the pit stop, after which Lawson was unchallenged with Thailand’s Albon also managing to shine thanks to a strong recovery in his #23 AlphaTauri Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020 after starting 14th on the grid.

– Lawson said: “It’s such a fantastic feeling to get the win! I am over the moon. We had a nice start. I gained one or two spots off the line, which was good. We kind of knew that qualifying wasn’t our true pace. In the early stages of the race I could not overtake so I waited until the earliest possible point for the pit stop. That was perfect, the guys really nailed the pit stop, so a big thank you to the team, and when I had clear air after the stop, the car was really fast.”

– Albon, 25, added: “We had the pace all weekend but qualifying was pretty disappointing. It was so close out there and we ended up in P14. The race itself was really good. P14 to P4 – we obviously have to be really happy with that. First and foremost a big credit to the team. Just look at the pit stops they did; that was incredible. That helped us a lot. We also had some nice overtakes ,which was fun. Congratulations to Liam; he had a great race.”

– Sunday’s Race Two saw Albon start from 12th place on the grid and finish in seventh position with Lawson in 14th place after he span early starting from second, which saw him slip down the field.

– Lawson came up trumps again in Sunday qualifying despite carrying an extra success ballast of 25 kilograms, missing out on pole in his #30 Ferrari 488 GT3 Evo 2020 by just a few hundredths of a second.

– Lawson sits in second place in the drivers standings with 27 points and Albon fifth with 18 points as Red Bull AlphaTauri AF Corse lead the teams’ standings with 45 points ahead of the second event of the season in the DTM 2021 from July 23-25 at the Lausitzring in Germany.

– Albon said: “It wasn’t an easy weekend for me on my side of the garage. On Saturday we had an issue that we fixed for Sunday but unfortunately I had a bit of traffic in qualifying, so it was kind of damage limitation in both races due to my qualifying positions. We have some things to work on but it was my first race weekend so I am still learning the car and the championship but overall it has been a successful debut for us with Liam’s victory.”

– Lawson added: “I think the weekend was pretty positive and we showed a good pace to start the year. However, with the 25 kilos success ballast it was just horrendous to drive. Anyway, it was a positive weekend and for the first round, I did not expect to come home with a win and we had no idea how fast we would be either, so the speed and yesterday’s result was pretty positive.”

– AF Corse owner Amato Ferrari declared: “It was a fantastic and positive start. Yesterday was amazing. Of course, we did not feel very competitive with the new balance of performance with the extra kilos but it is part of the game and the race organisers still have to get to know the cars better because it was the first weekend with the GT3 and now they have a lot of data to analyse in order to find a good BoP for the next round.”

Race One result
1st Liam Lawson (NZL) – Red Bull AlphaTauri AF Corse
2nd Vincent Abril (MON) – Mercedes-AMG Team HRT
3rd Maximilian Götz (GER) – Mercedes-AMG Team HRT
4th Alex Albon (THA) – Red Bull AlphaTauri AF Corse
5th Daniel Juncadella (ESP) – Mercedes-AMG Team GruppeM Racing

Race Two selected results
1st Kelvin van der Linde (RSA) – Team Abt Sportsline
2nd Nico Müller (SUI) – Team Rosberg
3rd Lucas Auer (AUT) – Mercedes-AMG Team Winward
4th Sheldon van der Linde (RSA) – ROWE Racing
5th Marco Wittmann (GER) – Walkenhorst Motorsport
7th Alex Albon (THA) – Red Bull AlphaTauri AF Corse
14th Liam Lawson (NZL) – Red Bull AlphaTauri AF Corse

Key Facts DTM Monza
Round: 2021 DTM Season Opener
Date: June 18-20, 2021
City: Monza (ITA)
Track: Autodromo Nazionale di Monza
Track length: 5.793 km