Pole position, fastest race lap and victory: in the first race of the 2022 DTM Trophy, Tim Heinemann demonstrated his skills in an impressive way. The German, racing for the Toyota Gazoo Racing Germany powered by Ring Racing team in the talent pool on the DTM platform this year, left the opposition without a chance in the season-opening race at Lausitzring Turn 1 powered by Autohero.
Brazilian Audi driver Thiago Vivacqua (Heide-Motorsport), a newcomer on the professional DTM platform this year, finished in second place after 19 laps, 3.053 seconds down. Vivacqua’s American fellow Audi driver J.P. Southern (T3 Motorsport) rounded out the podium after finishing third.
Victory for Heinemann, the inaugural DTM Trophy champion in 2020, was threatened only once: at the start, Vivacqua pulled alongside the red-and-white Toyota Supra and even was slightly in front going into the demanding banked corner Turn 1. However, Heinemann was on the better line and eventually came out in front. After that, the Toyota driver built up a slight advantage of up to two seconds that he then defended in a commanding way. Vivacqua temporarily set the fastest lap time, but Heinemann immediately responded.
Southern secured an undisputed third place while spectacular battles were going on for the following positions, in which Aston Martin driver Nick Hancke (GER, Speed Monkeys) eventually came out on top. He crowned his successful recovery drive that saw him move up from 13th on the grid to fourth at the finish. Mercedes-AMG driver Rodrigo Dias Almeida (BWT Mücke Motorsport) from Mozambique took the chequered flag in fifth place.
Losing out in the hunting pack was Porsche driver Ricky Capo (KÜS Team Bernhard). The Australian initially ran in fourth place, but dropped back to seventh after some intense battles. Ahead of him, the best-placed BMW driver, German Theo Oeverhaus (Walkenhorst Motorsport), crossed the finish line. As a result, all six brands in the field were represented among the first seven positions, underlining how extremely well-balanced the DTM Trophy with production-based GT sports cars is.
Almeida’s French teammate Edouard Cauhaupé finished eighth ahead of Southern’s stablemate Matias Salonen from Finland. Spaniard Marc de Fulgencio (FK Performance Motorsport) scored the final championship point by finishing tenth with his BMW.
This year, there is a female racer on the grid in DTM Trophy again: at the finish, German Audi driver Sophie Hofmann (Heide-Motorsport) was 39.568 seconds down on Heinemann, equalling 15th position.
The second race of the 2022 DTM Trophy at Lausitzring Turn 1 powered by Autohero will be held on Sunday afternoon, starting at 3.15pm CEST.