Well what a weekend that was at Oschersleben. After 2 races at Moscow, which in all honesty provided little in terms of overall excitement, rounds 13 and 14 of the 2015 DTM championship offered up everything Touring Car fans have come to love the DTM for, and even a little bit more for good measure. Brilliant overtaking from Jamie Green kept his faltering championship hopes alive (just) whilst impressive consistency saw Pascal Wehrlein take, and then extend his lead in the championship to 14 points over a bitterly disappointed Ekstrom.
In the midst of all these highlights however, we were unanimous in agreement at thehairpincorner that the real stars of the show were two comparably young and inexperienced drivers, aged just 24 and 21, who are beginning to show real signs of their coming of age in the DTM. Antonio Felix da Costa, and race 2 winner, Tom Blomqvist.
After scoring 6 points and finishing 21st in 2014, da Costa’s remarkable turnaround has been one of the personal highlights of the current season. After taking his maiden DTM victory at Zandvoort, da Costa has been much improved in recent races and a 3rd and 4th place at the weekend cemented his position in the championship’s top ten. Considering some of the DTM veterans who find themselves below da Costa – Di Resta, Tomcyzk and Scheider to name but a few, that feat becomes even more impressive. With two rounds left on this year’s calendar da Costa still has everything to play for, and another good weekend for BMW at either the Nurburgring or Hockenheim, the young Portuguese star could find himself even further up the table (after all, he is only 4 points behind 7th placed Paffett).
Tom Blomqvist take a bow, for driving what must have been one of the most assured, mature and confident races we’ve seen any rookie drive for a long, long time. From the moment he lead the slow starting Farfus into turn one, until the very last lap Blomqvist looked like he had spent numerous seasons behind the wheel of the BMW M4 DTM. Even an early safety car did nothing to rattle his nerves and an assured restart saw him again put ground between himself and Farfus. Up until his maiden victory, performances this season had hardly set the world alight, with BMW’s struggles at many of the circuits this year certainly not helping Blomqvist find his feet. With only 2 points finishes prior to Oschersleben you could have been forgiven for thinking his seat at BMW Team RBM could be in doubt for 2016, but after such a mature drive from the 21 year old, those doubts can be aside for at least another season.
In a season where many of the DTM’s veterans and past champions are struggling to find their feet, a new guard of drivers are beginning to knock on the door and appear on the radar of the leading Manufacturer team’s. And if last weekends performances are anything to go by, the future of BMW at least, is in very safe hands indeed.