Audi Sport Team Rosberg’s Filipe Albuquerque set the quickest time in the opening free practice session for the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters at the Nürburgring, lapping 0.390 seconds quicker than Mattias Ekström.
With the track getting faster as the session went on and bathin in 25 degree sunshine, Portugese racer Albuquerque was able to set his best time in the closing minutes of the session to knock fellow Audi driver Mike Rockenfeller off the top by 0.539 seconds. Ekström then put his Abt Sprotsline Audi second fastest, but was unable to get near Albuquerque’s time.
Audi drivers locked out five of the top six positions, with only Mercedes’ Jamie Green breaking things up in fourth. Spaniard Miguel Molina and Frenchman Adrien Tambay followed in fifth and sixth respectively.
Current championship leader Gary Paffett was seventh fastest for Mercedes, ahead of Audi Sport Team Rosberg’s Edoardo Mortara.
BMW had a difficult session, with Schnitzer’s Dirk Werner the fastest M3 driver in ninth and the only BMW pilot to break into the top ten. Ralf Schumacher completed the top ten for Mercedes.
Swiss racer Rahel Frey had a competitive session as she set the 11th fastest time for Audi, producing her strongest practice performance of the season so far.
Brits Andy Priaulx, Susie Wolff and David Coulthard finished the session in 14th, 17th and 19th respectively.
The top 14 drivers were all covered by less than a second.