Photo: Audi Mediacenter

Jamie Green: “I think the stewards were too harsh”

Audi Sport Team Rosberg driver Jamie Green had a competitive return to racing at the Norisring after his appendectomy, qualifying on the front row for Sunday’s race to finish in second place.

The Briton was hit with a five-place grid penalty for speeding under red flag conditions in the qualifying session. “When the red flag came out I returned to the pits and I went too fast, the speed limit is a new rule for this season and I didn’t think of it at the time,” Green told TouringCarTimes.

In the race Green recovered positions quickly and, on lap eight, was already up into third position, attacking BMW’s Philipp Eng at Turn 1 for second place. The Audi driver touched the back of the BMW and the stewards ruled he had to give the position back.

“Yes, there was a very slight touch on the rear of Eng,” the Team Rosberg driver explained. “I don’t think it was anything that I should get penalised for, as he was struggling at that point and I was faster and I touched him, so I don’t think it was a big deal.

“When I got the call on the radio I thought ‘come on, really?’, but it was my second penalty of the day,” added Green.

“I think Eng won the position because he touched me, so I think it’s right he had to give back the position again,” Green told TouringCarTimes. “It wasn’t a super unfair thing, but it wasn’t 100% clean, so the race director made this decision and I think he was right.”

Despite the incident, Green was encouraged after showing a competitive form in his return: “It’s nice to be back racing. When you are in hospital it seems like a long way back, so I think I can be very thankful that, within four weeks, I can be back and on the podium. I missed the pole position today by seven-thousandths of a second and I’m just happy to be competitive again and appreciate to be there in the mix and I’m looking forward to the next one.”