Valencia DTM: Augusto Farfus wins, Bruno Spengler gains in points
|By Jamie O'Leary||Sunday, September 30th 2012, 13:20 GMT|
Augusto Farfus dominated at Valencia to take his maiden DTM victory, while Bruno Spengler staged a great recovery to further reduce Gary Paffett's championship lead.
Farfus made a rapid getaway in his RBM BMW from pole position to lead Edoardo Mortara into the first corner.
He then pulled out a five-second lead by the time he made his first of two mandatory pitstops and held his advantage for the remainder of the afternoon to become the first Brazilian to win a DTM race.
Mortara lost an easy second place when his Rosberg Audi ground to a halt with seven laps to go, his retirement promoting Abt team-mates Adrien Tambay and Mattias Ekstrom to second and third. Tambay's podium finish was his first in the DTM.
Filipe Albuquerque, who had run third early on, was passed by Tambay at the first round of pitstops and Ekstrom at the second. He still held off Mike Rockenfeller's Phoenix Audi for fourth.
Sixth, after a remarkable recovery, was Spengler. He fell as low as 15th at one stage after receiving a jumped-start penalty early on.
He latched onto the tail of Rahel Frey following the completion of the pitstops and followed the Audi driver, who was having the best drive of her DTM career, past Dirk Werner for eighth with eight laps left.
Spengler then seized upon a mistake by Andy Priaulx to take both the Briton and Frey in one move at Turn 7 with a few laps left to reduce Paffett's championship lead to just three points with only the final race at Hockenheim remaining.
Priaulx and Frey rubbed bodywork for the following two corners as he hung on to seventh. Race officials decided that this had been unfair and ordered him to let Frey by two laps later.
Frey's seventh spot was her best finish in the DTM. Behind her Priaulx, Werner and Jamie Green completed the top 10.
Green recovered from a drive-through penalty for exceeding track limits to pass fellow Mercedes man David Coulthard on the final lap to keep his title hopes alive at a reduced 18 points behind Paffett with 25 still up for grabs.
Paffett was himself given a two-second stop/go penalty for spinning Joey Hand's BMW on the opening lap. His HWA Mercedes suffered damage in the incident and led to his slow pace for much of the race. He eventually retired.
Also failing to finish were Martin Tomczyk - who spun as a result of a contact from Robert Wickens - and Roberto Merhi, who hit the spinning BMW while trying to avoid it.
Wickens crashed at the same corner two laps later as a result of a right-front puncture while Miguel Molina spun out into the Turn 2 gravel at mid-distance.
Results - 46 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Augusto Farfus RBM BMW 1h08m22.522s 2. Adrien Tambay Abt Audi + 8.406s 3. Mattias Ekstrom Abt Audi + 8.967s 4. Filipe Albuquerque Rosberg Audi + 23.067s 5. Mike Rockenfeller Phoenix Audi + 28.066s 6. Bruno Spengler Schnitzer BMW + 39.831s 7. Rahel Frey Abt Audi + 48.318s 8. Andy Priaulx RBM BMW + 49.562s 9. Dirk Werner Schnitzer BMW + 58.327s 10. Jamie Green HWA Mercedes + 1m10.596s 11. David Coulthard Mucke Mercedes + 1m12.228s 12. Christian Vietoris HWA Mercedes + 1m20.388s 13. Susie Wolff Persson Mercedes + 1 lap 14. Ralf Schumacher HWA Mercedes + 1 lap Retirements: Joey Hand RMG BMW 42 laps Edoardo Mortara Rosberg Audi 38 laps Timo Scheider Abt Audi 29 laps Gary Paffett HWA Mercedes 27 laps Miguel Molina Phoenix Audi 25 laps Robert Wickens Mucke Mercedes 3 laps Roberto Merhi Persson Mercedes 1 lap Martin Tomczyk RMG BMW 0 laps