Jordan King put in a measured drive to wrap up the British Formula 3 title with a race to spare in the second race of the Nurburgring finale.
While Carlin driver King gained the necessary points with a fifth-place finish, it was all-action around him as Felipe Guimaraes pipped Spike Goddard to the flag thanks to a last-corner dive on the final lap.
Australian Goddard converted his reversed-grid pole position into a comfortable lead in T-Sport's ThreeBond/Nissan-powered Dallara, while Guimaraes had to fight his way through from sixth on the grid.
He did a good job picking his way up to third, and then passed Nicholas Latifi for second with an excellent round-the-outside move at Turn 2 on the seventh lap of 16.
By this time Goddard was well out front, but Guimaraes clawed back the deficit.
He tried an outside move into Turn 1 on the final lap, and then slingshotted Goddard, who had a slow puncture in his left-rear tyre, into the final corner to take his second reversed-grid win in his Fortec Motorsport Dallara-Mercedes.
The Brazilian's victory was watched by Alex Ribeiro, his mentor with the Jesus Saves Racing scheme and whose own last race win came in the Formula 2 race at the same venue in 1978.
"I saw that we were fast," said Guimaraes, "and tried as hard as I could to catch him. At the last corner I knew he was not so good on the brakes, so I did a good chicane, got the momentum and got past him.
"Alex won here many years ago, so it's great that I can do the same for Jesus Saves!"
The win went some way to sweetening the Fortec team's misery as Will Buller crashed out, conceding the title to King.
From the back of the grid, a typically feisty drive brought Buller up to fourth place but he went off at the Veedol chicane with just over three laps to go, while trying to catch Tatiana Calderon for third.
Colombian Calderon, who had passed Latifi, therefore completed the podium, with King next up.
"I was just playing my cards," said the new champion. "I was pushing quite hard, but when I saw Will was off I knew I was OK."
Antonio Giovinazzi's title challenge fizzled out with a distant sixth ahead of Sean Gelael. This duo, plus King, moved up a place when Jann Mardenborough spun off and hit the wall.
A fantastic National Class battle resulted in a maiden win for Team West-Tec's New Zealander Chris Vlok.
He repelled all that Sun Zheng's much faster-engined car threw at him and was home free when the Chinese driver had a quick spin with five laps to go.
Results - 16 laps:
Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap
1. Felipe Guimaraes Fortec Dallara-Merc 30m02.871s
2. Spike Goddard T-Sport Dallara-Nissan +0.227s
3. Tatiana Calderon Double R Dallara-Merc +8.814s
4. Nicholas Latifi Carlin Dallara-VW +12.991s
5. Jordan King Carlin Dallara-VW +14.516s
6. Antonio Giovinazzi Double R Dallara-Merc +24.379s
7. Sean Gelael Double R Dallara-Merc +25.737s
8. Alfonso Celis Fortec Dallara-Merc +34.676s
9. Chris Vlok West-Tec Dallara-Toyota +1m00.904s*
10. Sun Zheng CF Dallara-Mugen +1m02.600s*
11. Will Barbosa West-Tec Dallara-Toyota +1m30.146s*
Will Buller Fortec Dallara-Merc 12 laps
Jann Mardenborough Carlin Dallara-VW 9 laps
* National class