Zandvoort DTM: Edoardo Mortara takes epic victory

Edoardo Mortara took his second DTM victory of the year with a brilliant drive in a Zandvoort race that was as thrilling as it was chaotic

Zandvoort DTM: Edoardo Mortara takes epic victory

Championship leader Gary Paffett, meanwhile, was spun around by Martin Tomczyk during a mid-race burst of rain and finished behind his title rivals Jamie Green and Bruno Spengler as a result.

Mortara followed Mike Rockenfeller's Phoenix A5 during the opening stint of the race; both taking advantage of polesitter Timo Scheider stalling on the line and falling into the pack.

But the Italian's decision to make his first tyre change two laps before his German rival almost paid off, Rockenfeller sticking resolutely to the inside of the track at Tarzan after exiting the pits to hang on to his advantage.

However, following the second stops, a brief rain shower turned the race on its head as Rockenfeller - who had built up a four-second lead - lapped as many as 2s slower than his rival on three successive laps.

Mortara made his move for the lead at Tarzan on lap 32, making slight contact with Rockenfeller as they ran side-by-side briefly. Despite Rockenfeller remaining close as the track dried out, he could not pass the Rosberg car.

Mattias Ekstrom completed the all-Audi podium in his Abt car with Jamie Green fourth.

Green's HWA Mercedes appeared to be the fastest car on race pace during the early stages, but a pair of slow pitstops dropped him gradually from fourth to 11th. Some quick laps during the rain were the catalyst for his recovery.

Adrien Tambay dealt with a twitchy-looking Abt Audi to claim his best DTM finish in fifth place while BMW's Bruno Spengler kept up his title hopes with a great recovery to sixth from 18th on the grid.

Paffett, up from eighth on the grid, was later spun out of third spot during the rain; his HWA Mercedes slewing to the right under braking for Tarzan after a lock-up, and then acting as a brake for Martin Tomczyk's RMG BMW as he too struggled to slow down for the corner.

Tomczyk retired with the damage he sustained while Filipe Albuquerque, Andy Priaulx and Augusto Farfus all had to go off the track to avoid the spun Mercedes.

After resuming, Paffett was the fastest man on track in the damp and quickly climbed back into the top 10. He passed Dirk Werner, Ralf Schumacher and Augusto Farfus in the final five laps to finish seventh and remain 16 points ahead of Green in the standings with three races to go.

Werner overtook Schumacher and Farfus with a lap-and-a-half to go, with the German and the Brazilian completing the top 10.

Scheider did not make the finish, the German hitting the back of David Coulthard's Mucke Mercedes early on and then stopping when his damaged bonnet flew up and blocked his windscreen.

Robert Wickens and Miguel Molina collided twice on the run to the first corner; the Spaniard ending up beached in the gravel at Tarzan, while the Canadian was spun by Christian Vietoris two turns later and collected within seconds by the unsighted Rahel Frey. All three retired.

Results - 43 laps: Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap 1. Edoardo Mortara Rosberg Audi 1h16m17.679s 2. Mike Rockenfeller Phoenix Audi + 1.513s 3. Mattias Ekstrom Abt Audi + 8.417s 4. Jamie Green HWA Mercedes + 13.283s 5. Adrien Tambay Abt Audi + 21.313s 6. Bruno Spengler Schnitzer BMW + 26.397s 7. Gary Paffett HWA Mercedes + 33.791s 8. Dirk Werner Schnitzer BMW + 33.923s 9. Augusto Farfus RBM BMW + 34.706s 10. Ralf Schumacher HWA Mercedes + 36.380s 11. Roberto Merhi Persson Mercedes + 36.771s 12. Susie Wolff Persson Mercedes + 43.135s 13. Andy Priaulx RBM BMW + 53.127s 14. Joey Hand RMG BMW + 1 lap Retirements: Filipe Albuquerque Rosberg Audi 34 laps Martin Tomczyk RMG BMW 28 laps David Coulthard Mucke Mercedes 22 laps Timo Scheider Abt Audi 6 laps Christian Vietoris HWA Mercedes 1 lap Miguel Molina Phoenix Audi 0 laps Robert Wickens Mucke Mercedes 0 laps Rahel Frey Abt Audi 0 laps 
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Series DTM
Drivers Edoardo Mortara
Author Jamie O'Leary
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