D'Aste Takes Surprise Spa Win

Independent runner Stefano D'Aste took an incredible win in the second World Touring Car race at Spa - as the leading four drivers took themselves out of the running on the penultimate corner

D'Aste Takes Surprise Spa Win

BMW driver D'Aste, who started 17th, inherited the win after Fabrizio Giovanardi, Gabriele Tarquini, Antonio Garcia, and Dirk Muller were all involved in a bizarre accident through the Bus Stop chicane on the last lap.

Garcia tapped Tarquini while approaching the Bus Stop, which pitched the Alfa Romeo driver into Dirk Muller's BMW. Muller then slid round and back into Tarquini, who in turn again hit Garcia. The trio then lost control and spun simultaneously into the chicane.

Giovanardi, who led into the corner and had looked comfortable for the win, failed to make it though the exit cleanly, having to avoid the spinning Tarquini in front of him.

All this meant that D'Aste, who had his own share of last-lap drama, having gone off on the wet grass at top speed at Les Combes, was able to inherit a remarkable victory.

Giovanardi, who had led the entire race until the crash, managed to struggle home second ahead of Tom Coronel and Augusto Farfus Jr. Muller scrambled home fifth with Garcia eighth. Tarquini retired.

D'Aste was stunned at the victory. He said: "It is not often an independent driver wins a World Championship event. This was a big weekend for us, we had done lots of work after BMW gave us a new engine."

The controversial last lap accident wasn't the only one in the race, which had suffered a wet downpour moments before the start.

The leading cars had been so close on that final lap because of a safety car period brought out for an accident between Thomas Klenke and Jordi Gene at the bus stop. Nicola Larini nudged Klenke into a spin on the run down to the chicane, pushing the Focus driver onto the wet grass. Unable to slow down, he smashed into the innocent Gene at the chicane spilling debris over the track.

Race one leaders Dirk Muller and Andy Priaulx touched on the run down to Eau Rouge just after the start. The collision pitched Dirk Muller into Farfus Jr. The pair had a frightening spin infront of the pack at Eau Rouge however, they both managed to avoid the field. However too much damage was done to Priaulx's suspension in the accident to continue.


Pos  Driver               Make                 Time
 1.  Stefano D'Aste       BMW 320i             27:46.760
 2.  Fabrizio Giovanardi  Alfa Romeo 156       +   2.997
 3.  Tom Coronel          Seat Toledo Cupra    +   4.368
 4.  Augusto Farfus Jr.   Alfa Romeo 156       +   4.920
 5.  Dirk Muller          BMW 320i             +   7.047
 6.  Alain Menu           Chevrolet Lacetti    +  10.616
 7.  James Thompson       Alfa Romeo 156       +  12.804
 8.  Antonio Garcia       BMW 320i             +  13.066
 9.  Marc Hennerici       BMW 320i             +  13.575
10.  Peter Terting        SEAT Toledo Cupra    +  17.203
11.  Robert Huff          Chevrolet Lacetti    +  17.626
12.  Carl Rosenblad       BMW 320i             +  18.205
13.  Adam Lacko           BMW 320i             +  18.631
14.  Jason Plato          SEAT Toledo Cupra    +  20.594
15.  Giuseppe Ciro        BMW 320i             +  21.702
16.  Jorg Muller          BMW 320i             +  46.974
17.  Gabriele Tarquini    Alfa Romeo 156       +  1 Lap
18.  Nicola Larini        Chevrolet Lacetti    +  1 Lap


     Driver               Make                  On Lap
     Roberto Colciago     Honda Accord Euro R     4
     Jordi Gene           SEAT Toledo Cupra       3
     Thomas Klenke        Ford Focus              3
     Valle Makela         Seat Toledo Cupra       1
     Rickard Rydell       SEAT Toledo Cupra       0
     Soheil Ayari         Peugeot 407             0
     Andy Priaulx         BMW 320i                0
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