Edoardo Mortara has converted his maiden DTM pole position into his first series win, which was also Audi’s first victory under the championship new technical regulations.
The Italian resisted race long pressure from last year’s winner and defending series champion Martin Tomczyk, as well as this year’s runaway points leader Gary Paffett.
Mortara led off the line and controlled the race before and after the first of the day’s two compulsory pit stops.
The youngster made his second stop on Lap 30, exiting the pits fractionally ahead of the fast-closing Paffett, who had made his stop just a lap earlier. Paffett used his better momentum to lunge up the inside of Mortara as the pair braked for the Remus Kurve, but Mortara vigorously defended the inside line, forcing Paffett to drop his inside wheels onto the grass in avoidance.
Tomczyk pitted at the end of that lap and emerged from the pits ahead of the battling Mortara and Paffett, but Mortara managed to execute the overtaking move that Paffett couldn’t, squeezing by Tomczyk at Remus.
Tomczyk tried to counter-attack at the very next corner, but got the wobbles under braking and tagged the rear of Mortara. His loss of momentum left him vulnerable to Paffett, and he spent the next sequence of corners trying to keep Paffett at bay.
That was all the invitation that Mortara needed to ensure his lead, which he kept until the chequered flag was unfurled. The shenanigans in the closing laps allowed Mattias Ekström and Jamie Green to close, and they shadowed the top-three across the finish line to complete the top-five.
Timo Scheider finished a tremendous sixth in his Audi, despite being punted to last place after a tangle with Augusto Farfus’ BMW early in the proceedings. The German headed home fellow Audi runners Mike Rockenfeller and Filipe Albuquerque to ensure five Audis finished in the top eight.
BMW runners Joey Hand and Farfus completed the top ten, with Hand losing three places in the closing laps but still claiming his first points’ finish in his rookie DTM season.
The other main feature of the race was – rather predictably – its chaotic opening lap, which saw no less than four runners eliminated before the end of the first tour.
It was all triggered by Adrien Tambay, who was forced onto the grass as the pack approached the Remus Kurve on the opening lap. The Frenchman’s out of control Audi ploughed into a group of other cars, including the BMWs of Andy Priaulx, Dirk Werner and Bruno Spengler, along with the Mercedes of Christian Vietoris and the Audi of Miguel Molina.
The series now takes a three-week break before heading to the city of Nuremburg to compete at the Norisring street circuit.
2012 DTM Race of Red Bull Ring – Final Standings (47 laps):
|DRIVER||TEAM / ENTRY||LAPS||RESULT|
|1.||Edoardo Mortara||Team Rosberg Audi||47||1:12:30.277|
|2.||Martin Tomczyk||Team RMG BMW||47||+ 1.068|
|3.||Gary Paffett||HWA Team Mercedes||47||+ 2.142|
|4.||Mattias Ekström||Abt Sportsline Audi||47||+ 2.769|
|5.||Jamie Green||HWA Team Mercedes||47||+ 5.406|
|6.||Timo Scheider||Abt Sportsline Audi||47||+ 35.351|
|7.||Mike Rockenfeller||Phoenix Racing Audi||47||+ 37.260|
|8.||Filipe Albuquerque||Team Rosberg Audi||47||+ 38.062|
|9.||Joey Hand||Team RMG BMW||47||+ 39.419|
|10.||Augusto Farfus Jr||Team RBM BMW||47||+ 39.904|
|11.||Ralf Schumacher||HWA Team Mercedes||47||+ 43.567|
|12.||Roberto Merhi||Persson Motorsport Mercedes||47||+ 50.339|
|13.||Robert Wickens||Mücke Motorsport Mercedes||47||+ 1:05.670|
|14.||Susie Wolff||Persson Motorsport Mercedes||47||+ 1:06.161|
|15.||Rahel Frey||Audi Sport Team Abt||47||+ 1:06.988|
|DNF.||Bruno Spengler||Team Schnitzer BMW||33||Damage|
|DNF.||David Coulthard||Mücke Motorsport Mercedes||22||Brakes|
|DNF.||Miguel Molina||Phoenix Racing Audi||17||Damage|
|DNF.||Andy Priaulx||Team RBM BMW||1||Collision|
|DNF.||Dirk Werner||Team Schnitzer BMW||1||Collision|
|DNF.||Christian Vietoris||HWA Team Mercedes||0||Collision|
|DNF.||Adrien Tambay||Audi Sport Team Abt||0||Collision|