Bruno Spengler has claimed BMW's first DTM win in 20 years

In just its second race since its return to DTM competition after a twenty-year absence, BMW has won its first race, courtesy of a brilliant drive by Lausitzring pole-sitter Bruno Spengler.

Spengler converted his pole position on the sprint down to Turn 1, while championship leader Gary Paffett was able to move into second place from his second-row starting position to give chase to the Canadian.

The quickly began to pull away from the chasing pack, although they were never separated by more than 1.5 seconds as the both rounds of pit stops approached.

Despite Paffett’s HWA Mercedes team performing quicker pit stops than Spengler’s Schnitzer BMW pit crew, Spengler was still able to keep his lead over the Englishman.

The final phase of the race was an exciting duel between Spengler and Paffett, with the pair running nose-to-tail for the final 16 laps of the race.

Spengler held off Paffett's constant challenge for the leadPaffett was unable to find a way past his rival, and a mistake on the final lap ensured that Spengler would stoke his way home to claim his tenth championship win and the first for BMW since their final championship season in 1992.

The final podium spot went to front-row starter Augusto Farfus in his RBM BMW, with the Brazilian earning his first-ever DTM podium by managing to resist the attentions of Jamie Green’s Mercedes.

Starting from sixth place, Green passed Edoardo Mortara on the ninth lap to move into fourth place, and then used his long first stint to get some clear track, which helped him move right up to the back of Farfus.

But his hopes of claiming third place went with a sticking wheelnut in his final pit stop, consigning him to fourth place. No matter what tricks he tried, he was unable to find a way by Farfus.

Fifth and sixth were the Abt Sportsline Audi pairing of Mattias Ekström and Timo Scheider, with the latter implementing the same long first stint strategy that had helped him net a podium last year. This time around, he could only finish sixth, but it was a significant improvement on his twelfth-placed grid position.

Finishing seventh, defending champion Martin Tomczyk claimed his first points of the season following his off-season switch to BMW. He was followed over the line by the Rosberg pairing of Mortara and Filipe Albuquerque.

After a disastrous qualifying session where he could only manage 17th on the grid, Ralf Schumacher snuck through to claim the final points position, assisted pit stop troubles for Mike Rockenfeller and by the late race retirement of DTM rookie Robert Wickens.

The series now decamps and heads to the UK for its only offshore event at Brands Hatch in two weeks time.

2012 DTM Race of Lausitz – Final Standings (52 laps):

1. Bruno Spengler CAN Team Schnitzer BMW BMW 52 1:09:45.795
2. Gary Paffett GBR HWA Team Mercedes Mercedes 52 + 1.019
3. Augusto Farfus Jr BRA Team RBM BMW BMW 52 + 7.069
4. Jamie Green GBR HWA Team Mercedes Mercedes 52 + 7.676
5. Mattias Ekström SWE Abt Sportsline Audi Audi 52 + 21.362
6. Timo Scheider DEU Abt Sportsline Audi Audi 52 + 22.607
7. Martin Tomczyk DEU Team RMG BMW BMW 52 + 25.446
8. Edoardo Mortara ITA Team Rosberg Audi Audi 52 + 32.202
9. Filipe Albuquerque POR Team Rosberg Audi Audi 52 + 32.658
10. Ralf Schumacher DEU HWA Team Mercedes Mercedes 52 + 35.513
11. Christian Vietoris DEU HWA Team Mercedes Mercedes 52 + 45.699
12. David Coulthard GBR Mücke Motorsport Mercedes Mercedes 52 + 46.355
13. Mike Rockenfeller DEU Phoenix Racing Audi Audi 52 + 47.667
14. Joey Hand USA Team RMG BMW BMW 52 + 48.034
15. Miguel Molina ESP Phoenix Racing Audi Audi 52 + 48.836
16. Robert Merhi ESP Persson Motorsport Mercedes Mercedes 52 + 56.454
17. Andy Priaulx GBR Team RBM BMW BMW 52 + 58.984
18. Adrien Tambay FRA Audi Sport Team Abt Audi 52 + 1:04.646
19. Dirk Werner DEU Team Schnitzer BMW BMW 52 + 1:05.201
20. Rahel Frey SUI Audi Sport Team Abt Audi 52 + 1:08.570
21. Susie Wolff GBR Persson Motorsport Mercedes Mercedes 51 1 lap behind
DNF. Robert Wickens CAN Mücke Motorsport Mercedes Mercedes 47 Mechanical

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.