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DATE News (chronologically)
10/21/12
dtm
Bruno Spengler claims DTM championship crown with victory
[DTM Press Release] Bruno Spengler (BMW) is the 2012 DTM champion. In a thrilling season finale at the Hockenheimring Baden-Wurttemberg, he claimed victory in the race after 42 laps and thus claimed the DTM championship crown for the first time in his career. Gary Paffett (Mercedes-Benz), who had led the drivers’ standings prior to the finale, finished second behind Spengler and is runner-up. Eventually, Paffett (145 points) was four points down on the Franco-Canadian (149 points). Augusto Farfus (BMW), who started the race from pole position, finished third at Hockenheim.

Bruno Spengler crowns a perfect season for DTM returnee BMW. In the final race of the year, the 29-year old Canadian beat his opponent Gary Paffett (Mercedes-Benz), who had been leading the drivers’ standings since the season opener, but had to make do with second place in the finale. After 42 laps, Spengler crossed the finish line at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg as the happy winner and the 2012 DTM champion. “I can’t believe it, I can’t believe it,” he shouted into his radio, and then sung out loud: “We are the champions”. Having got out of his BMW M3 DTM, Spengler described his feelings: “This is a sensational day and a perfect season. My team is great, and I thank everybody who has supported me. Now, it is time to celebrate, a great day.”

Gary Paffett lost against Spengler at the start, but moved up into second place at the first pit stop and put the BMW driver under massive pressure over many laps. However, he didn’t manage to overtake. Eventually, he was 2.2 seconds down on Spengler. “The entire year has been very good and I was in the lead of the points’ standings. Still losing it is tragic. I haven’t made any mistakes throughout the season, and at the finale, of all things, I make a mistake. I am very disappointed,” said Paffett, who was annoyed about the missed opportunity to become DTM champion for the second time after 2005.

Spengler’s fellow BMW driver Augusto Farfus from Brazil, who had started from pole position, finished third from Jamie Green (Mercedes-Benz), who ended up third in the final drivers’ standings. In sixth position, Italian Edoardo Mortara was the best-placed Audi driver in the 2012 DTM finale. “This was one of the toughest and most demanding races of my career. I am happy that the Team Rosberg managed to end the season as the best Audi team with this result,” said Mortara. In the overall standings, Mike Rockenfeller is fourth as the best-placed Audi driver. Susie Wolff (Mercedes-Benz) bowed out of the DTM with a 13th place. Her compatriot and fellow Mercedes-Benz driver David Coulthard retired from his final DTM race.

The results in the manufacturers’ standings also reflect the strong performance by BMW in its maiden season. Here, the Bavarians won from Audi and Mercedes-Benz. 128,000 spectators attended the weekend of the DTM finale at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg.

The 2012 DTM champion impressed this season with a high level of consistency. In total, Bruno Spengler won four races and scored points in another four races. The Canadian failed to score twice.

Jens Marquardt, BMW Motorsport Director: “What Bruno has achieved, is unique. We just have a great team. The guys have developed a good car. As newcomers, we knew, that we still had to improve at the beginning, and that is what we did. I am very proud of this crew. I also would like to mention everyone involved in the development of the new regulations of the DTM. They have done a tremendous job. The DTM was thrilling as never before and the spectators and the fans are the real winners.”

Norbert Haug, head of motorsport Mercedes-Benz: “A great finale with a fantastic battle between the title candidates Spengler and Paffett – eventually, two seconds were decisive. Congratulations to Bruno and BMW for winning the title. Unfortunately, we have lost points somewhere else. But I believe that Bruno was quite nervous when Gary came up from behind at high speed. We have shown that we are capable of winning.”

Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, head of motorsport Audi: “Congratulations to Bruno Spengler and BMW. In the DTM, everything has to be spot-on when you want to win. And sometimes, you need a little bit of luck, too. We didn’t have that this weekend. We will work even harder during the winter to bring the championship back to Ingolstadt and Neckarsulm next year.”

Results - 42 laps:

Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap
1. Bruno Spengler (CDN) Schnitzer BMW 1h07m59.069s
2. Gary Paffett (GB) HWA Mercedes +2.214s
3. Augusto Farfus (BR) RBM BMW +11.954s
4. Jamie Green (GB) HWA Mercedes +23.479s
5. Dirk Werner (D) Schnitzer BMW +25.384s
6. Edoardo Mortara (I) Rosberg Audi +41.701s
7. Andy Priaulx (GB) RBM BMW +42.265s
8. Joey Hand (USA) RMG BMW +42.843s
9. Ralf Schumacher (D) HWA Mercedes +43.878s
10. Christian Vietoris (D) HWA Mercedes +45.138s
11. Filipe Albuquerque (P) Rosberg Audi +58.232s
12. Timo Scheider (D) Abt Audi +1m14.020s
13. Susie Wolff (GB) Persson Mercedes +1m35.931s
14. Martin Tomczyk (D) RMG BMW +1 lap
15. Roberto Merhi (E) Persson Mercedes +1 lap
16. Rahel Frey (CH) Abt Audi +1 lap
DNF Miguel Molina (E) Phoenix Audi 25 laps
DNF David Coulthard (GB) Mucke Mercedes 23 laps
DNF Robert Wickens (CDN) Mucke Mercedes 20 laps
DNF Mattias Ekstrom (S) Abt Audi 11 laps
DNF Mike Rockenfeller (D) Phoenix Audi 2 laps
DNF Adrien Tambay (F) Abt Audi 1 lap

Championship:

1 Spengler 149, 2 Paffett 145, 3 Green 121, 4 Rockenfeller 85, 5 Mortara 82, 6 Ekstrom 81, 7 Farfus 69, 8 Tomczyk 69, 9 Werner 29, 10 Tambay 28

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