Norisring DTM: Spengler ends two-year victory drought
BMW's Bruno Spengler took a commanding victory in the second DTM race at the Norisring to end a two-year victory drought.
Spengler claimed the lead with a clean run through the first sequence of corners on the opening lap and, despite a brief challenge from Jamie Green in the second half of the race, always appeared in control.
Polesitter Rene Rast made a better getaway than he had by stalling a day earlier, but was still outflanked by fellow Audi drivers Nico Muller and Loic Duval on the run to the first corner.
All three Audis went deeper than necessary at the hairpin, however, allowing Spengler - who had lined up fifth - through into the lead ahead of Muller.
Rast then attempted to go around the outside of Muller at the chicane and appeared to have the position sewn up, only to receive a hit from the race-one polesitter in the second part of the corner that left the championship leader facing the wrong direction.
Muller was able to continue unhindered, and attempted to get back ahead of Spengler in the following laps before he was forced to the pitlane for a drive-through penalty.
Free from the attentions of Muller, Spengler settled into a comfortable lead before serving his pitstop at the end of lap 32 of 70.
Green had pitted from fourth 16 laps prior to that, but cleared Philipp Eng and Robin Frijns during the pitstop phase and spent a handful of laps within a second of Spengler.
But 2012 champion Spengler broke clear of the Audi shortly afterwards and spent the final stages of the race with a five-second buffer back to Green, ultimately clinching his first victory since the series' visit to the Nuremberg street circuit in 2017 by 5.765s.
Frijns held third in the closing stages after overtakes on Duval and Eng, but was caught by Audi stablemate Mike Rockenfeller with around 15 minutes of the race left to run.
The pair spent three laps separated by four tenths, but Rockenfeller got a superior run off the chicane 10 laps before the finish and placed his RS5 on the inside line at the second hairpin to secure the final podium position.
Rockenfeller spent the final laps attempting to chase down Green, but ended up just over a second behind the second-place finisher.
Frijns came home fourth ahead of Eng, who had been on course to finish sixth until Marco Wittmann slowed in the final laps, while Duval had a muted run to sixth after pitting at the end of the opening lap. Rast fought his way back into the points, finishing seventh ahead of Muller.
Timo Glock started 17th after he stopped on track in qualifying but battled to ninth in his Team RMR BMW, despite being passed by both Rast and Muller in the second half of the race.
Wittmann's late retirement promoted the R-Motorsport Aston Martin Vantage of Daniel Juncadella into the final points paying position.
|1||7|| Bruno Spengler ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||70|
|2||53|| Jamie Green ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||70||5.7|
|3||99|| Mike Rockenfeller ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||70||6 8|
|4||4|| Robin Frijns ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||70||11.6|
|5||25|| Philipp Eng ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||70||16.3|
|6||28|| Loic Duval ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||70||17.5|
|7||33|| René Rast ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||70||25 4|
|8||51|| Nico Müller ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||70||29.0|
|9||16|| Timo Glock ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||70||33.5|
|10||23|| Daniel Juncadella ||Aston Martin Vantage DTM||70||37.9|
|11||62|| Ferdinand Habsburg ||Aston Martin Vantage DTM||70||39.5|
|12||76|| Jake Dennis ||Aston Martin Vantage DTM||69||1 lap|
|13||47|| Joel Eriksson ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||69||1 lap|
|14||27|| Jonathan Aberdein ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||69||1 lap|
|15||21|| Pietro Fittipaldi ||Audi RS 5 Turbo DTM||68||2 laps|
|16||11|| Marco Wittmann ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||64||6 laps|
|17||31|| Sheldon Van Der Linde ||BMW M4 Turbo DTM||51||19 laps|
|18||3|| Paul di Resta ||Aston Martin Vantage DTM||44||26 laps|
|View full results|
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