Sixth Win in a Row for Rast as Paffett Crowned 2018 DTM Champion

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Gary Paffett: 2018 DTM Series - Hockenheim II
Credit: DTM Media

René Rast claimed his sixth win in a row, seventh of the season, in the DTM Series race at Hockenheim.

Polesitter Marco Wittmann finished in second with 2018 champion Gary Paffett in third.

A slow getaway from the grid allowed Rast to sail past Wittmann into the lead of the race.

Further back, Paul di Resta made a strong start and moved himself up from eleventh to eighth on the opening lap.

However, the Briton was told he had to switch position with Philipp Eng and as a result had to drop two positions.

The top three broke away from the rest of the pack, as Edoardo Mortara overtook Bruno Spengler for fourth place.

Needing to take a risk, di Resta was the first car into the pits at the end of lap six.

In the lead, Wittmann remained close to the rear of Rast with Paffett lingering about a second behind the BMW driver.

After a few laps, Wittmann dropped off the rear of Rast with the gaps between the trio stabilising.

It was Paffett’s turn to roll the dice next with the Briton the first of the front runners to take to the pits.

Rast pitted at the end of lap thirteen, and his stop was quicker than that of Paffett’s and was still ahead when he left the pits.

With others that had stopped, di Resta was in fifteenth and on much older tyres than his rivals.

Out front, Wittmann was leading from Nico Müller and Augusto Farfus with ten drivers still yet to pit.

With his tyres to temperature, Rast was pulling away from Paffett to maintain any chance of being champion.

At the end of lap seventeen, Wittmann finally came in for his pitstop with Paffett getting the undercut on the BMW driver.

Rast started to catch cars that were yet to pit, the first of those being Jamie Green who posed no challenge to his team-mate.

The next two cars on his radar though were Dani Juncadella and Pascal Wehrlein who would not be as eager to help the German.

Rast made quick work of Juncadella, whilst Green pitted and freed up Paffett.

This had also allowed Wittmann to close up on Paffett, as Rast passed Wehrlein.

Heading in to the hairpin, Wittmann got a run on the Briton and passed him for what would become second once pit stops had been served.

Further ahead, Rast passed Loïc Duval for fourth on track.

It was not going as well for di Resta who was engaged in a battle with Philipp Eng out of the points.

Wittmann moved into third on track after overtaking the yet to pit Wehrlein, who moved over to allow Paffett through as well.

Robin Frijns pitted from the lead meaning Wehrlein was the only driver yet to stop but the German driver came in at the end of the following lap.

Di Resta was struggling suffering a number of lock ups, and was overtaken by Frijns to put the Mercedes driver in eleventh place.

Much like yesterday, the freshly pitted Audis were on a charge through the pack.

Having been close to his rear for a number of laps, Müller passed Spengler and was off to hunt down Paffett.

It was too little, too late as the gap was too much to make up.

Rast crossed the line to take his sixth win in a row, and the seventh of the year.

Wittmann, came home in second with Paffett taking third to win the championship.

Müller was fourth with Frijns in fifth after he passed Spengler late on.

Behind Spengler was four more BMWs with Farfus, Eng, Joel Eriksson and Timo Glock.

Di Resta ended in fourteenth place and as a result concedes second in the championship to Rast.

2018 DTM Series Results: Hockenheim II – Race Two

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An NCTJ accredited Journalism Graduate covering DTM and the FIA Formula 3 Championship.
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