Felipe Fraga takes a maiden win in his rookie DTM season at the Norisring, after senior figures in the DTM paddock called for increased driving standards after race one.
Heading into race two, pole position was taken by Fraga. He narrowly beat out second-placed Mirko Bortolotti, who would’ve been hoping to put his nightmare performance in race one behind him. Walkenhorst Motorsport driver Marco Wittmann rounded out the top three.
The ramifications of race one were still being felt in the DTM paddock. With senior figures and drivers calling for a crackdown on driving standards, after only eleven cars reached the checkeredflag. An additional drivers briefing was held prior to the race to emphasise driving standards.
The message seemed to have gotten through to the drivers. As the whole field emerged unscathed after lap one. Race one podium sitters, René Rast and Dennis Olsen were the main movers on lap one. Three-time DTM champion Rast made up two places from sixth on the grid, whilst Olsen moved up three places from eighth.
The front three remained unchanged in the opening stages, with Fraga building a comfortable lead of more than one and a half seconds by the time the pit window had opened on lap 13.
Marco Wittmann pitted first out of the leading three. But a slow pitstop allowed René Rast to capitalise and take third. Fraga and Bortolotti maintained their positions ahead.
Fraga’s rookie season in DTM has been spoiled by mechanical retirements. The highlight being a second-placed finish at race two in Portimão. However, the Brazilian has been consistently fast, qualifying second for Imola race two and fifth for Lausitzring race one.
But, today at the Norisring was Fraga’s day. He never looked in trouble, even as a late surge by Bortolotti began to cut into the Red Bull AF Corse man’s lead. Fraga finished ahead by 2.7 seconds at the race finish.
Bortolotti took the fastest lap with a 49.150 to take an extra championship point and the lead in the series from Sheldon Van der Linde. With the South African finishing way down the field in 15th.
A run of consistent finishes from René Rast has also put him right on Van der Linde’s toes in the championship fight. The German’s championship pedigree could be a deciding factor in the title battle.
DTM heads to the Nürburgring from the 26th August to the 28th for the next round of the season.