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Farfus wins as Rockenfeller secures title

Photo by BMW AGBMW’s Augusto Farfus took his third Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters win of the season at Zandvoort, but was unable to stop main rival Mike Rockenfeller of Audi taking the 2013 title by finishing in second.

Click here for the full Round 9 Results.

Brazilian Farfus good off to a strong start to pass poleman Marco Wittmann into the first corner, with Rockenfeller also getting a strong start and duelling side-by-side with Wittmann through the opening corners.

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Once in front, Farfus was the class of the field, with an early challenge from Rockenfeller soon fading away as the German and his Audi Sport Team Pheonix outfit focussed on securing the 2013 title.

A late race safety car period, caused by contact between Jamie Green and Dirk Werner, led to a final lap sprint, eradicating a 15-second lead built up by Farfus. The Brazilian held on to take his third win of the season, but with Rockenfeller finishing in second the Audi driver heads to the final meeting with an unassailable championship lead.

It became clear that halfway through the race Team Phoenix switched their attention from the lead of the race to defending from Wittmann for second. With Team Abt’s Timo Scheider having got the jump on both Rockenfeller and Wittmann at his second pitstop, the former champion let Rockenfeller past in to a position which would eventually become second. Scheider subsequently acted as a safety cushion against any attack by BMW’s Wittmann.

A stunning final lap of the race by Mattias Ekström, who had earlier pitted for the option tyres for the final stint of the race, saw the Swede finish in fourth. The Audi driver overtook three cars on the final lap of the race, passing Wittmann with just a handful of turns left in the race.

Wittmann thus finished in fifth, ahead of Adrien Tambay who had been applying pressure to the German in the final stages of the race. BMW’s Joey Hand was seventh, scoring his fifth top-ten result of the season, ahead of Filipe Albuquerque in eighth.

Only one Mercedes-Benz driver finished inside the points on a disastrous weekend for the manufacturer, with Gary Paffett finishing in ninth ahead of Audi’s Miguel Molina in tenth.

Several drivers failed to get to grips with their cars during the race at Zandvoort, with Canadians Robert Wickens and Bruno Spengler finishing down in 16th and 20th for Mercedes-Benz and BMW respectively.

Despite showing promise in qualifying, BMW Team MTEK’s Timo Glock slipped down the order from eighth on the grid during the race, being classified in 18th position.

Rockenfeller holds an unassailable lead in the championship with 142 points, ahead of Farfus on 116 points. The final DTM race of the season takes place at the Hockenheimring on the 19th and 20th October.

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