Mercedes-AMG Motorsport’s Gary Paffett was a happy individual at Hockenheim, having taken a fourth place finish in the final race of the 2017 DTM season, as the 2005 champion rounded out the top ten in the drivers’ standings with 102 points to his credit.
“What a day! Qualifying was again disappointing with P9, unfortunately. That was a bit frustrating, because the car had more to give, but the race was perfect,” explained the Briton, who finished just over nine and a half seconds behind Mike Rockenfeller.
The Suffolk-based driver was battling at the start with the likes of the 2013 Champion, the BMW pair of Augusto Farfus and Maxime Martin, along with stable mate Robert Wickens.
But then Paffett and his team opted to go for a longer strategy in the race, changing to fresh Hankook tyres with 22 minutes remaining.
The 2005 champion ended up being one of seven drivers setting a sub 1m33s lap time around the 4.574-km circuit.
“I had the freshest tyres after we’d pitted, and the car was just incredible in the race,” stated the Mercedes me driver, who has finished in the top ten overall 12 times in his lengthy DTM career.
“Its pace was amazing and very different to everyone else’s in the second stint. It was a really good race.”