In only his 14th Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters race, Joel Eriksson kept cool under pressure and used great strategy to take his maiden victory, despite very changeable weather conditions at Misano World Circuit.
He would cross the finish line after 32 laps of the 4.226-km circuit to win the second ever night race in DTM history, and become the second youngest winner of a DTM race after Pascal Wehrlein.
Edoardo Mortara took another well-deserved podium on home soil, finishing 1.817 seconds behind the Swede, having opted to pit on lap 24 from the lead.
Defending champion René Rast would complete the podium after another strong showing behind the wheel of his Audi RS5 DTM, despite being turned sideways by Timo Glock on the very first lap, which put the German down the order.
Robin Frijns showed his true racing prowess once again, as the Dutchman fought his way through the field from 15th on the grid to take a well earned fourth place.
Alex Zanardi measured the conditions to great measure, with the Italian taking a well-earned fifth place on only his second DTM race in the specially adapted M4 DTM.
Paul Di Resta now takes the lead in the drivers’ standings by nine points at the end of the weekend, as the Scot took sixth place ahead of pole sitter Loïc Duval, who lost out due to the sudden heavy rain shower and Safety Car phase.
Jamie Green took his first points score in five races, as the Brit was also able to take advantage of the conditions to cross the finish line in eighth place, with Mike Rockenfeller and Nico Müller completing the top ten.
Bruno Spengler also ended his points drought, having taken the last points paying position in 11th place, due to Zanardi being ineligible to score points as a guest driver.
Wehrlein was 12th after a difficult race, ahead of two-time champion Marco Wittmann, whilst Gary Paffett lost all chances of scoring points after a clash between himself and Stuttgart stablemate Daniel Juncadella on Lap 18, when the Briton attempted to pass Spengler, before the Spaniard tagged the left side of his Mercedes.
Glock would finish behind the 2005 champion, having finished outside the points for the third time in four races, whilst Philipp Eng was unable to progress further forward, finishing in 16th, ahead of Juncadella.
Juncadella also had his own fair share of dramas, as he went wide at turn 15 on lap nine and went through the gravel and onto the grass, before spinning into the pit lane entry. He also came close to being hit by Green , who was on his way to make his mandatory pit stop.
Both Augusto Farfus and Lucas Auer were the only two drivers to not finish the race, with the Brazilian hitting the barriers on the exit of turn 16, which heavily damaged the right hand side of his M4 DTM.
Auer himself spun out into the gravel on lap 12, having clipped the white line on the outside of turn 15, which put the Austrian backwards into the gravel and lightly damaging the rear of his C63 Coupé with the tyre barrier.
Di Resta leads the drivers’ standings after Misano on 186 points, ahead of Paffett, who still remains on 177 after a very disappointing weekend for the Briton, whilst Mortara is only 39 points behind, having scored two podiums this weekend.
Mercedes also holds the top three spots in the teams’ title race, with Mercedes-AMG Motorsport Petronas on 261, ahead of SILBERPFEIL ENERGY Mercedes-AMG Motorsport and Mercedes-AMG Motorsport REMUS.
The Stuttgart brand now stretches it’s advantage in the race for the constructors’ crown to 273 points over BMW, who now sit on 404 points, with Audi Sport a further 201 behind its Munich rival.
The DTM now heads over to the Eifel region in just two weeks’ time, as the Nürburgring will host the next two races of the 2018 campaign, being held between the 7th and 9th of September.
|1||47||Joel ERIKSSON||BMW Team RBM||BMW M4 DTM||31||57:19.154||1:44.455||12|
|2||48||Edoardo MORTARA||SILBERPFEIL Energy Mercedes-AMG Motorsport||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||31||1.817||1:42.023||2|
|3||33||René RAST||Audi Sport Team Rosberg||Audi RS5 DTM||31||6.493||1:42.961||5|
|4||4||Robin FRIJNS||Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline||Audi RS5 DTM||31||16.879||1:43.445||15|
|5||12||Alessandro ZANARDI||BMW Team RMR||BMW M4 DTM||31||47.316||1:44.692||19|
|6||3||Paul DI RESTA||Mercedes-AMG Motorsport REMUS||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||31||59.802||1:42.769||10|
|7||28||Loïc DUVAL||Audi Sport Team Phoenix||Audi RS5 DTM||31||1:10.232||1:43.106||1|
|8||53||Jamie GREEN||Audi Sport Team Rosberg||Audi RS5 DTM||31||1:12.162||1:42.648||17|
|9||99||Mike ROCKENFELLER||Audi Sport Team Phoenix||Audi RS5 DTM||31||1:21.814||1:44.382||4|
|10||51||Nico MÜLLER||Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline||Audi RS5 DTM||31||1:25.646||1:43.668||7|
|11||7||Bruno SPENGLER||BMW Team RBM||BMW M4 DTM||31||1:26.598||1:43.470||18|
|12||94||Pascal WEHRLEIN||Mercedes-AMG Motorsport PETRONAS||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||31||1:27.097||1:42.458||11|
|13||11||Marco WITTMANN||BMW Team RMG||BMW M4 DTM||31||1:34.540||1:43.530||6|
|14||2||Gary PAFFETT||Mercedes-AMG Motorsport PETRONAS||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||31||1:39.009||1:44.304||8|
|15||16||Timo GLOCK||BMW Team RMR||BMW M4 DTM||31||1:42.331||1:43.941||9|
|16||25||Philipp ENG||BMW Team RMR||BMW M4 DTM||31||1:42.600||1:44.959||16|
|17||23||Daniel JUNCADELLA||Mercedes-AMG Motorsport REMUS||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||30||+ 1 LAP||1:42.662||3|
|R||15||Augusto FARFUS||BMW Team RMG||BMW M4 DTM||14||DNF||1:45.023||14|
|R||22||Lucas AUER||SILBERPFEIL Energy Mercedes-AMG Motorsport||Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM||10||DNF||1:43.734||13|