Augusto Farfus claimed his first DTM win in dominating fashion at Valencia. The Brazilian retained the lead at the start and never left it for the whole race. Adrien Tambay and Mattias Ekström completed the podium of an eventful race.
The start was eventful as Mercedes’ Roberto Merhi and BMW’s Martin Tomczyk had to retire due to contact, with Joey Hand’s BMW M3 damaged as well. At the end of the first lap BMW Team RBM’s Augusto Farfus was leading from Audi Team Rosberg drivers Edoardo Mortara and Filipe Albuquerque, with Audi Sport Abt’s Adrien Tambay fourth and Audi Phoenix’s Mike Rockenfeller fifth.
The leading duo immediately opened a gap while Albuquerque led a close pack of six Audis, with Andy Priaulx occupying tenth place just ahead of fellow BMW driver Bruno Spengler. The Canadian overtook the triple World Champion on the third lap but was punished soon after that for a jump start, which forced him to serve a pit lane drive through penalty.
After the first pit stops, Audi Sport Abt’s Rahel Frey passed BMW Team Schnitzer driver Dirk Werner for tenth and just a few laps later a nightmarish race for Mercedes got even tougher as both Ralf Schumacher and Jamie Green were handed drive through penalties for exceeding the track limits.
Midway through the race drama started as Molina retired from fifth after a mistake at turn two. Three laps later, Abt Audi’s Timo Scheider retired as well, triggering Spengler’s climb up into the points zone.
The Canadian was quick and got just behind Werner and Frey, the former passing the Audi during the pit-stops. When Werner made a mistake, Frey was able to get back ahead of him him and Spengler was let through by his team-mate.
With six laps to go Mortara span out of second and found himself stuck in the gravel trap.
Meanwhile Andy Priaulx, who was sixth ahead of Frey and Spengler, slowed down dramatically and was reached by the two. At turn eight on lap 42 the drama started, as Priaulx was attacked by Frey around the outside. The Brit protected the inside and Spengler went through. Frey crossed lines with the Guernseyman and the two made contact, which was ruled as an unfair move by the stewards who ordered Priaulx to give the position back, and so dropped to eighth on lap 44.
Farfus won a faultless race ahead of Tambay, Ekström, Albuquerque and Rockenfeller. Spengler took a precious sixth as Gary Paffett retired on lap 27 when he was at the back of the field.
Frey came seventh to achieve her first DTM points ahead of Priaulx, Dirk Werner and the only Mercedes in the top ten, Jamie Green.
Paffett still leads the standings but the gap has narrowed down to just three points ahead of Spengler. Jamie Green is third, 18 points shy of the leader, and is the only other driver in contention for the title. Rockenfeller is fourth, 42 points adrift, while Ekström has a 46 point gap from the lead.
The title will now go to the wire in Hockenheim in three weeks.