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Di Resta leads British 1-2 in Brands Hatch DTM race two

Sunday, August 12 2018

Paul Di Resta claimed an emphatic victory in the second DTM race of the weekend at Brands Hatch this afternoon (Sunday), after resisting race-long pressure from compatriot and team-mate Gary Paffett in an all-Mercedes-AMG one-two.

Paffett started from pole position, but Di Resta launched supremely from the line to run side-by-side with his fellow Mercedes-AMG driver into Paddock Hill Bend on the first lap. Di Resta ran around the outside all the way to the hairpin at Druids where he secured the lead of the race.

Behind the leaders, Augusto Farfus clashed with Robin Frijns and Lucas Auer at the exit of Graham Hill Bend, forcing the race organisers to summon the safety car and neutralise the race. 

Di Resta maintained his lead from the two-by-two safety car restart whilst Paffett had to fend off the attention of Pascal Wehrlein in a third Mercedes AMG-C 63, whilst the third Briton on the grid - Jamie Green - made his way up to fourth, having started a lowly 11th on the grid. 

Wehrlein was amongst the first to pit on lap five, promting Green to third, and allowing the homegrown contingent to circulate in first second and third. 

Audi's reigning champion Rene Rast dived for the pit lane the following lap and was able to jump Wehrlein. Both very nearly found themselves behind the BMW of Phillip Eng the next lap, but he was unable to hold them off on cold tyres.

Ri Resta and Paffett both pitted in the following laps and returned to the track in the same order, comfortably in the 'virtual lead' of the race. This released Green into first position on-track and allowed him to lap at a strong pace which at one point looked strong enough to give him a chance of the podium.

Indeed, as the race entered its final 20 minutes, Green was lapping consistently faster than either Di Resta or Paffett and brough himself right into the reckoning. Unfortunately for the Leicester-born Audi man, his pit stop was slow and he was immidiately swallowed up by those on warmer tyres before he was awarded a drive-through penalty for a clash with Marco Wittmann.

At the very front, Di Resta and Paffett's duel continued with the latter seemingly quicker, but unable to overtake. As the leading duo battled, Rast was able to bring himself onto their tail where he loomed until the end of the race. 

Ultimately, all three drivers drove very well in the closing laps to ensure themselves top-three finishes. 

Wehrlein finished fourth, with Wittmann fifth whilst 2013 DTM champion Mike Rockenfeller completed the top-six after a late surge through the field. 

Di Resta's victory means what he has won at the Kent circuit in each of his last three visits behind the wheel of a DTM car - even though he had never previously raced on the full Grand Prix circuit before. 

DTM race two result

1, P Di Resta, Mercedes C63 AMG DTM
2, G Paffett, Mercedes C63 AMG DTM
3, R Rast, Audi RS 5 DTM
4, P Wehrlein, Mercedes C63 AMG DTM
5, M Wittmann, BMW M4 DTM
6, M Rockenfeller, Audi RS 5 DTM
7, P Eng, BMW M4 DTM
8, L Auer, Mercedes C63 AMG DTM
9, D Juncadella, Mercedes C63 AMG DTM
10, N Muller, Audi RS 5 DTM

More to follow.