DTM championship leader Mike Rockenfeller says his fourth place, achieved today at the Nurburgring, is worth more than usual after the Audi-man ended the first lap in last position.

Rockenfeller, who started the race out of position in eleventh, immediately became a victim of the hazardous conditions caused by the early downpour which dropped the champion elect to rear of the field at the end of the opening lap.

His Phoenix team however used the opportunity to pit their man onto the wet tyre giving Rockenfeller the lead as the rest of the pack struggled on the slick tyre- the early tyre change later cost the German of victory as the stop was made before the pit-window was open.

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Rockenfeller's fourth place means the former Le Mans 24-winner now leads the championship by 35 points from Mercedes' Christian Vietoris with three rounds to go.

"Obviously, I'm very pleased with the points -that goes without saying when you're almost the last car in the field after the first turn," said Rockenfeller.

"In these conditions, anything can happen and it went optimally. Of course I'd prefer standing on the podium and to be smelling of champagne. But that's not always possible in the DTM; the field is too close for that and the level much too high.

"That means you've got to take what you can get. And this fourth place today is really worth a lot."