Moscow Raceway: Rockenfeller wins as Spengler struggles

Mike Rockenfeller wins for Audi at the Moscow Raceway to extend his points advantage over Bruno Spengler.
Audi's Mike Rockenfeller has won the first ever Russian DTM round at the Moscow Raceway while his chief championship rival Bruno Spengler failed to score a point.

Rockenfeller led away well from pole-position and was able to control the pace at the front ahead of Mattias Ekstrom and Augusto Farfus who ran in close company during the opening laps.

Spengler, on the other hand, had dropped to eighth after starting fourth and eventually collided with Audi's Miguel Molina into turn 1, which dropped the defending champion out of points scoring contention and also forced the Spaniard to retire.

Meanwhile, Rockenfeller ran a long opening stint on the option tyre and pitted on lap 44, rejoining behind Ekstrom on a different strategy.

The German was the first to blink during the second round of stops and in a perfectly choreographed piece of Audi teamwork Rockenfeller emerged in the lead after Ekstrom made his final mandatory stop, further maximising Rockenfeller's bid for the title.

The former Le-Mans 24 hour victor now has a 27-point lead over his nearest challenger Spengler, who in turn is 10-points ahead of Gary Paffett.

Like Rockenfeller the Audi of Adrien Tambay also ran long on the option tyre and incredibly made his first stop on lap 56.

Tambay's miraculous tyre conversation allowed the Frenchman to leap from twelfth to very nearly an unlikely rostrum with the BMW of Farfus narrowly hanging on for the final step on the podium.

Paffett added to his points tally in fifth after barging his way past the ABT-run Audi of Jamie Green through turn 1 in the dying laps, Green having to settle for sixth.

Joey Hand yet again earns himself some more valuable points in seventh just ahead of his fellow BMW team-mate Dirk Werner in eighth while ABT's Timo Scheider and HWA's Christian Vietoris round out the points paying positions.

by Simon Evans

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Start of the Race (Photo Credit: DTM Media)
19 Mike Rockenfeller (D), Audi Sport Team Phoenix, Audi RS 5 DTM (Photo Credit: DTM Media)
1 Bruno Spengler (CDN), BMW Team Schnitzer, BMW M3 DTM (Photo Credit: DTM Media)
19 Mike Rockenfeller (D), Audi Sport Team Phoenix, Audi RS 5 DTM (Photo Credit: DTM Media)
Lucas Auer - Mercedes AMG C63 DTM [pic credit Mercedes Media]
Jamie Green - Rosberg Audi [pic credit Audi Media]
Dieter Gass, Audi Sport, DTM [Credit: Audi Sport]
DTM - Hockenheimring [pic credit DTM Media]
ART Grand Prix, DTM [Credit: Mercedes-Benz DTM]
Gotz at Mercedes
Esteban Ocon poses with the Mercedes DTM car at Jerez. Pic credit: Daimler
Charles Pic poses next to a Mercedes DTM car at Jerez. Pic credit: Daimler
AMG Mercedes C-Coupe [pic credit Mercedes]
AMG Mercedes C-Coupe [pic credit DTM Media]
Mattias Ekstrom - Abt Audi [pic credit DTM Media]
Mattias Ekstrom - Abt Audi [pic credit DTM Media]

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