Paul Di Resta’s masterpiece: 2010 DTM champion
Fortune in the Far East. Scottish Mercedes-Benz driver Paul Di Resta ends up second in the DTM finale in the metropolis of Shanghai, which makes him the 2010 DTM champion. Bruno Spengler from Canada (Mercedes-Benz), who was the points’ leader prior to the race, failed to make up positions from 17th place on the grid following an accident in qualifying, which cost him his three points’ margin. In the final standings, 24-year old Di Resta has 71 points.
“This smile won’t be off my face for a long time. Fortunately, my flight is only booked for Monday. I would have liked for more family members to be here to celebrate with me. But now, I will celebrate with the team. Today, it was more about the title rather than victory in the race. That has worked out”, Di Resta described his feelings. In total, the Scot scored three race wins and three second places this season. Di Resta only failed to score points on two occasions.
British driver Gary Paffett won the race in China, which allowed him to become runner-up in the final drivers’ standings to complete the 1-2-3 for Mercedes-Benz in the championship. “Now, I have won for the second time in Shanghai after 2004. I am enjoying this type of circuits. My goal was to win this race. The rest was out of my hands”, said race winner Paffett.
The German DTM champion of the years 2008 and 2009, Timo Scheider, became the best-placed driver of an Audi A4 DTM by finishing third in the DTM finale. In the battle for the title, Scheider was also the best driver with four rings on the bonnet of his car in fourth place. “Admittedly, I had problems at the beginning of the season, but the team kept its faith in me. In the second half of the season, I was again able to battle for pole positions and race wins. Third place in the final round is a good way to end the year”, said Scheider, looking back on the 2010 season.
Behind German Martin Tomczyk (Audi) in fourth place, Spaniard Miguel Molina became the best-placed driver with a 2008-spec car with his Audi A4 DTM in fifth. DTM rookie David Coulthard from Scotland achieved his maiden points’ finish. The Mercedes-Benz driver ended up eighth and scored one point. 19,000 spectators came to watch the DTM season finale in the Far East. After a collision with seven minutes remaining, the race was stopped and wasn’t restarted.
The first DTM race of the 2011 season will take place at the Hockenheimring Baden-Württemberg on May 1st next year.
Head of motorsport Mercedes-Benz Norbert Haug: “Paul Di Resta is a worthy champion. Yesterday, that was by no means certain. After all, making a mistake here is easy. It was a thrilling race. Gary’s second victory here in Shanghai speaks for him. Everybody involved has worked together very well. We have had quite a few good seasons before, but this year with the first three places was something quite special. The fact that the first three drivers were separated by only five points shows how close competition in this series is.”
Head of motorsport Audi Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich: “I am proud of being a member of such a great team that is working on a common goal. We haven’t been as strong as in the years before. Even the smallest errors sometimes mean that you have to end your championship dreams. When you lose, it doesn’t mean that you are weak, it just means that others were a little bit stronger. We have to catch up and we have learned our lesson, from which we will benefit next year.”