Gary Paffett: “It was a really special race being my 100th DTM start and I’m just grateful I didn’t crash out after the first lap!"
London, UK – It was a special race for Gary Paffett as he marked his 100th DTM start with a sixth place finish, the best of the Mercedes-Benz drivers, at Oschersleben in Germany at the weekend.
He made Q3 comfortably and ended up finishing seventh (quickest of his Mercedes-Benz teammates), just two-tenths short of the pole sitter.
However he was later awarded a five-place grid penalty for the illegal use of a set or tyres during free practice. Now starting 12th, the 32-year old, driving the EURONICS Mercedes AMG C-Coupé, was positive he could move forward as he had felt happy with the car all weekend.
By the end of the first lap, he had moved up two places where he started a long battle with Timo Schneider. Hoping to get him during the pit stops, Paffett would come out just short each time and eventually had to settle for sixth place.
“I am not unhappy with the result”, said Paffett. “It was a really special race being my 100th DTM start and I’m just grateful I didn’t crash out after the first lap! I have been pretty happy with the car all weekend and if I had started where I qualified we could have been on the podium, but I did all I could have done from 12th.
Although I am out of contention for the championship, I still have some things to aim for and can remember this season for this special milestone I have achieved.”
Paffett remains sixth in the championship with 65 points, just six away from third. The penultimate round of the 2013 DTM season will be held at Zandvoort in the Netherlands, 28-29 September 2013.