British racing driver Gary Paffett was this weekend crowned 2012 Vice Champion after securing a second place finish in the final round at Hockenheim.
Paffett headed into the tenth round of the Championship three points ahead of his nearest rival; Bruno Spengler after having led the Championship since race one.
On Sunday afternoon, Paffett lined up in P2, behind Farfus in pole and ahead of Spengler in P3. However Paffett was slow off the line which enabled Spengler to moveinto P2, with Hand also managing to sneak by into P3.
Paffett immediately begun his fight back and by the end of lap one had overtaken Hand and was up to P3, and 0.9 seconds behind Farfus in P2.
On lap eleven Paffett came in for his first pitstop of the afternoon. A perfect stop by the Mercedes team allowed Paffett to rejoin the track in P2; ahead of Farfus.
One lap later Spengler made his first stop of the race and came back out four seconds ahead of Paffett. Paffett then spent the next stint of the race pushing hard to close the gap to his title rival.
Within just five laps Paffett had got the gap down from four seconds to two seconds.
Paffett made his final pitstop of the race on lap 24 and continued to close the gap to Spengler. By lap 33 the gap between the two cars was down to just one second.
However in the closing stages of the race Paffett’s tyres began to drop off and the THOMAS SABO Mercedes AMG C-Coupe driver had to settle for second place in the race.
"My team has done brilliantly well this season in terms of performance and it is very unfortunate that we missed winning the championship title in the last race by four points.
So in the immediate aftermath of the race, disappointment sits deep, of course, because from mypoint of view we deserved to win the championship title just as much as Bruno Spengler and BMW.
Congratulations to Bruno on his first DTM title! We will go on the attack again next year to take the championship."
Paffett ends the 2012 DTM Season in second place on 145 points. Spengler finishes the Season in first place on 149 points and Jamie Green in third place on 121 points.
Source: Gary Paffet