The winner of the 2012 DTM season opener at Hockenheim is British driver Gary Paffett (Thomas Sabo Mercedes AMG C-Coupé). He was ranked sixth on the grid but he then took a 4.7- second lead on Jamie Green (Mercedes AMG C-Coupé). This is the 18th win of Paffett in the DTM. It’s also his fourth victory at Hockenheim.
Throughout Paffett’s career, this would be his 26th podium in the 82nd DTM race and his seventh in a DTM race at Hockenheim. Paffett’s 18 wins and a 22% winning rate mean that he has the highest number of wins among the drivers that are competing at the DTM. This is Paffett and Green’s 100th one-two victory for Mercedes-Benz in the DTM since 1988. This is the sixth straight win of Mercedes at the home race in Hockenheim (opener and finale).
This is the automaker’s third consecutive win of DTM season opener (Paffett 2010 and 2012, and Bruno Spengler, 2011). Since 1988, Mercedes-Benz has racked up 32 overall wins of 65 DTM races at the Hockenheimring. In this same period, Mercedes-Benz drivers won a total of 166 times in 343 DTM races. But in the three-way rivalry between Audi, BMW and Mercedes-Benz, Paffett’s win is the first during the new DTM era.
This marks the first win for the new DTM Mercedes AMG C Coupé, which succeeds the AMG Mercedes C-Class, the most successful vehicle throughout DTM’s history with 85 wins in 159 races. Christian Vietoris (Mercedes-Benz Bank AMG C-Coupé) had moved up from 15th on the grid to end the race in fourth place.
Ralf Schumacher (Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) finished seventh while David Coulthard (DHL Paket Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) placed eighth. Twelfth place went to Susie Wolff (TV Spielfilm Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) while Robert Wickens (stern Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) was at the 14th position. DTM rookie Roberto Merhi (Junge Sterne Mercedes AMG C-Coupé) had to retire from the race.