Ricardo Feller took his maiden DTM victory in Imola in a race that saw the Swiss driver fight his way past Dev Gore after he lost the lead following a safety car shakeup.
Feller started the race from pole position but lost the lead at the end of the opening lap when he slid wide out of the final corner, allowing Felipe Fraga to slip by and assume the lead.
Fraga assumed the lead in a chaotic opening phase of the race that saw Maximilian Buhk, and Laurens Vanthoor taken out in a lap one incident before the safety car came out when Thomas Preining and Rolf Ineichen crashed out at Rivazza.
While most drivers made their stops under the safety car, Gore made his stop moments before the race was neutralized. This allowed the American driver to vault up to the front and into third place when almost the entire field came in later.
Gore sat behind Nick Cassidy and Dennis Olsen, who both opted not to pit under safety car and were at the head of the field when the race restarted.
Feller, meanwhile, had fallen to fifth behind Arjun Maini who similarly pitted prior to the safety car but had mistimed his stop, meaning he had to return to the pits later on.
When Fraga was then eliminated on the restart thanks to a puncture sustained by contact with Lucas Auer, it left Feller clear to chase after Gore while Cassidy and Olsen attempted to stretch their advantage.
Feller made his way past Gore’s Team Rosberg Audi R8 LMS GT3 Evo II into Piratella a handful of laps before Cassidy and Olsen made their mandatory stops, thus regaining the race lead.
From there, he controlled the gap to secure his first DTM victory of his career, while Gore retained second place to take his first series podium.
The podium was completed by Marco Wittmann, who secured third place on the final lap after coming out on top in a lengthy battle with Auer, who finished fourth.
Sheldon van der Linde completed the top five, ahead of Philipp Eng, Maro Engel and Nico Mueller.
Mueller finished eighth after winning a four-way battle with Maximilian Goetz, Mirko Bortolotti and Luca Stolz that saw the latter drop multiple positions after initially attempting to pass the Audi before being overtaken himself by Goetz and Bortolotti.
Bortolotti secured the final top ten spot, while Stolz finished twelfth after also losing out to Timo Glock.
The race featured ten retirements, with Rene Rast, Dennis Olsen, Clemens Schmid, David Schumacher and Marius Zug also failing to finish.
RESULTS: Race 2