|© Force India
Force India test and reserve driver Paul di Resta emerged as the 2010 DTM champion after he finished second in the season finale race at Shanghai on Sunday.
Di Resta clinched the title by four points from fellow Mercedes counterpart and McLaren test and reserve driver Gary Paffett – who won the race in China.
"This championship is great for me and the team, but it's especially important to my family, my supporters and, most importantly, my dad," said the newly crowned champion on his website. "He was the one who gave me the opportunity to go racing when I was a kid and if it hadn't been for his commitment and belief, I wouldn't be where I am today.”
The Scot, who was trailing Bruno Spengler by three points before the weekend, started the race from pole position - beside Paffett - and all he had to do was finish in the top four.
“Of course, that sounds very straightforward," the 24-year-old admitted. "But we all know anything can happen in motorsport. It would just have taken a puncture and the title would have gone.”
"Gary could go a bit more aggressive on the strategy whereas I had to play safe in case there was a safety car or a red flag,” he continued. “I just concentrated on doing what I had to do.”
"I was constantly being kept up-to-date by my pitcrew with everything else that was happening in the race, but I never took anything for granted and I certainly never thought the championship was clinched until I took the chequered flag."
Both di Resta and Paffett won three races each in the season. In contrast, former Formula 1 drivers Ralf Schumacher finished 14th in the final standings and David Coulthard earned his only point for the year at Shanghai to end up 16th in the championship. Both drove a Mercedes as well.