THE SUPERLATIVE MOTOR SPORT FESTIVAL
DTM fans are eagerly awaiting the start of the new season on the 5th-7th May in the Motodrom – with brand new DTM rockets from Audi, BMW and Mercedes-AMG. Spectators can also look forward to the continuation of a brilliant tradition: the drift kings of the World Rallycross Championship will also line up to take part in Europe’s most popular touring car series for the third time. DTM star Mattias Ekström will be coming to Hockenheim as the reigning Rallycross Champion!
New race cars, new rules, new racing drivers – there’s plenty to get excited about at the DTM 2017. The season opening is traditionally celebrated with two races at the Hockenheimring in Baden-Württemberg. DTM stars love the challenging, high-speed course in the south of Germany because it’s fast, because there are several opportunities for overtaking and because the Motodrom stadium creates such a sensational atmosphere that the drivers can even feel it under their racing helmets!
The starting field will be made up of 18 DTM race cars. In order to reduce costs, each manufacturer will only be fielding six cars instead of eight, but this won’t impinge on the action on the race track in any way. Marco Wittmann, who won the championship in the very last minutes of a thrilling showdown in the 2016 finale, will return to spearhead BMW’s campaign to defend his title. In view of the brand new BMW M4 DTM, the Munich-based manufacturers have decided to play the consistency card when picking their team of drivers: Tom Blomqvist, Augusto Farfus and Maxime Martin make up Wittmann’s BMW colleagues, as well as 2012 champion Bruno Spengler and former Formula 1 driver Timo Glock. Born in the German state of Hesse and now living in Switzerland, Glock has clocked up three victories in his four years of DTM driving, one of which was in Hockenheim – a good omen!
Brand champion Audi brings a breath of fresh air to the field; the sextet is supplemented with newcomers Loïc Duval and René Rast. Rast has already raced as a substitute driver on three occasions, earning his ticket into the squad by scoring points in the 2016 finale. The newcomers will be joined in the Audi RS 5 DTM by their experienced regular team members: Jamie Green, one of the best drivers overall, Nico Müller and 2013 champion Mike Rockenfeller. Last but not least is Mattias Ekström (Champion 2004/2007), who will have to work twice as hard in the Motodrom stadium – the Swedish warhorse will also be racing as world champion in the World Rallycross Championship. Incidentally, his EKS team will now be racing with support from the Audi factory in Ingolstadt.
Mercedes-AMG has reported a surprise change of drivers: Edoardo Mortara, Audi’s best driver from the previous year and Wittmann’s closest rival for the championship title up until the 18th and last race of the 2016 season, has signed on with the Stuttgart-based manufacturers. Fans can wait with eager anticipation to see how the Italian Mortara – who is considered a real character in the series – fits in with the star-studded team and handles the new Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM. ‘Edo’ will be joined by four familiar faces returning to the circuit: the squad includes former champions Gary Paffett and Paul di Resta as well as race winners Robert Wickens and Lucas Auer. After a five-year break, Maro Engel has once again qualified for the top-class DTM team.
KNOCKOUT SYSTEM TO WIN WORLD RALLYCROSS CHAMPIONSHIP
Rallycross in the Motodrom stadium? Of course! It’s been held here for the last three years thanks to a specially prepared course with tarmac and gravel sections. The Rallycross racers are compact, powerful and above all, robust. And there’s a good reason for that – in the spectacular race heats, contact is a common occurrence for the kings of drifting. Only the strongest racers can make it through to the next round. The final race is held on the Sunday. Quite different, but no less fierce are the sprint races for the Audi and Porsche Cups. Once again, spectators can also look forward to autograph sessions, open air concerts and parties. DTM – a fan festival in Hockenheim! It’s even held twice a season; the grand finale is set to take place in the Motodrom stadium in October.
Season Start 5th - 7th May 2017*
Season Finale 13th - 15th October 2017*
Once again, fans can look forward to action-packed events at Hockenheim. For more information please go to www.dtm.com.