DTM vs Super GT Qualifying LIVE
The grand finale of the 2019 DTM season will be a star-studded affair – both on and off the racetrack.
Although both the drivers’ and manufacturers’ titles have been sealed (going to René Rast (GER) and Audi, respectively), the sporting focus at this weekend’s (4-6 October) DTM event will centre on the duel for the teams’ championship, and the high-profile guest appearance of the Japanese SUPER GT series, spearheaded by former Formula 1 world champion Jenson Button (GBR).
Ahead of the DTM’s November visit to Japan for the ‘Dream Race’ at Fuji Speedway, three SUPER GT manufacturers – Honda, Nissan and Lexus – will race at Hockenheim this weekend.
The best-known of the five-driver line-up is undisputedly Jenson Button (GBR), who won the SUPER GT drivers’ title in 2018, his maiden season, partnered by team-mate Naoki Yamamoto (JPN) with his Honda NSX-GT.
Racing for Nissan: Ronnie Quintarelli (ITA), SUPER GT’s most crowned champion with four drivers’ titles to his name, and Tsugio Matsuda (JPN), who has won the championship twice, partnering Quintarelli in 2014 and ’15.
The 2017 SUPER GT champions, Nick Cassidy (NZL) and Ryo Hirakawa (JPN) will compete for Lexus.
Nissan and Lexus will each race with two drivers – one per race; Honda will race with just one driver.
The addition of the Super GT Cars has added greatly to the interest in the event and the tiop DTM drivers seem delighted to have the visitors from Japan along for the final.
“I take my hat off to DTM and SUPER GT for making these joint races happen. I’m extremely proud of being allowed to participate in such an event as a driver. Said BMW driver Philipp Eng.
“All of the guest drivers are top guys: not only Jenson Button, but also the other drivers. Moreover, I am also looking forward very much to racing against other brands. In any case, the weekend will be super exciting, and hopefully the start of something big. At the start of the season, we had a good weekend at Hockenheim, so I’m confident that we can be strong again. It’s our goal that a BMW driver ends up in the top three of the championship standings, either Marco [Wittmann] or myself.”
With the guest drivers ineligible for championship points, the duel for the prestigious DTM teams’ championship will be unaffected by the presence of the SUPER GT teams.
Recent victories for René Rast and Jamie Green (GBR) have pushed Audi Sport Team Rosberg (394 points) narrowly ahead of Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline (362pts) pairing of Nico Müller (SUI) and Robin Frijns (NED). After a season-long battle between the two squads, the pair are separated by a mere 32 points, with 86 points remaining on the table to be scored in the final two races.