DTM to Switch From Timed Races to Fixed Lap Count

by Chloe Hewitt
Robin Frijns - DTM 2019

For 2019, the DTM Series will reintroduce a set number of laps for each race.

Since 2017, the races have been set at 55 minutes plus one lap.

This came after the series introduced a two race per weekend format back in 2015, with the Saturday race running for 40 minutes and the Sunday for an hour.

Ahead of the 2017 season, the decision was made for the races to be the same length with the 55 minutes plus one lap rule introduced.

From this season, a fixed lap count will be reintroduced with the duration based on approximately 58 minutes, according to the series.

Similar to the BTCC, races can also be extended by up to three laps in the event of a safety car period. However, the permitted amount of time for the race to be completed within is 70 minutes.

Other changes to the series this year include only the best four cars from each marque counting towards the manufacturers’ championship.

This is due to R-Motorsport Aston Martin only having four cars as opposed to BMW‘s six and Audi‘s eight (including the two WRT-run cars).

In regards to technical changes, launch control has been abolished, while a rear camera replaces the central interior mirror.

The series has also modified its race weekend format as a result of its busy support programme, cutting down from three practice sessions taking place on each day of the weekend to just two on the Friday.

Free Practice 1 will be 45 minutes long, while Free Practice 2 will run for 30 minutes.

An exception to this is Brands Hatch, where local noise restrictions mean there is a condensed two-day schedule.

The opening round of the 2019 DTM Series takes place this weekend, 3-5 May, at Hockenheim.

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