The DTM Series travels to the Adriatic coast this weekend for the third round of the season at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli.
Much of the focus will be on MotoGP star Andrea Dovizioso, or Dovi as he is known, who makes his debut in the DTM filling in for Pietro Fittipaldi at WRT.
Fresh from a third place finish at Mugello, Dovizioso returns to track in Italy in front of his adoring home crowd – and will be the only Italian on the grid.
The factory Ducati rider, has been busy getting to grips with the DTM and recently spent a day and a half testing under the guidance of two-time DTM champion Mattias Ekström. The Swede will coach Dovi throughout the weekend too.
“This is a completely new experience for me,” said the Italian. “The Audi RS 5 DTM has such incredible power and downforce – you can really feel it in the fast corners. The racing line is completely different than for a bike and it’s tricky to find the limit. I’m really looking forward to the weekend and I just want to enjoy it – without any expectations, because the level of competition in this championship is extremely high.”
For the weekend his Audi RS5 DTM will adorn the number 34; it was with this number he contested many seasons in the junior categories.
As a guest driver, Dovizioso is not eligible to score driver, team or manufacturer points this weekend. If he finishes inside the points the drivers behind would assume his points.
Fittipaldi, meanwhile, will be in Canada undertaking his reserve driver role for Haas F1 Team.
For those who raced in Misano last season they will be faced with a new challenge – by taking to the track in daylight. Last year’s even was held in rainy conditions and was a night.
Conditions are expected to by much better this time around however, with it set to start at the regular of 13.30.