As the DTM Series looks to get underway in a world struck by the Coronavirus pandemic, revisions have had to be made to the calendar to deal with restrictions countries have put in place.
The championship will start at the much loved street circuit of the Norisring in mid-July. Double headers and even a triple header means that the series will come to a close in early November at Hockenheim.
For the first time since 2005 the iconic Spa-Francorchamps will return to the DTM calendar. As well the Nürburgring will be hosting a total four races, unseen since 2003, with two on the full Grand Prix circuit and the others on the shortened configuration.
After making its debut in the series in 2019, Assen remains on the calendar as the series keeps it focus on traditional European circuits.
Chairman of the series, Gerhard Berger, said: “We would like to thank our fans for their patience in the past weeks, but now, we are all the more happy to be able to present a well-prepared and varied calendar that promises plenty of racing action. That is the result of the hard work by everyone involved in very special conditions. All in all, we have managed to come up with a compact calendar that was worth waiting for.”
Of course this means that some races that were supposed to be taking place can no longer do so – such as the rounds that were set to take place in Italy and Great Britain as they have been significantly impacted by the virus. Furthermore, limiting the calendar to races in Germany, Belgium and The Netherlands also reduces travel.
Marcel Mohaupt, ITR General Manager explains: “These difficult times have required extraordinary measures. Unfortunately, due to the Covid-19 pandemic, we will not be able to play DTM races this year in Anderstorp, Brands Hatch, Monza and St. Petersburg. We want to expressly thank these organizers for their constructive, fruitful and loyal collaboration in the past few weeks.”
However, before any racing can happen the series together with experts have outlined a detailed infection protection plan that is continuously being adapted in line with the current situation. Latest requirements by European countries and German federal states that are involved continue to be implemented as well.
BMW Director, Jens Marquardt, has also voiced the importance of the racing getting underway only when it is safe to do so, saying: “It is important for me to emphasise that we only can and want to have races when the general situation allows for it, the concepts to do so are approved by the authorities and health and safety of everyone involved in the DTM can be guaranteed.”
As for fans getting to be trackside, that will be considered on health and safety grounds – however fans will have tickets exchanged into vouchers that are valid until 31 December 2021 if it is not possible to attend planned races this year.
Furthermore, the DTM Trophy will also be present at six events taking place at Spa, the Lausitzring, both Nürburgring rounds, Zolder and Hockenheim. Additional series that form the support package are to be released in the coming weeks.
**Two-day event – subject to approval