DTM again proved to be one of the most interesting series
In 2016 it was again proved that DTM is one of the most exciting and most thrilling racing championships in the world.
Interesting facts and figures
Although with only three manufacturers but with 24 cars on the grid the DTM is nowadays one of the most attractive championships in the world. The format with two races per weekend introduced a couple of years ago proved to be a perfect decision. Here are some interesting facts and figures which you barely can see in other racing series:
– Each of 26 drivers scored points in 2016 season
– Nine drivers managed to score at least one win
– 18 drivers scored at least one podium finish
– 12 drivers won the pole position
– All manufacturers managed to win the race
– Only seven drivers have not been in the lead a single lap in one of the 18 races
Close battle between Wittmann and Mortara
For the second time in his career, Marco Wittmann won the DTM championship title, even after the runner-up Edoardo Mortara had more wins on his account. The BMW driver won three races (Red Bull Ring, Moscow, Nurburgring), while the Italian behind the wheel of Audi won on five occasions – at Norisring, Nurburgring, Hungaroring, and twice at Hockenheim. At the end of the campaign, a difference between two drivers was only four points.
Audi was dominant manufacturer
In the Manufacturers’ championship, Audi absolutely deserved the title. The drivers of ’Four rings’ from Ingolstadt won a total of 10 races and hold the lead in 50 percent of the laps. The Bavarians lost their crown won in 2015 after they scored four wins in 2016, while Mercedes again had a season to forget even after the Stuttgarters scored the same number of victories like BMW.
Interestingly, Mercedes had pace. The Canadian driver Robert Wickens behind the wheel of AMG C63 DTM scored three fastest laps in 2016. Champion Marco Wittmann didn’t set a single fastest race lap but was the best in qualifying as his average grid position amounted to 6.6.
Two champions retired from DTM
In 2016 there were only three rookie drivers in DTM. Esteban Ocon jumped into the seat of Mercedes, replacing champion Pascal Wehrlein, but the Frenchman left the series in the middle of the season to join Manor Formula 1 team. He was replaced with Felix Rosenqvist who drove in the last four rounds of the season. Finally, the experienced GT racing driver Rene Rast fulfilled his dream to race in DTM after acting as a substitute for Audi drivers Adrien Tambay (at Zandvoort) and Mattias Ekstrom (season finale at Hockenheim).
The season of 2016 was the last in DTM for the two-time champion Timo Scheider. Another former champion, Martin Tomczyk, left the series, as well Antonio Felix da Costa and surely there will be more changes in the driver line-ups after the decision to reduce the number of cars from 24 to 18, six by each manufacturer. It will be interesting to see how that will affect the quality of the series.
Video – Best moments of 2016 DTM Season
There will be changes in the driver line-ups in 2017
While the teams already preparing for the 2017 campaign which kicks-off in May at Hockenheim, the biggest transfer is completed. Edoardo Mortara left Audi for Mercedes. It is expected that Mercedes and Audi will shuffle drivers line-up a bit more, while BMW trimmed their list of drivers and it is unlikely they will bring new faces in any of their teams.