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New Russia round completes 2020 DTM calendar

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New Russia round completes 2020 DTM calendar
By:
Oct 3, 2019, 10:31 AM

The 2020 DTM calendar has been completed with the announcement that the series will head to new Russian circuit Igora Drive after signing a five-year deal with the venue.

As reported by Motorsport.com, Russia was in frame to return to the DTM calendar for the first time in 2017, although the series admitted that it was also in discussions with other circuits in Europe.

The confirmation of a new five-year contract with Igora Drive was made during a live-streamed press conference at Hockenheim on Thursday.

The Hermann Tilke-designed, FIA Grade 2 circuit, north of St Petersburg, has filled the slot the DTM had called a "very exciting" addition when it announced its calendar last month, and the race weekend will take place on May 29-31.

The circuit is currently targeting FIA Grade 1 classification after construction, which began in 2016, was recently completed.

The high-speed circuit has multiple configurations but the full layout includes an uphill final sector with a series of quick-fire corners following a hairpin before heading onto the long main straight.

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Two-time DTM champion Rene Rast said: "We can't wait to go on track. Already now we went a few times around the track and we asked for race cars to race today. In 25 years of racing experience, I've not seen anything like that."

BMW driver Philipp Eng said: "The facility is amazing, I have never seen anything like it before. It's not only the track, but the whole surroundings, and I'm looking forward to racing here next year.

"Especially, the last sector, as a racing driver it is very technical and interesting so we will see spectacular racing here."

The addition of Igora Drive marks the DTM's return to Russia for the first time since 2017, having raced at Moscow Raceway between 2013-17.

Igora Drive is the third new-for-2020 venue on the calendar, joining Monza and former Swedish Grand Prix venue Anderstorp.

During Formula 1's Russian Grand Prix weekend, there had been speculation that the race could move from Sochi to Igora Drive, but Russian officials played down the prospect.

Organisers at Igora Drive confirmed there had been no discussions with F1.

W Series will remain on the DTM's support bill in 2020, with a press release on Thursday confirming it "is expecting to expand its six-race 2019 calendar, remaining committed to partner series DTM, although full details will not be announced until later this year".

2020 DTM calendar

Date Venue
April 24-26 Belgium Zolder
May 15-17 Germany Lausitzring
May 29-31 Russian Federation Igora Drive
June 12-14 Sweden Anderstorp
June 26-28 Italy Monza
July 10-12 Germany Norisring
August 22-23 United Kingdom Brands Hatch
September 4-6 Netherlands Assen
September 11-13 Germany Nurburgring
October 2-4 Germany Hockenheim
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Series DTM
Author Tom Errington