For many years, the Red Bull-backed Audi of Mattias Ekstrom was easily one of the most recognisable cars in the DTM, with the energy drinks giant becoming synonymous with the success of the two-time champion during their 16 years together in the series. So, when Ekstrom announced his exit from the DTM at the end of the 2017 season, it perhaps came as little surprise that Red Bull followed suit a few months later, pulling out as a sponsor of both the ex-Ekstrom Audi slot and Marco Wittmann's BMW.
But Red Bull's absence from the DTM has turned out to be short-lived, and it's back in the revamped GT3-based series this year with a team of its own. One of the operation's two AF Corse-run Ferraris will carry the famous red-and-blue colour scheme of the Red Bull brand, while the other 488 GT3 will sport the fan-favourite AlphaTauri livery also seen in Formula 1.
His day of days in Formula 1 came at Indianapolis in 2005, a day grand prix racing strives to forget. But Patrick Friesacher, the long-serving Red Bull lieutenant, remains active today driving a two-seater that provides ordinary people with a glimpse of an F1 car’s savage potential, including this writer...
OPINION: Questionable driving standards and farcical team orders meant the DTM's first season under GT3 regulations ended under a cloud. But the organisation has responded firmly by banning team orders and welcomed new manufacturers, making for an intriguing season ahead as new and returning names prepare for battle.
Over two decades as a factory driver with Audi and BMW, Martin Tomczyk earned the respect of teammates and rivals as a hard but fair racer. After calling time on his racing career, the 2011 DTM champion sat down with Motorsport.com to look back.
On his rise through the ranks before reaching Formula 1, Lewis Hamilton was usually a cut above the rest. But he never truly asserted himself over a Mercedes-backed fellow Briton who traded single-seaters for touring cars and is now seeking new opportunities after a year largely spent on the sidelines.
OPINION: The scenes at the Norisring as Mercedes used blatant team orders to secure the first DTM title of the new GT3 era totally undermined the credibility of the championship. But as well as overshadowing the season, it also presents uncomfortable questions to series bosses about the direction it is headed in.
Having learned the ropes in GT3 alongside Rene Rast, Kelvin van der Linde is in line to take up the three-time champion's baton as Audi's new DTM king. From humble origins in South Africa, it's been a remarkable journey so far for the current series leader, but he knows that the 2021 title is a long way from settled just yet.
Switching to GT3 regulations marked a fresh start for the DTM in 2021, but it has also drawn a line in the sand against other series using similar cars by engaging AVL Racing to develop a bespoke Balance of Performance system. Here’s how it works.
OPINION: Facing collapse last year, the DTM has shifted its philosophy from a championship for silhouette-based touring cars to GT machines not too dissimilar to those racing across multiple series worldwide. But despite some initial BoP-based teething troubles, there were some pleasant findings as the 'new DTM' got underway at Monza
Paffett explains decision to skip two DTM rounds
DTM targeting Autumn date for postponed Norisring round