Ducati MotoGP rider Andrea Dovizioso will make his DTM debut as a guest driver for Audi during the Misano weekend, it has been announced.
Dovizioso will replace Pietro Fittipaldi – who will be busy with Haas in Canadian GP – in the WRT Team Audi Sport for the Misano weekend during June 7-9 weekend, in what will be the MotoGP rider’s maiden DTM race weekend after already completing a test run.
The Italian undertook simulator runs in the lead up to his first track test in the Audi RS 5 DTM car at Audi’s Competence Center Motorsport in Neuburg a. d. Donau on Tuesday, after the DTM’s opening weekend and MotoGP’s Spanish GP.
Dovizioso will have another test at Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli on May 22-23. “I love cars and I feel lucky to be able to race with the Audi RS 5 DTM,” said Dovizioso. “It’s tough to find the time to prepare for it during the MotoGP season.
“But I am really looking forward to compete in such a high-level context as the DTM. The car is amazing, but it’s a different challenge compared with my Desmosedici GP and I need to get prepared, so I did many laps in the simulator before stepping into it for the first time.
“Misano is a special track for every Italian driver and the place where I scored an incredible win last year so I’m very excited and thankful for this opportunity.” The Italian has raced cars before, when he finished second in Lamborghini Super Trofeo’s Pro-Am class in 2016.
“I’m delighted that in Andrea Dovizioso we managed to get a real superstar to race as a guest in the DTM,” said Head of Audi Motorsport Dieter Gass. “MotoGP riders are true heroes in Italy.
“Andrea hails from the Misano area, won the Motorcycle Grand Prix there last year and is going to attract many additional fans. We’re already extremely excited to see how he’s going to fare in his DTM debut.
“That he’s taking time out for the DTM between two MotoGP races is fantastic and not to be taken for granted at all. I’d like to particularly thank Ducati’s CEO Claudio Domenicali and Luigi Dall’Igna, General Manager of Ducati Corse, who agreed to this guest entry.
“That’s a big thing for the DTM and for motorsport in general.” As Gass pointed out, a guest drive for an active MotoGP racer – who is fighting for the title – is a big statement from Ducati as usually the contracts are tight in this regard.