DTM starts cooperation with GRAND-AM and IMSA
The DTM organisers, ITR, have started a license and cooperation agreement with American GRAND-AM and IMSA. The goal of the cooperation is an American version of the DTM, to start in 2015.
The new series is supposed to run as a part of the United SportsCar Racing weekends, the new series from the recent merger of GRAND-AM and the American Le Mans Series.
“On the heels of our United SportsCar Racing and IMSA announcements, reaching this agreement adds to the momentum we’re experiencing right now. The next steps in this process will involve further discussions with various automotive manufacturers, whose commitment to this concept is essential if a North American DTM-style series is to become reality,” said GRAND-AM President and CEO Ed Bennett.
The cooperation is a further step in the expansion of the DTM regulations internationally, with the Japanese Super GT agreeing on common regulations in October last year to start from the 2014 season.
“The new technical regulations and the formed partnerships represent – for the first time in the history of the sport – a global platform for the manufacturers involved, a platform offering them the opportunity to race – on the same technical basis and with the best global promoters as guarantee for a competitive and attractive platform – in the core markets of North America, Europe and Asia,” said Hans Werner Aufrecht, ITR Chairman.
“In addition to the six German and Japanese manufacturers – Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Honda, Nissan and Toyota – which are already involved, the new cooperation quite obviously also offers a new and extraordinary field of activity for the American premium manufacturers such as Cadillac, Lincoln or Dodge SRT within the framework of future motorsport programs. Now, we have to inform and thrill them together with our new partner GRAND-AM/IMSA and encourage them to get involved.”
Current DTM manufacturer BMW welcomed the announcement of the cooperation with GRAND-AM and IMSA.
“It represents another important step on the way to the internationalisation of DTM. We as BMW are extremely open-minded, regarding these plans. The North American market represents the biggest market area for BMW in general – and the biggest market area for BMW M vehicles, too. BMW has got a great motor-racing tradition in the USA and therefore, we are truly happy about the prospect to also see DTM vehicles racing in the USA, in the future,” said Jens Marquardt, head of BMW Motorsport.