The three proven Audi Sport teams Abt Sportsline, Phoenix and Rosberg were once again tasked to field the Audi RS 5 DTM cars in the 2017 season. Their common goal was to let the red diamond shine – the trademark of Audi Sport, resulting in all three DTM titles being awarded to the brand with the four rings by the end of the year.
Audi entered three experienced teams
In making the DTM team assignments, Audi’s Head of Motorsport Dieter Gass opted for a combination of seasoned campaigners and promising teammates: “In Mattias Ekström at ABT, Jamie Green at Rosberg and Mike Rockenfeller at Phoenix, all three teams had their spearheads. These team-driver combinations were also very powerful in the past,” said Gass. The experienced drivers were then paired with their new teammates in the form of Nico Müller at ABT and the two rookies Loïc Duval at Phoenix and the newly crowned champion René Rast at Rosberg.
Audi Sport Team Rosberg
#33 René Rast (D), AUTO BILD MOTORSPORT Audi RS 5 DTM
#53 Jamie Green (GB), Hoffmann Group Audi RS 5 DTM
Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline
#5 Mattias Ekström (S), Red Bull Audi RS 5 DTM
#51 Nico Müller (CH), Playboy Audi RS 5 DTM
Audi Sport Team Phoenix
#77 Loïc Duval (F), Castrol EDGE Audi RS 5 DTM
#99 Mike Rockenfeller (D), Schaeffler Audi RS 5 DTM
“Following his strong guest performance last year at Zandvoort, if not earlier, René (Rast) was my absolute dream campaigner and he really fits our team like a glove. He and Jamie (Green) perfectly complemented each other,” says Arno Zensen, Team Director of Audi Sport Team Rosberg. “It’s always been my wish to have two equally fast drivers in the team, and this year we’ve had that. That both would be battling for the title in the last race, though, I wouldn’t have imagined in my wildest dreams.”
“Congratulations to Audi on the first DTM triple since 2004. Last year, with Edo (Mortara), we were just lacking four points to clinch the title and now three with Eki. That’s very painful and really tough for the team that did a superb job throughout the year,” says Thomas Biermaier, Team Director of Audi Sport Team Abt Sportsline. “Still, it was a tremendous DTM season and an incredibly thrilling finale. We’re already looking forward to 2018. We’re fighters and are going to come back stronger!”
“How strong the Audi RS 5 DTM was this year was especially obvious in the last races when all cars were running with the same weight. Naturally, working with such a fast car is fun. A big thank you for that to Audi,” says Ernst Moser, Team Director of Audi Sport Team Phoenix. “The DTM delivered many tremendous races to the fans. And the full grandstands at the finale at Hockenheim have already whetted our appetite for next year. Phoenix has found its old strength again with Rocky (Mike Rockenfeller). He drove a fantastic season.”