Mattias Ekström is saying goodbye to his many fans as a guest entrant in the first two races of the 2018 DTM season at Hockenheim. During the winter break the 39-year-old Audi driver from Sweden, who became DTM Champion in 2004 and 2007, had decided to quit the popular touring car racing series. In 2018 Mattias Ekström is fully concentrating on the FIA World Rallycross Championship in which he has been competing with his own team since 2014 and that he won in 2016.


In an interview with Dave Richardson, the DTM’s international voice, Mattias Ekström, in front of many of his numerous trophies at Audi in Neuburg, shared some farewell thoughts after 17 successful years in the DTM.

“I was and continue to be determined in anything I do.”
 
“I’ll never forget how as a fan I received my first autograph from Jockel Winkelhock.”

“If you can’t find a solution to reach your goal one way, you’ll find it another way.”
“Motorsport was good to me in many ways.”
 
“Most of the races I drove really well I didn’t win.”
 
“I’m saying goodbye, but the door is still open.”
 
“My best DTM teammate was Laurent Aiello.”

The farewell races at Hockenheim will be DTM races number 196 and 197 for Mattias Ekström. He celebrated his DTM premiere in 2001 at the wheel of an Abt Audi TT-R at Hockenheim. The first of his total of 23 DTM race wins the Swede clinched at Zandvoort (the Netherlands) in 2002. Most recently, Ekström mounted the top step of the DTM podium at Spielberg (Austria) in 2017.

Profile

Date of birth: 14 July 1978
Place of birth: Falun (Sweden)
Residence: Munich (Germany)
Marital status: single (partner Heidi), one son (Mats), one daughter (Hanna)
Height/weight: 1.83 m/79 kg

DTM successes 

2 drivers’ championship titles (2004, 2007)
23 race wins
20 pole positions
18 fastest race laps
1,219 points

(making him Audi’s most successful DTM campaigner)