David Coulthard to bow out at DTM season finale in Hockenheim
David Coulthard will line up on the grid for the final time as a DTM driver at the DTM season finale in Hockenheim (19th to 21st October 2012). The former Formula 1 driver is ending his DTM career after three seasons and 33 races in order to concentrate more on his role as a Formula1 expert and commentator for the BBC, the British Broadcasting Corporation, in addition to his other personal and business interests. The 41-year-old Scot has been employed in that capacity at Formula 1 races since 2009 and his opinions are valued by TV audiences and fellow pundits.
Coulthard will remain part of the Mercedes-Benz family as an AMG brand ambassador. He has been busy in this role at press and customer events since 2011, answering queries and chatting with guests. In addition, he has supported AMG’s development team in certain test activities.
Formula 1 World Championship runner-up in 2001, Coulthard moved to the DTM for the 2010 season and was immediately a big hit with fans. He secured his first DTM point at the 2010 season finale competing at Shanghai’s street circuit, where he posted the fastest lap. In the 32 DTM races that the Scot has contested so far, he has secured 16 points and twice posted fastest race lap. He was in third place on the second row of the grid in Valencia last year. Coulthard achieved his best DTM result of the season with fifth place in the season’s showpiece event at the Norisring.
From 1994-2008, Coulthard contested 246 Formula 1 races prior to joining the world’s most popular touring car series. He achieved twelve of his 13 Grand Prix wins in a McLaren Mercedes, including the first victory in the new Silver Arrow era on the 9th March 1997 in Melbourne, Australia. Coulthard, along with team-mate Mika Häkkinen, won the Constructors’ Championship for McLaren Mercedes in 1998, and was runner-up in the world championship in 2001.
For years now, Coulthard has campaigned unstintingly for the Wings for Life Foundation. In his capacity as ambassador, he is a major force in driving the initiative forward worldwide, generating funds for research projects with his hard work. The nationally recognised, not-for-profit foundation was set up in 2004 by Heinz Kinigadner and Dietrich Mateschitz and promotes research into finding a cure for paraplegia caused by spinal cord injuries.
David Coulthard: “I am looking forward to the final race of what has been an exciting season in the DTM. The weekend will be my final opportunity to compete at this level as I will stop racing in the DTM to concentrate on my developing off-track businesses and of course my family. I will continue to be part of the Mercedes family through my role as an AMG brand ambassador. I would like to thank first of all Norbert Haug and his team at Mercedes Motorsport for providing the opportunity, Deutsche Post for their support and their willingness to allow the Wings for Life Foundation to have promotional space on the car, which has helped raise awareness and funding for the research into spinal cord injuries. Thank you, as well, to the HWA and Mücke teams for patiently helping me with the transition from single-seaters to touring cars, and of course to the people who make professional sport sustainable, the fans. I have enjoyed the last three years and I wish the organizers and competitors in DTM continued growth and success with the championship.”
Norbert Haug, Vice President Mercedes-Benz Motorsport: “David is our first F1 winner of the modern era and that victory on 9th March 1997 in Melbourne ensures his place in our motorsport history. David drove successfully for us and our partner McLaren during nine Formula 1 seasons, and still today he is one of the most popular racing drivers in the world. David’s involvement in the DTM has been good for him and for the championship – he is skilled on the race track, and eloquent and analytical in his TV work and as an AMG brand ambassador. He has been a successful member of the Mercedes family for over a decade and a half, and will remain so after his retirement from active racing. An abbreviation from the racing world best summarises what I want to say to David on behalf of everybody: TD – but this time, it stands for ‘Thanks, David’.”