With a thrilling race format, DTM will provide its fans enthralling motor racing, with the well-thought-our regulations making for neutrality and transparency.
The Drag Reduction System allows for a short-time increase of the top speed by reducing the drag of the rear wing. Every driver may use the DRS 36 times per race if his gap to the car ahead amounts to less than a second when crossing the line. As soon as a driver activates the DRS on a lap, three of his activations are deleted. This also is the case if he doesn’t use the other two activations allowed for the respective lap. The reason is simple: according to experience, a driver needs three DRS activations per lap to close in on a driver and pass him. Meanwhile, only one activation uses to be enough to keep a pressurising driver at bay. So, the chaser would consume his activations far faster than the driver ahead of him
The drivers are free to choose the number they like – as far as it still is available. They basically will keep this number throughout their DTM career. Exception is the #1 that is entitled to the defending champion. In the 2017 season, however, reigning champion Marco Wittmann passes on the right to race with the #1 on his car to keep on racing with #11, his lucky number he also had on his car when securing the 2016 title.
From the moment when a car has set the first timed qualifying lap it is subjected to the Parc-Fermé regulations. Up to the start of the race, only a few works and changes on the car may be executed. After the race, all the ranked cars once again are subjected to the Parc Fermé regulations. Then, any changes on the car are prohibited. In the night between race one and two, the mechanics have to observe a stipulated rest period. During this period of time the car will be covered. An exception will be possible only if a car was seriously damaged and has to be repaired to get it ready to race for the next day.
In both races, the drivers have to pit at least once for a complete set of fresh tyres. There’s no time frame for the pit stops, the driver has to decide on his own when he comes in for the tyre change. During the stop, the number of mechanics allowed to work on the car is limited to eight and only one wheel gun is available per side of the car. Pitting during a safety-car period is allowed but this stop won’t count as the obligatory pit stop.
From the 2017 season, both races of a weekend will feature the same distance – 55 minutes plus a complete lap, with one of them being held on Saturday, the other on Sunday. The grid positions for each race are secured in a corresponding 20-minute qualifying session. In addition to the races and the qualifying sessions, each race meeting also includes three 30-minute free practice sessions.
DTM comprises three season rankings: the title ‘DTM Champion’ is awarded the driver with the biggest number of points on his tally. The title ‘DTM Team Champion’ is secured by the team whose two drivers jointly scored the biggest number of points. And all the points scored by the drivers of a brand count for the ‘DTM Manufactures Championship’.
The safety-car is sent out to not have to red flag a race. When the safety-cat is ordered to go out, all the marshals show – up to the end of the safety-car period – waved flags and the ’SC’ board. From this moment, overtaken is prohibited. The safety-car goes out with the flashlights switched on and takes the position ahead of the race leader. On the lap when the safety-car will go in again the yellow flashlights are switched off. On the way to the home straight the field reforms for the so-called Indy start. and the race will be restarted in the Indy format. This means that the field approaches the start-finish in two lines , with the race leader and the drivers in the uneven positions driving on the side of the track that will take them to the inside of turn one. As soon as the leader comes close to the starting line, he determines when to start. As soon as the leader accelerates, the green flag is panned like in the Nascar.
The same number of points will be awarded in every race. For the top-10 positions, points will be awarded according to the following system: 25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1. In addition, the three fastest drivers of the respective qualifying session also will score points: the pole sitter will be awarded three points, the second-fastest two and the third one point. There won’t be extra points for the fastest laps and no drop results.
In the case of a dangerous situation, the race control also can enact a speed limit for certain sections – the so-called slow zone – instead of sending out the safety-car. Should a ‘slow zone’ have been enacted in a certain section, the drivers are informed via radio and via displays at the track side. The top speed in the entire ‘slow zone’ is limited to 80 kph and overtaking is prohibited. Die Slow Zone is abolished when the hazard has been removed and the last car of the field has left the respective section. Compared to the safety-car, the slow-zone has got the advantage that closing in on one another is made impossible and the gaps between the cars consequently remain virtually the same. So, a lead a driver has opened over the competitors won’t be nullified.
The standing-start format is used for both races. The starting grid is formed on staggered rows and according to the result of the respective qualifying session. Prior to the start, the field completes a formation lap, with the drivers completing a lap in the starting order before re-taking their positions on the grid for the official start. During this lap, the drivers work on getting their tyres and brakes to working temperature. Overtaking is prohibited. Cameras survey every single slot on the starting grid to detect any jump start. Jump starts are penalised with drive-thru penalties.
For a DTM race weekend, comprising practice sessions, qualifying sessions and races, every driver has got eight sets of fresh Hankook Ventus slicks available. The number of wet weather tyres for practice, qualifying and races of a weekend is limited to a maximum of six fresh sets of tyres per driver. On the first day of the respective event, the tyres for every driver will be drawn by the scrutineers. After the Saturday practice session every driver has to return to sets of tyres to contest the rest of the weekend with the other six sets. This rule is supposed to prevent the drivers from opting for completing just a few laps in the Friday practice sessions to save tyres.