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Vietoris, van der Zande join the DTM

Christian Vietoris Mercedes has added single seater racers Christian Vietoris and Renger van der Zande to its DTM line-up for the 2011 season.

The pair will both drive 2008-spec cars in their rookie seasons, where they will fill the spaces vacated in Mercedes' line-up by reigning DTM champion and current Force India Formula 1 driver Paul di Resta, and China's Franky Cheng.

Vietoris is set to combine his DTM programme with a second year of GP2, where he was in testing action with Racing Engineering this week at Silverstone.

"The switch from a single seater to a touring car is a huge challenge, but I feel I have adjusted quickly to the C-class during the tests and settled in well," said Vietoris.

"DTM is one of the most prestigious racing series in the world. I would like to continue along my learning curve and be successful in my debut season."

Van der Zande has had a long association with Mercedes dating back to his time racing in Formula 3. The Dutchman has been keen on making the switch to the DTM for some time.

"Obtaining a DTM cockpit with Mercedes is a dream come true," he said. "I know that I face a big challenge, but I will be doing my best to acclimatise myself and to master the C-class in the fastest possible time."

David Coulthard, Susie Stoddart and Maro Engel will drive the three remaining 2008-spec Mercedes in this year's DTM.

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