Home run for Bleekemolen

Holland's Jeroen Bleekemolen has targeted a solid finish in this weekend's round of the DTM at his home circuit at Zandvoort this weekend now that he has got his hands on up-to-date equipment

Home run for Bleekemolen

Bleekemolen and his OPC Euroteam outfit will race an Opel Vectra GTS V8 for the first time this weekend having used a year-old Astra V8 Coupé so far. He tested the car at the Pannoniaring in Hungary a fortnight ago.

"Being able to drive a new car in front of my home crowd is just great," he said. "But you have to bear in mind that the car is entirely new, both for my team and for myself, whereas all the other Opel teams and drivers have been running with this car all season. It is nice to be able to drive in front of a home crowd for once. The track is almost in my back yard!"

Opel required a ruling from the DTM Commission, which includes rivals Audi and Mercedes, to allow Bleekemolen to make the change, as it required a new engine that would otherwise have forced him to start at the back of the grid.

Opel's Volker Strycek explained: "The DTM regulations allow a car change without further ado. During the course of the season, however, any two-car team is only allowed to use three engines. So, in fact, we would have had to switch the engine from the Astra into the Vectra.

"The dimensions of the engine, however, prevented us from doing so. Therefore, we had to find another solution. Our colleagues from Audi and Mercedes-Benz approved Jeroen's switch to a Vectra GTS V8 with a new engine, without any further consequences for him."

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