Leading Mercedes DTM drivers want regulation changes for 2016

Mercedes DTM drivers Gary Paffett, Paul di Resta and Robert Wickens have called for changes to the series' sporting regulations

Leading Mercedes DTM drivers want regulation changes for 2016

Mercedes DTM drivers Gary Paffett, Paul di Resta and Robert Wickens have called for changes to the series' sporting regulations.

With each event on the calendar to again feature two races following last year's format overhaul, a number of specifics are still being discussed.

Race distances will remain the same - 40 minutes on Saturday and 60 on Sunday - as will tyre rules and Hankook's control compound.

Separate qualifying sessions will still be held for each race, but having been all-in, 20-minute affairs in 2015, they could yet be tweaked this year.

Discussions on the use of DRS in races (drivers were allowed three opportunities per lap when within one second of the car in front last year) and performance weights are also continuing.

"The DTMDA [drivers' association] has been working quite hard with the ITR and DMSB to improve the racing throughout the whole field and throughout the whole race," drivers' association representative Paffett said.

"Changes to the regulations with regards to DRS usage, for instance, to try to make it a bit more of an overtaking tool, rather than just a tool to follow other cars.

"Certainly there are some minor tweaks we are after, but I think we can stay away from any big changes, because otherwise you are just going to end up confusing too many people."

There were few fans of the performance-weight system last year and changes appear certain.

One possible outcome is that the ballast will be allocated for each race, rather than an entire event, following a number of 2015 weekends dominated by one manufacturer.

In the most-extreme example, BMW swept the top seven, and then the top five in the two races at Zandvoort.

Di Resta said: "Races like Zandvoort, where you had the BMWs all light and at the front and controlling the races - switching the weights from Saturday to Sunday would make it a little bit more even for the next day.

"So there's not a guaranteed two great results, you would have to work quite hard for it."

CHANGE TO POINTS SYSTEM ALSO FLAGGED

DTM points are awarded to the top 10 finishers in each race, and that system is set to be retained this year.

Wickens, though, would like to see the points handed to more of the 24 drivers.

"It would help improve racing throughout the field if we had more people fighting for points," he said.

"It would be better for the fans and better for us as well."

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