Rast won't defend DTM title in 2021 with full focus on Formula E

Rene Rast has announced that he won't continue in the DTM for the first year of its GT3 era to defend his title

Rast won't defend DTM title in 2021 with full focus on Formula E

Rast successfully overhauled Audi stablemate Nico Muller to clinch his third DTM title last year, becoming the most successful DTM driver for the Ingolstadt-based marque and earning a place among the series' greats.

The German driver's full-time participation in the DTM was never likely after he was signed by Audi to race in Formula E this season, partnering 2016-17 Formula E champion Lucas di Grassi.

Rast has now clarified that he won't return to the DTM after all, concentrating all of his efforts on his first full Formula E campaign after making his debut in the second half of last season in Berlin.

"As much as I like the DTM and as much as I would have liked to compete for an Audi customer team, we decided together that I will only concentrate on Formula E in 2021," the 34-year-old told ran.de.

Rast also cited potential clashes between the DTM and Formula E for his decision.

Although Formula E is yet to issue its full calendar, Autosport understands that at least two rounds between Formula E and the DTM could overlap, while potential changes due to the ongoing pandemic could further complicate matters.

"Here, too, the calendar is still uncertain due to the pandemic, and in addition, the series has now taken on additional importance as the official world championship," said Rast. "That's why I want to play it safe."

Had Rast decided to compete in the DTM this year, he would have likely moved to the Abt Sportsline squad that won last year's teams' title. But with the German driver prioritising Formula E, Muller is now likely to remain with the Abt outfit that he has competed for since 2016 - although an official confirmation regarding his team is yet to be made.

Abt has already announced a two-car Audi R8 LMS attack for the DTM's first year under GT3 regulations, continuing its long-standing relationship with the Ingolstadt-based marque.

shares
comments
BMW to be represented in revamped GT3 era-DTM by Walkenhorst

Previous article

BMW to be represented in revamped GT3 era-DTM by Walkenhorst

Next article

Aston Martin could enter DTM in 2021 having started talks with Racing One

Aston Martin could enter DTM in 2021 having started talks with Racing One
Load comments

About this article

Series DTM
Drivers René Rast
Author Sven Haidinger
The slow-burner threatening to unseat Audi's DTM king Plus

The slow-burner threatening to unseat Audi's DTM king

It's taken him a while to emerge as a consistent title challenger, but in the final year of DTM's Class One rule set, Nico Muller has smoothed the rough edges and has double champion stablemate Rene Rast working harder than ever to keep up in the title race

DTM
Oct 13, 2020
How a DTM failure became an unlikely Nurburgring conqueror Plus

How a DTM failure became an unlikely Nurburgring conqueror

Opel's fortunes in the DTM had taken a turn for the worst by 2003 - hardly the pedigree that suggested it could take on the toughest 24-hour race of them all. But that's exactly what it did

DTM
Sep 23, 2020
The season that revitalised a sleeping giant Plus

The season that revitalised a sleeping giant

On the 20th anniversary of the resumption of hostilities in the DTM, Autosport revisits a classic season that brought a staple of German motorsport back to life with a bang and set in motion the careers of some notable names

DTM
May 28, 2020
Does 2000 hold the answers to DTM's current crisis? Plus

Does 2000 hold the answers to DTM's current crisis?

It's 20 years since the DTM roared back into life at a packed Hockenheim with a back-to-basics approach as the antidote to its high-tech past. Now it's on its knees again, so is it time to recall the lessons learned in 2000?

DTM
May 28, 2020
The last-chance saloon of Germany's forgotten tin-top champions Plus

The last-chance saloon of Germany's forgotten tin-top champions

The Opel Vectra GTS was the last in the line of the marque's DTM challengers, but failed to hit the lofty heights of its predecessors when financial constraints hit

DTM
May 15, 2020
Ranking the 10 best Audi DTM drivers Plus

Ranking the 10 best Audi DTM drivers

Audi last week announced it would be exiting the DTM at the end of 2020, bringing the curtain down on 20 years of continuous participation since the series' reboot in 2000. Autosport's expert panel ranks its 10 best drivers from the period

DTM
May 5, 2020
How the DTM landed itself in crisis Plus

How the DTM landed itself in crisis

Audi's announcement that it will withdraw from the DTM was the latest bodyblow for a series that has lost three manufacturers in as many years. Some major soul-searching will now be required to assess how it can survive

DTM
Apr 28, 2020
The FE cynic who had to accept change in his series Plus

The FE cynic who had to accept change in his series

DTM boss Gerhard Berger was an ardent detractor of Formula E and was reluctant for his series to embrace greener engine technologies. But this cynic's tune has had to change to ensure the DTM's existence in the future of motorsport

DTM
Dec 13, 2019