Spengler wants proper DTM farewell race after abrupt BMW exit

Bruno Spengler says he would like to have a formal send-off from the DTM after his abrupt exit from BMW's line-up at the end of the 2019 season

Spengler wants proper DTM farewell race after abrupt BMW exit

BMW has moved Spengler from the DTM to the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, where he has been paired alongside Connor de Phillippi in a Team RLL-run M8 GTE in 2020.

The news about his switch to IMSA was communicated in December, more than two months after the conclusion of the DTM season, which meant that Spengler wasn't aware that the 2019 Hockenheim finale was going to be his last appearance in the series.

The Canadian driver said he has discussed the idea of hosting a farewell event with BMW motorsport boss Jens Marquardt to mark the end of a 15-year career in the DTM, which included winning the 2012 title in his first year with the Bavarian brand.

"Yes, we've already talked about it," Spengler told Sat.1 reporter Eddie Mielke in a video posted on Instagram.

"We don't want to reveal too much yet, but something will come. We've talked about it, and if we do something, it will be nice."

Asked if that meant attending a DTM race this year, Spengler said: "I don't know yet because the calendars have changed a bit. I definitely want to see the DTM fans.

"I will definitely miss the DTM fans very much. But I'm not out of this world and I'll certainly see the DTM fans again as soon as the opportunity arises. That's for sure."

Spengler made his IMSA debut at the Rolex 24 at Daytona in January, where he and de Phillippi were joined by DTM driver Philipp Eng and IndyCar race winner Colton Herta.

The quartet finished fifth in the GTLM class, while the sister BMW of John Edwards, Augusto Farfus, Jesse Krohn and Chaz Mostert took top honours after defeating the two CORE Autosport-run Porsches.

Spengler said he remains "disappointed" with BMW's decision to drop him from its DTM driver line-up, but added that he is now fully focussed on his maiden campaign in IMSA.

"At that moment, as I said then, I was surprised and a little disappointed," he said.

"That's all behind me now already for a while. And after that time I took up my new challenge and was very happy about it.

"I went to America, did a few tests with the team I know from my second place in Daytona and Sebring.

"I felt very welcome. The GT car is a bit of a change for me, but not completely different because I did some tests with it."

"[DTM] was never boring. It was annoying at times and really cool at other times. You can't always have a winning car because the series is so difficult.

"You've got to swallow these years and keep going - and try to learn something from it as a driver and as a team before the car is stronger again."

shares
comments
DTM season-opener plunged into fresh doubt
Previous article

DTM season-opener plunged into fresh doubt

Next article

Rast: F1 refugee Kubica will face "difficult" challenge in DTM

Rast: F1 refugee Kubica will face "difficult" challenge in DTM
The longest-serving Red Bull driver revealing F1’s true brutality Plus

The longest-serving Red Bull driver revealing F1’s true brutality

His day of days in Formula 1 came at Indianapolis in 2005, a day grand prix racing strives to forget. But Patrick Friesacher, the long-serving Red Bull lieutenant, remains active today driving a two-seater that provides ordinary people with a glimpse of an F1 car’s savage potential, including this writer...

Formula 1
Jun 2, 2022
How the DTM has come back stronger from its Norisring nadir Plus

How the DTM has come back stronger from its Norisring nadir

OPINION: Questionable driving standards and farcical team orders meant the DTM's first season under GT3 regulations ended under a cloud. But the organisation has responded firmly by banning team orders and welcomed new manufacturers, making for an intriguing season ahead as new and returning names prepare for battle

DTM
Mar 30, 2022
The remarkable career of a 'classy' champion who rejected politics Plus

The remarkable career of a 'classy' champion who rejected politics

Over two decades as a factory driver with Audi and BMW, Martin Tomczyk earned the respect of team-mates and rivals as a hard but fair racer. After calling time on his racing career, the 2011 DTM champion sat down with Autosport to look back

GT
Mar 5, 2022
The other Hamilton conqueror seeking career revival Plus

The other Hamilton conqueror seeking career revival

On his rise through the ranks before reaching Formula 1, Lewis Hamilton was usually a cut above the rest. But he never truly asserted himself over a Mercedes-backed fellow Briton who traded single-seaters for touring cars and is now seeking new opportunities after a year largely spent on the sidelines

DTM
Dec 18, 2021
How the DTM's shambolic finale poses awkward future questions Plus

How the DTM's shambolic finale poses awkward future questions

OPINION: The scenes at the Norisring as Mercedes used blatant team orders to secure the first DTM title of the new GT3 era totally undermined the credibility of the championship. But as well as overshadowing the season, it also presents uncomfortable questions to series bosses about the direction it is headed in

DTM
Oct 12, 2021
How Audi's new DTM star is channeling Rast to achieve his "childhood dream" Plus

How Audi's new DTM star is channeling Rast to achieve his "childhood dream"

Having learned the ropes in GT3 alongside Rene Rast, Kelvin van der Linde is in line to take up the three-time champion's baton as Audi's new DTM king. From humble origins in South Africa, it's been a remarkable journey so far for the current series leader, but he knows that the 2021 title is a long way from settled just yet

DTM
Sep 18, 2021
The number-crunching behind the new-look DTM's equalisation drive Plus

The number-crunching behind the new-look DTM's equalisation drive

Switching to GT3 regulations marked a fresh start for the DTM in 2021, but it has also drawn a line in the sand against other series using similar cars by engaging AVL Racing to develop a bespoke Balance of Performance system. Here’s how it works

DTM
Jul 23, 2021
The initial verdict on DTM's move to GT3 cars Plus

The initial verdict on DTM's move to GT3 cars

OPINION: Facing collapse last year, the DTM has shifted its philosophy from a championship for silhouette-based touring cars to GT machines not too dissimilar to those racing across multiple series worldwide. But despite some initial BoP-based teething troubles, there were some pleasant findings as the 'new DTM' got underway at Monza

DTM
Jun 22, 2021