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
"The star of something big" - evidently a reference to Mercedes' three-pointed star for those car badge buffs out there - was the headline on Autosport's report as the DTM roared back into life at Hockenheim 20 years ago today.
Mercedes driver Bernd Schneider dominated both races from pole, but to dwell on that fact would be to miss the point on a truly significant weekend for motorsport in Germany as the three-year wait for a return of big banger tin-tops - following the demise of the International Touring Car Championship in 1996 - was finally ended. The raucous response of the 56,000-strong crowd told its own story.
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
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
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?
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 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
Does 2000 hold the answers to DTM's current crisis?
DTM News: DTM made the same mistakes as ITC, says Manuel Reuter