Turner enthusiastic over DTM

Mercedes driver Darren Turner has completed his first stint testing the Mercedes CLK DTM touring car at Oschlerslaben in Germany, and the Englishman was left bubbling after the experience.

Turner enthusiastic over DTM

"The car is fantastic to drive," he claimed. "It's great fun - probably one of the most driveable cars I've ever driven," he added.

The five-litre V8 machines are gaining the approval of the drivers for their performance and tractability, as opposed to the highly-strung, and relatively low-performance Super Touring class that has held sway in Europe since the early 90s.

"It's going well," claimed Turner, "but it's the first time I've run in the car, so I've had to adjust a bit."

The test is the first time many of the drivers in the brand new series have run against each other in anger, but the Opel and Mercedes team performances have been masked to a certain degree by driver sharing, and few people running on new tyres at the same time.

"I was six tenths of the pace this morning," said Turner, "but I was on old tyres. People have been swapping cars, and the track has been slower this afternoon, so it's been difficult to see just who's where."

Merecedes and Opel each had four cars present at the test, but while Mercedes brought all their drivers, necessitating a lot of juggling of cars, Opel did not bring the full complement of pilots.

Former McLaren AUTOSPORT Young Driver of the Year Turner handed over the CLK to team mate Pedro Lamy in the afternoon. Turner is far from fazed at having the ex-F1 driver as his team mate, and is looking forward to the challenge.

"It's good that Lamy is quite well regarded as it gives me something to focus on," claimed Turner.

The DTM has one more test session, at Hockenheim, before the season starts. Most of the drivers have yet to gain sufficient experience of the brand new cars, so it seems the motorsport world will have to wait to see who will gain the upper hand in the reborn German Touring Car series.


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