Hakkinen tries the DTM for size

British Grand Prix winner Mika Hakkinen swapped disciplines for a day at Brno recently to test Mercedes-Benz's CLK DTM racer

Hakkinen tries the DTM for size

The Finn, who lies fifth in the Formula 1 World Championship, satisfied his curiosity about Germany's premier tin-top saloon series under the watchful eye of reigning champion Bernd Schneider.

"I have watched a couple of DTM events on TV and I always wanted to drive such a car myself," said Hakkinen. "It was a great experience for me. The CLK in my Formula 1 car's livery is not only beautiful, it also impressed me with its performance. I did not believe that a touring car is capable of this handling and braking power."

Schneider drove Hakkinen round the Czech circuit for eight laps before they swapped seats and Mika showed him what he could do.

"I was impressed with how quick Mika adapted to the driving style the CLK DTM requires," said Schneider. "He has an incredible feeling for the car."

Hakkinen also chauffeured his wife Erja for a three-lap passenger ride in the Merc, which currently tops the DTM standings in Schneider's hands.

After the maelstrom of retirement stories before Silverstone, Mercedes was quick to deny that Hakkinen is looking for another series to race in.

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