From MotoGP to DTM; Dovizioso drives BMW GT3

From MotoGP to DTM; Dovizioso drives BMW GT3

Former MotoGP rider Andrea Dovizioso tested a BMW M4 GT3 with Project 1 last week to determine if he was ready to take on DTM this season.

Dovizioso shared an M4 GT3 with factory BMW driver and two-time DTM winner Marco Wittmann at Hockenheim on March 28 and 29 for his first experience driving a GT3 car.

Project 1 has already secured Wittmann to spearhead its DTM campaign, and the squad has been seeking for a second driver to round out its lineup for the 2023 season.

After being invited for the two-day test at Hockenheim, Dovizioso, who had impressed during a guest trip in an Audi Class 1 car back in 2019, was seen as a favorite for the seat. However, given the Italian’s impending challenges, a race berth now appears unlikely.

Wittmann served as a benchmark for the 37-year-old due to his considerable DTM experience with BMW. In contrast to Dovizioso, who could only improve to 1m41.812s in his final stint, Wittmann was able to set a fastest time of 1m37.712s in the car driven by Sheldon van der Linde, who won the DTM championship last year.

Although having significantly improved from a time of 1m43.642s during his first stint, it put the Italian 4.1s off Wittmann’s best performance.

The discrepancy in lap times suggests that Dovizioso has a high learning curve to overcome in GT3 equipment, where he is a novice, before he is prepared to compete well in the DTM.

Some people find it particularly challenging to get used to driving assistance, as GT3 cars do include traction control and ABS, making them ideal for beginners.

That might be one of the factors that contributed to Dovizioso’s relative ease in the more aerodynamically effective Class 1 car at Misano in 2019, where he finished 1.319s behind polesitter Rene Rast.

It should be mentioned that he performed a test run at Audi Sport’s Neuburg facility and two days of testing at Misano in order to get ready for his racing debut.

With preseason testing set to begin at Spielberg on April 15–16, Project 1 is now in a race against time to secure a second driver for 2023.

The team and BMW have been under pressure from DTM’s new owner, the ADAC, to sign its drivers in time for the test.

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