What's new in the DTM 2015

RACE FORMAT 

In the 2015 season, DTM will provide the spectators a new race format with two races of equal value per weekend, thus becoming even more attractive for both the crowds on site and the TV audience. All the race meetings will feature a championship round on Saturday and a second on Sunday, with full championship points being awarded for both races. On both days, the drivers will have to contest a 20-minute qualifying session that will be crucial for the grid positions for the following race.

Nonetheless, there are differences between the Saturday and the Sunday races: the duration and the number of pit stops. On Saturday, the race will be over after 40 minutes plus a full lap, with tyre changes not being obligatory. This means that a driver may cover the full race distance on one set of tyres – but doing so will represent a special challenge. Meanwhile, the race duration on Sunday amounts to 60 minutes plus a full lap and a stop for a tyre change is mandatory for every driver.

TYRES

The times of two different tyre compounds that had to be used in a race are history. The softer option tyres won’t be used any more. From 2015, all the qualifying sessions and races will be contested on a control tyre supplied by DTM’s long-term tyre partner Hankook. This makes the course of the race clearer and easier to understand for the spectators, with the spectacular obligatory pit stop remaining a part of the equation, nevertheless.

The number of the tyre sets available for a car in dry conditions for the two qualifying sessions and the two races will be reduced from five to four per weekend. This step forces teams and drivers to opt for a clever strategy when it comes to portioning their tyre contingents, thus increasing the excitement. 

OBLIGATORY PIT STOPS

The race on Saturday will be contested without an obligatory pit stop 

while the drivers have to come in for an obligatory stop in the Sunday round. In this stop, all the four 

tyres have to be changed. The stop has to be made during the second third of the race. Obligatory pit stops mustn’t be made during a safety-car period. When the safety-car comes in, the drivers have got five laps to come in for their obligatory pit stops. This also is the case if the stop should be made outside of the prescribed pit-stop window, in this case. Since the 2012 season, refuelling during the race has been prohibited for safety reasons.   

QUALIFYING

The qualifying format was changed, for the 2015 season. Prior to each race, the drivers have to contest a 20-minute qualifying he is going to complete as well as how many sets of tyres available to him he wants to use. The pole is secured by the driver who set the fastest lap time.

START

The standing-start format is used for both races. The starting grid is formed on staggered rows and according to the result of the respective qualifying session. Prior to the start, the field completes a formation lap, with the drivers completing a lap in the starting order before re-taking their positions on the grid for the official start. During this lap, the drivers work on getting their tyres and brakes to working temperature. Overtaking is prohibited. Cameras survey every single slot on the starting grid to detect any jump start. Jump starts are penalised with drive-thru penalties. 

DRS

To increase the number of overtaking manoeuvres, the use of the DRS (Drag Reduction System) has been extended. The system now may be used three times per lap, if a driver’s gap to his rival driving ahead of him amounts to less than a second when crossing the start/finish line. To date, using the DRS was allowed only once per lap. Furthermore, the rear wing now may be lowered by 18 degrees instead of the 16 degrees allowed so far. This reduces the drag even more and increases the top speed and, consequently, the chance of a successful overtaking manoeuvre.

PARC-FERMÉ

After having completed the first timed qualifying lap, the vehicles are subjected to the Parc-Fermé regulations.  Up to the start of the race, any changes on the cars are prohibited. After the race, all the cars that were scored again are subjected to the Parc-Fermé regulations, with any changes on the car being prohibited. Between race one and race two, the mechanics have to comply with a defined rest period. In this period of time, the cars remain covered. 

PERFORMANCE-WEIGHTS

Performance weights have been used since the beginning of the 2014 season. The season kick-off at Hockenheim will be contested by all the cars with a weight of 1120kg. Depending on the results, a driver has to take aboard a maximum of 20kg and mustn’t get rid of more than 15kg. There won’t be any weight changes executed between the two rounds of a race weekend. The changes caused by the results secured on a given weekend only will come into effect in the following event. The performance weights are assigned according to the following format: the race winner and all the drivers that are racing for the same manufacturer and made it to the top 10 will have to take an additional 5kg aboard, while those drivers racing for the same manufacturer who didn’t make it to the top 10 will have to cope with 2.5kg performance weight, for the next race meeting. For the vehicles of the second-best brand, the weight will remain unchanged. Those drivers of the third-best brand who made it to the top 10 may get rid of 2.5kg and those who didn’t make it to the top 10 may contest the following race weekend with 5kg less aboard their cars. Should all the three brands make it to the podium, in a race, the weight assignment remains unchanged. The results of the two races of a weekend will be cleared and added respectively and the performance-weight result will come into effect only on the following race weekend.  

EXPLAINED IN FEW WORDS:

The new race format in the 2015 season provides for two races per weekend.

 

SATURDAY:

·      Qualifying for Race 1 (20 minutes)

·      Race 1: 40 minutes + 1 lap

·      Full points awarded

·      Use of DRS permitted three times per lap 

       (must be within one second of the car ahead)

·      No mandatory pit stop

·      One tyre compound only

       (Seven sets of tyres per driver per weekend, four for Qualifying & Race)

 

SUNDAY:

·      Qualifying for Race 2 (20 minutes)

·      Race 2: 60 minutes + 1 lap

·      Full points awarded

·      Use of DRS permitted three times per lap

       (must be within one second of the car ahead)

·      One mandatory pit stop (tyre change)

·      One tyre compound only

       (Seven sets of tyres per driver per weekend, four for Qualifying & Race)