All 18 DTM drivers for the 2019 season have now been announced.
The final driver was revealed today, with Pietro Fittipaldi joining Audi Sport Team WRT. He’ll be teammates with Jonathan Aberdein.
WRT is a new name in the DTM sport, but certainly not at Audi Sport. WRT has their base in Belgium, and has raced with Audi cars for nearly ten years, with the R8 LMS GT3 being the primary car, but more recently also the RS 3 LMS TCR car.
They have been allowed to run two Audi R5 DTM cars in 2019, parallel to the Audi Sport works teams Abt, Phoenix and Rosberg. Officially they are privateers, with not quite as high status as the six other cars – but since all DTM cars are brand new for this season, with a 4-cylindre turbo engine and new aero, it will be fully updated cars for them as well.
Jonathan Aberdein is from South Africa, and primarily raced in single-sseaters so far. He is the 2016/17 Formula 4 UAE Champion, and has also done a couple of season in the German ADAC Formula 4 series. He raced in FIA Formula 3 European Championship last year, where he got three podiums throughout the year, but finished outside top-10 in the standings. Now it’s time to try out touring cars for him.
Closed cars are nothing new for Pietro Fittipaldi – he just doesn’t have the best of memories from them yet. The 22 year-old Brazilian won the World Series Formula V8 3,5 Championship in 2017, and then headed towards Indycar. He managed to do one round, before he should help out the DragonSpeed team in the FIA World Endurance Championship at Spa Francorchamps. He had a huge crash in the qualifying for them, breaking both legs. That prevented him from starting in the Indy 500, and had to sit out most of the Indycar season, but did make a comeback later in the year. He managed to get a top-10 result, but not enough to keep the seat for this year.
Other than his DTM programme, Pietro will also fulfil his job as a test- and reserve driver for HAAS in Formula 1. His younger brother, Enzo Fittipaldi, is making his way through the single seater ranks too, and is currently a Ferrari Development Driver. As a small side note, they are grand children of Emerson Fittipaldi.
The DTM teams have been testing at Lausitzring this week, with Audi Sport being the fastest all four days, ahead of BMW and Aston Martin.
The season starts for real on 4-5 May 2019 at Hockenheim.