Zanardi considers DTM debut
23 October 2012 – Alex Zanardi, now a Paralympian superstar, has pinpointed DTM as the championship if he were to make a return to motor racing in the near future. Using hand controls, his last motorsport action came in World Touring Cars.
Zanardi was last seen in Formula 1 in 1999, suffering a trying season with Williams which ended pointless. Following on from his near-death CART experience in which he lost both legs in September 2001, he joined the WTCC in 2005 and historically took victory in Germany. Three more wins came across the following four seasons.
Before the DTM season finale at Hockenheim on Sunday, Zanardi was present to display the Olympic medals which had been won at Brands Hatch.
“It really was a sensational day,” said Zanardi, who is celebrating his 46th birthday on Tuesday. “I've experienced a lot in my career, but driving in front of the thousands of fans in the Motodrom and presenting my medals was a very special moment; and the fact that BMW and Bruno Spengler have now won the title is just incredible.”
He went on to thank BMW Motorsport for the option of a DTM test and will now consider whether returning to competition is the way to go.
“I am very thankful that they have considered the possibility of a test drive,” he began to sum up. “Along the way, it will necessary to overcome some technical hurdles, including the fact that the DTM cars are very complex, but we shall do that at a later date. Today, the entire team can celebrate - that was a sensational performance.”
With Bruno Spengler having pipped Mercedes’ Gary Paffett to the title, BMW and Schnitzer are now celebrating their first success together for 20 years. In the British Touring Car Championship, the combination took the series by storm as Jo Winkelhock delivered the title in his maiden season of 1993.