Five questions for Maro Engel.
Lots of thumbs-ups.
How have people reacted to the announcement of your return to the DTM?
Maro Engel: I’ve received lots of thumbs-ups, from colleagues as well as from friends and fans. One or two were a bit surprised, though. Still, it feels really great to be able to surprise people with this news. The DTM is a big challenge. The series has continued to develop since my last DTM race. The way of working has become even more professional, and every detail has been improved. We can really look forward to 2017. More power, a little less downforce, new tyres, the DTM is on the right path.
These changes will not only make driving more fun for us, they will also produce more amazing racing action for spectators. That’s what we want to see in the DTM. We drivers want to battle one another out on track and get involved in exciting scraps.
Plenty of scraps.
What are you most looking forward to in 2017, scrapping with your team-mates or with the opposition?
Maro Engel: I’ve already had plenty of scraps with Edoardo in Macau, so of course, I’m really looking forward to locking horns with him in the DTM, but at the end of the day, we’ll be pulling together, as we’re now team-mates at Mercedes-AMG, that’s what comes first. However, there are a couple of other guys I still know very well, such as Bruno Spengler and Matthias Ekström, for example. You can always get straight down to business with the pair of them, and so far, things have always turned out very well for me in battles with them.
Dubai, Daytona and Bathurst.
After your GT3 outings you met up with your DTM team-mates at the training camp last week. What were your first impressions, and what will you be doing in the next few weeks?
Maro Engel: I joined the guys a bit later because of the race at Bathurst, but it was a great training camp.
We trained hard, had a lot of fun together and bonded as a team. Next, I’m off to Buenos Aires for the Formula E race weekend, and then I’ll see my DTM team-mates again at the Vallelunga tests. But before that, I will be a frequent visitor to HWA in Affalterbach where I’ll be getting myself ready for the season. I just can’t wait for the DTM season to start.
DTM and Formula E.
You’ve got a full diary with your DTM and Formula E commitments. Can we also expect to see you competing in the occasional GT3 race?
Maro Engel: GT3 racing is fantastic, and it’s very dear to my heart. I’m especially looking forward to the 24-hour race at the Nürburgring where we’ll be defending the title we won last year. The Nordschleife is an amazing race track that never fails to pose a new challenge; it’s going to be very special having the number 1 on our car.
If time permits, I’ll try to compete in some other GT races. In particular, the FIA GT World Cup in Macau – that would be another highlight for me. Let’s see what happens during the year ...
Mercedes-AMG brand ambassador.
You’ve been chosen as Mercedes-AMG brand ambassador. What does this appointment mean to you, and what are your responsibilities?
Maro Engel: It is an honour for me, and I am delighted to be even more closely associated with the brand name. Mercedes-AMG has always been the brand with which I identify one hundred percent. For me, Mercedes-AMG cars are an absolute dream, not only on the racetrack but also on the open road. There are many exciting projects ahead; I will continue to work for the AMG Driving Academy, and I’m looking forward to carrying out my responsibilities as a representative and ambassador of the Mercedes-AMG brand at trade fairs and other events. I’m also looking forward to competing in the DTM with the number 63 on my Mercedes-AMG C 63 DTM car.