DTM

Hakkinen tests Mercedes DTM

Former F1 double world champion Mika Hakkinen has tested a Mercedes touring car at the Lausitzring but the Finn competing in the German Touring Car (DTM) series for the manufacturer is not planned. Hakkinen, who was champion with McLaren in 1998...

Former F1 double world champion Mika Hakkinen has tested a Mercedes touring car at the Lausitzring but the Finn competing in the German Touring Car (DTM) series for the manufacturer is not planned. Hakkinen, who was champion with McLaren in 1998 and 1999, is interested in the DTM and the test fired rumours of him making a racing comeback.

However, Mercedes motorsport director Norbert Haug said there are no plans yet for anything else. Hakkinen and Haug, of course, know each other from Mika's years at McLaren and the DTM is something else they have in common.

"This season Mika became a real fan of the DTM, watching it on TV, and we offered him the opportunity to test the current C class," said Haug, according to Reuters. "This has now happened at the Lausitzring where he was driving yesterday and today."

"He has lost nothing from his speed but there is no further agreement."

In the summer Hakkinen was rumoured to be thinking of an F1 comeback but that now seems unlikely to happen. He has also tried his hand at rallying since retiring from F1 and appears to be missing racing.

Two former F1 drivers compete in the DTM; Jean Alesi for Mercedes and Heinz-Harald Frentzen for Opel. While the F1 refugees head for the touring cars, current DTM youngsters have been attracting interest from the pinnacle of motorsport.

Mercedes drivers Gary Paffett and Christijan Albers have recently been linked with F1 tests and Albers is due to try out for Jordan this winter. Sauber was interested in Paffett but since the Swiss squad signed Jacques Villeneuve for 2005 it seems that Paffett has lost out.

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