Premiere of the Mercedes-Benz driver line-up for the 2009 DTM with 210,000 spectators at the Konigsallee in the centre of Dusseldorf A record crowd of 210,000 at Dusseldorf's shopping street Konigsallee attended the DTM's start for the 2009 ...
Premiere of the Mercedes-Benz driver line-up for the 2009 DTM with 210,000 spectators at the Konigsallee in the centre of Dusseldorf
A record crowd of 210,000 at Dusseldorf's shopping street Konigsallee attended the DTM's start for the 2009 season. The DTM presentation four weeks prior to the season opener in Hockenheim was the fourth one in a row in Dusseldorf. For the first time in 2009, all eight Mercedes-Benz DTM drivers together introduced themselves to the public.
- Driving the AMG Mercedes C-Class: The 2008 DTM runner-up Paul Di Resta (AMG Mercedes C-Class) and Gary Paffet (Salzgitter AMG Mercedes C-Class) drove the racing version of the AMG Mercedes C-Class around an 800-metre long temporary circuit.
- Safety first: For the DTM and other series, an 800-metre long circuit has been built at the Konigsallee. It was surrounded by 1.500-metre long steel walls, 200 metres of concrete walls and 2.5 kilometres of fencing. 200 security staff members cared for the spectators' safety.
- Attractive DTM: For the fourth time in a row since 2006, Dusseldorf hosted the DTM presentation and thus holds the record for this event. Before that, the DTM season presentation had been held twice each in Hamburg (2004 and 2005) and in the amusement park Europapark Rust (2002 and 2003). The season premieres in 2000 and 2001 were held in Berlin and Hockenheim respectively. Last year, Dusseldorf attracted 200,000 spectators and exceeded all previous presentations by far.
- Racing atmosphere in the city: The drivers entertained the audience with engine sound. They signed autographs for the spectators around the circuit and in the paddock and, during the new E-Class's presentation, they were available for interested visitors as expert Mercedes-Benz consultants. Live concerts of the groups Reamonn and The Rattles rounded off the entertaining programme.
- Sportschau live from Dusseldorf: German channel ARD reported from the presentation during their regular Sunday's show Sportschau. The report gave a foretaste to the ARD's live broadcasts of the 2009 DTM season when they will show all 10 Saturday's qualifyings from usually 13:30 until 14:30 h and all Sunday's races from 13:45 until 15:20 h.
Representing the Mercedes-Benz driver team, Ralf Schumacher and racing lady Susie Stoddart summed up their impressions from the event:
Ralf Schumacher (33/Germany), 2009 Trilux AMG Mercedes C-Class: "My second DTM presentation was again an impressive experience. The fans here in Dusseldorf demonstrate great enthusiasm which will motivate us for the upcoming season even more. I had a lot of fun -- it's really great."
Susie Stoddart (26/Scotland), 2008 TV Spielfilm AMG Mercedes C-Class: "Dusseldorf is top class. It's hard to believe how enthusiastic the fans are about the DTM. My hand hurts from signing autographs; however, the most important thing is that the fans enjoy it -- that's what we are here for."
Norbert Haug, Vice President Mercedes-Benz Motorsport (live in the DTM press conference via TV from the Chinese Grand Prix): "I send best regards from the Formula 1 Grand Prix in Shanghai to the DTM and all the spectators in Dusseldorf. Unfortunately, both events take place on the same day, but I am sure that our team made a first class appearance for the audience. We expect an exciting DTM season and hope for packed grandstands at the season opener in Hockenheim in four weeks. We promise first class sport at affordable prices."