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Rast targets Schneider's DTM title record

Rene Rast says he's targeting Bernd Schneider’s record of five DTM titles as the treble champion aims to cement his legacy in the German category with BMW.

René Rast, Schubert Motorsport, 100th DTM Race

Photo by: Alexander Trienitz

Rast has established himself as one of the best drivers to ever compete in the DTM, winning three titles (2017, ‘19, ‘20) and 25 races since he made his debut with Audi at Zandvoort in 2016.

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The 36-year-old racked up his 100th race start at the Lausitzring earlier this month, making him the third-most experienced driver on the grid after fellow BMW ace Marco Wittmann and Winward Mercedes driver Lucas Auer.

Sitting ninth in the championship after five rounds in his first year with BMW, having had to miss the Zandvoort weekend due to a clash with his McLaren commitments in Formula E, Rast is aware that winning this year’s title is a “mission impossible”.

However, the Schubert driver is keen to add to his championship tally in the coming years and has Mercedes legend Schneider in his sights. He added to his 1995 title with another four in six seasons between 2000 and '06 following the series' reboot.

"Of course, that's the goal," Rast told German broadcaster ran.de. "Bernd has five, I only have three. It will be a bit more difficult this year, but I'm still young."

Rast’s admission that he is gunning for Schneider’s long-held record comes just a few weeks after it was announced that he will be leaving McLaren after just a single-season with the British team in Formula E.

This would leave Rast free to concentrate entirely on his role with BMW in 2024, which will likely include an LMDh programme in the World Endurance Championship along with a continuation of his duties in the DTM.

There are no clashes at present between DTM and WEC next year.

Schneider won his fifth DTM title in 2006, a record Rast has his eye on surpassing

Schneider won his fifth DTM title in 2006, a record Rast has his eye on surpassing

Photo by: Sutton Images

Rast has found it tough to challenge regularly at the front in the DTM this year following his switch from Audi, with a pair of second-place finishes at the Norisring marking his only visits to the podium.

He also failed to score points in three races, which means he wouldn’t have been in the thick of the title fight even if he hadn’t missed the Zandvoort races to compete in the clashing Portland E-Prix.

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At the most recent round at Zandvoort, Rast could finish just eighth and 11th across the two races, while team-mate and reigning champion Sheldon van der Linde managed a best finish of fifth.

"Of course, I would have wished for a little more for my 100th race," said Rast.

“It was obvious that we [BMW] didn't have the conditions this weekend to be competitive.

“I was the 15th best placed BMW driver in qualifying on Sunday - that says it all, I think. In the race I made up a few places but there was nothing else in it."

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