Ralf Schumacher and Mercedes will continue their partnership during next seasons championship following the former F1 ace clinching an extension on his current deal.

Schumacher, a veteran of eleven seasons in Formula One - achieving six victories along the way - will now head into his fifth DTM campaign next year.

After a difficult home-coming into the DTM, Schumacher finally made the step forward he was looking for during this season by gaining his first DTM podium finish with a third at Hockenheim during the season opener and later bettering that with a second at the newly-christened Red Bull Ring (formally known as the A1 Ring).

Schumacher is clearly relishing the opportunity to accompany Mercedes during this new era of DTM, with next year's regulation changes and the emergence of BMW whetting the German's appetite.

"DTM is a fantastic championship and, after four years as part of the Mercedes-Benz family, I feel in the best place possible," he said. "So I'm all the more delighted to be starting a new era next year together with Mercedes-Benz.

"With the new technical regulations and the arrival of BMW on the scene as the third premium manufacturer alongside Audi and Mercedes-Benz, DTM has an exciting future."

It has also emerged that Schumacher has been playing a critical role in the development of the DTM AMG Mercedes C-Coupe, something which the younger Schumacher is clearing revelling in.

"I feel privileged to be playing my part in development of the new DTM AMG Mercedes C-Coup?," he said. "My first impressions from testing are positive, and I'm very excited about racing this car next year."

Vice President of Mercedes Motorsport, Norbert Haug looks forward to working with Schumacher once again.

"Ralf Schumacher isn't only the best-known driver in the DTM, he's also one of the most-liked and most successful in international motorsport," he said. "I rate very highly the fact that Ralf walked the difficult road from Formula One to the DTM, boosted the series' popularity and continuously improved until he scored his first podium.

"We and the fans have a lot of enjoyment ahead of us as we watch him racing."
by Simon Evans



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