Aston Martin has signed ex-Formula 1 driver Paul di Resta to lead its assault on the DTM for the 2019 season. 

The 2010 DTM champion makes the switch from the Mercedes-HWA squad following the German manufacturer’s withdrawal from the championship at the end of last year. 

Aston Martin joins the series in partnership with R-Motorsport and HWA, making di Resta a prime candidate for a 2019 seat. 

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The 32-year-old Scot, who contested 59 grands prix for Force India and Williams in F1 between 2011 and 2017, said he took little convincing to join Aston Martin’s latest project. 

“To be perfectly honest, I was convinced from my very first meeting with Florian [Kamelger, R-Motorsport team principal] and Andreas [Baenziger],” he explained. 

“We had a 20-minute chat over a cup of coffee in the paddock last year, and I was immediately convinced of their ambition and passion for this project.

“It’s worth remembering that I’ve also worked with HWA since my Formula 3 days, and I strongly believe they’re the stand-out organisation in every series they contest. 

“They were one of the big reasons behind Mercedes’ DTM success, and I’ve got absolute trust and belief that R-Motorsport can do the job.

“After Mercedes’ withdrawal last year, R-Motorsport’s Aston Martin announcement really lifted everyone’s spirits - everyone’s so eager to be part of this, and, believe me, they mean serious business. The whole organisation is totally professional and 100 per cent focused. I think we can do this.”

di Resta, who took three wins en route to finishing third in the 2018 standings, acknowledged the task will not be easy but he is confident Aston Martin can be challenging for race wins from the off. 

“It won’t be an easy task: we’re a relatively small outfit up against two of the best manufacturers in the world, but they need me to help the development of the project,” he added. 

"I know what I can bring to this, and I believe this is going to be good. Yes, we’re late to the party, but with a good pre-season, we can get on top of things. 

“I expect us to be there at the first race challenging for the win. I believe that’s a realistic target, and I think we have to go into the first race with that mentality.”

The 2019 DTM season begins at the Hockenheimring in Germany on May 4. 

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