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Stuttgart - Reigning Blancpain Sprint Series champion Maximilian Götz (28, Germany) will strengthen the squad of Mercedes-Benz drivers in the DTM for the 2015 season. Götz will swap the racing gullwing for the Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM after four successful years in AMG's Customer Sports Programme.
The 28-year-old already has previous experience of a DTM car after completing a test in a DTM Mercedes AMG C-Class at the Lausitzring in September 2013 as a reward for his success with the SLS AMG GT3. He made his debut in the Mercedes-AMG C63 DTM during testing in Jerez de la Frontera last December, 2014.
Götz contested 82 races in the SLS AMG GT3 between 2011 and 2014, securing ten wins, 32 podiums and 60 top-ten finishes in total. He clinched the 2014 Blancpain Sprint Series championship title in the SLS AMG GT3. The previous year, 2013, Götz won the 24-hour race at Spa-Francorchamps and the 1,000 km race at the Nürburgring. He won the ADAC GT Masters championship in 2012.
Mercedes-Benz has a long tradition of developing young racing talent. During their time in Formula 3, a number of drivers, including reigning Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton (MERCEDES AMG PETRONAS), four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel and the youngest winner of a race in DTM history, Pascal Wehrlein, all utilised Mercedes-Benz engines. New opportunities for nurturing young drivers in a systematic manner have now opened up in the AMG Customer Sports Programme since its successful introduction.
"The moment when I first found out that I will be racing in the DTM in 2015 will stay with me for a very long time. It's a mega feeling to know that the success I achieved with different teams over the years during my time with the AMG Customer Sports Programme was being closely monitored by the racing bosses at Mercedes Benz. It also shows that customer sport has top-class drivers and can be a great springboard to bigger things. It's a little bit like a dream come true. I will be doing everything I can to achieve success in the DTM but am also aware that I have a lot to learn this season. I'm now looking forward to the first tests and to working with my new team. Everything else will then follow on from Hockenheim."
Tobias Moers, Chairman of the Board of Management at Mercedes-AMG GmbH:
"We've achieved some sensational success with the SLS AMG GT3 since the Mercedes-AMG Customer Sports Programme was established in 2011, the most recent being a one-two finish at the 24 Hours of Dubai. Having no less than twelve SLS AMG GT3s on the grid there set a new record for us and at the same time indicated just how pleased customer teams are to race our car. The move by Maximilian Götz from the gullwing to the Mercedes AMG C63 DTM is further proof of the success of AMG's Customer Sports Programme and also shows that this programme offers excellent prospects for our customer teams and drivers."
Toto Wolff, Head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport:
"We would like to welcome Maximilian Götz to our DTM team for the 2015 season. Max has achieved many successes with the SLS AMG GT3 in recent years. His fine performance has earned him the opportunity to join the DTM. His step up from the Mercedes-AMG Customer Sports Programme to our DTM team shows the great opportunities that are open to young and successful racing drivers with Mercedes-Benz. The three-pointed star has been promoting young racing drivers in motorsport for many years, and the Mercedes-AMG Customer Sports Programme is another opportunity to support young drivers in addition to our involvement in Formula 3."
Source: Daimler AG