Hankook begins DTM tyre supply
Hankook got underway as exclusive tyre supplier to the DTM championship at the series’ 2011 season launch in Wiesbaden, Germany on April 10. The tyre maker says the start of its season as partner to the popular international touring car championship “marks the beginning of a new era in the company's dedication to international motor sport.” Prior to its DTM involvement, Hankook was primarily engaged in endurance racing.
“We are pleased that it is finally getting underway,” said Jin-Wook Choi, Hankook’s executive vice-president and European boss of Hankook Tire. “We have prepared ourselves very well for the DTM and are looking forward to a season with the best duels motor sport has to offer. As one of the most professional race series, DTM motor sport presents itself at the highest level. With Audi and Mercedes-Benz, two absolute motor sport heavyweights are taking part. The cars are genuine high end racers. The drivers and teams are the best on offer in international motor sport. I am promising myself an extremely exciting time.”
“Manufacturing the right racing tyres is an art that requires lots of experience,” added Manfred Sandbichler, director of Motor Sport at Hankook Tire Europe. “Our tyre constructors are some of the best in the world and have a passion for technical challenges, as certainly can be found in the DTM. Before the start of the first race, we proved that we are capable of meeting the quality standards and the pace of the DTM. Our years of experience from other race series are of course an advantage.”
The contract concluded between Hankook and the DTM umbrella organisation ITR was settled in January 2011 and runs over a three-year period. It takes the current rules up until the end of 2011 into account, as well as the rules valid from 2012 onwards and covers, alongside the equipment of the current Audi and Mercedes-Benz teams, other vehicle manufacturers, including BMW from 2012.