“Roll Out a Red Carpet” – DTM Manager Floats Interest in Welcoming Raikkonen & Vettel

Published 09/14/2021, 8:39 AM EDT
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA – MARCH 15: (L-R front) Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Ferrari, Kimi Raikkonen of Finland and Ferrari, Nico Rosberg of Germany and Mercedes GP, Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP, Daniel Ricciardo of Australia and Infiniti Red Bull Racing, Daniil Kvyat of Russia and Infiniti Red Bull Racing and Felipe Massa of Brazil and Williams, (L-R middle) Jenson Button of Great Britain and McLaren Honda, Kevin Magnussen of Denmark and McLaren Honda, Nico Hulkenberg of Germany and Force India, Sergio Perez of Mexico and Force India, Max Verstappen of Netherlands and Scuderia Toro Rosso and Carlos Sainz of Spain and Scuderia Toro Rosso, (L-R back) Romain Grosjean of France and Lotus, Pastor Maldonado of Venezuela and Lotus, Marcus Ericsson of Sweden and Sauber F1, Felipe Nasr of Brazil and Sauber F1, Will Stevens of Great Britain and Manor Marussia and Roberto Merhi of Spain and Manor Marussia pose on the grid for the drivers’ photograph before the Australian Formula One Grand Prix at Albert Park on March 15, 2015 in Melbourne, Australia. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images) // Getty Images/Red Bull Content Pool // P-20150315-00071 // Usage for editorial use only // Please go to www.redbullcontentpool.com for further information. //

Kimi Raikkonen will leave Formula One at the end of the 2021 season. He has decided to retire from the pinnacle of motorsport after spending almost two decades in the sport. Although it looks like after retiring from F1, Kimi would return to the premier class of racing like DTM. In fact, the series manager Frederic Elsner revealed he would love to welcome legends such as Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel if they decide to join the series.


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As reported by Speedweek, Elsner stated that if Raikkonen decides to race in DTM, he would welcome the Finn in grand fashion. And while he knows having F1 stars race in the series is great, he knows DTM can build their own stars.

“I would roll out a red carpet for him home (about Raikkonen).

About Vettel, he added, Sebastian Vettel would also be great. These are names we want in the series.”

Formula One F1 – Dutch Grand Prix – Circuit Zandvoort, Zandvoort, Netherlands – September 2, 2021 Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel during the FIA Press Conference Pool via REUTERS/Kenzo Tribouillard

But Elsner clearly said that it is not up to him to call them to DTM.

“It is presumptuous to say: ‘We want this one. It is not in our hands. You have to create a good product, we have to develop as well as possible, then things like that happen by themselves. 

‘They don’t come because you call them, but because the series is right, the competition is right; the marketing is right,” said the DTM manager. (Translated via Google Translate)


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Former DTM champion Mike Rockenfeller agreed with DTM manager Elsner’s comments that the series has to create its own stars despite outside interest. He also mentioned that DTM was a backward step for Alex Albon.

“The series is interesting for many drivers who come from other fields. But it has to be that people come. The DTM doesn’t need anything else,” said Rockenfeller.


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Thai driver Alex Albon celebrated the first DTM win of his career in Sunday’s race eight at the iconic Nürburgring circuit to move up to fourth overall in the title race. // DTM at Nuerburgring, Germany on August 22, 2021 // Julian Kroehl / Red Bull Content Pool

He went to state Alex Albon’s F1 return with Williams next season is not solely down to his performance in DTM.

“But it shows that your career is never a straight line, but that you have ups and downs. For him, the DTM was certainly a step backward, but the return to Formula 1 shows the appreciation of the level of performance in the DTM,” said Mike.


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DTM is certainly a good option for drivers like Kimi Raikkonen and Seb Vettel. They are very experienced and have a vast knowledge as well as a love for racing.

Is DTM a good fit for Kimi and Seb? Let us know.



Devang Chauhan

341 articles

Devang Chauhan is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. Having completed his graduation in Journalism and Mass Communication, he has a keen eye for writing engaging and detailed articles on F1. Previously a writer for Sports Social's 'Chase Your Sport' Magazine, Devang has been an ardent follower of the sport for over a decade and has attended two editions of the Indian Grand Prix.