History will be made in DTM, when the season starts at Hockenheim in May 2019.
Sheldon van der Linde has signed a deal with BMW Motorsport, and will be the first South African driver in the series, in its 35-year long history.
The only 19 year-old racing driver has taken the jump from an Audi seat in the ADAC GT Masters amongst other things, where he most recently has been driving with his brother Kelvin at Montaplast by Land-Motorsport. So it was a bit of a surprise, when his name appeared on the Young Driver test list in December – and there wasn’t an Audi batch on the front grill.
But we have seen the same with the Vanthoor brothers, Laurens and Dries, who drive for Porsche and Audi respectively.
Motorsport is in the van der Linde family blood, where their grand father Hennie drove touringcar races back in South Africa, while their father Shaun has been racing in both his home country and also in Europe. Uncle Etienne has been doing several national and international series as well.
Sheldon won the South African Volkswagen Polo Cup two years in a row, before he went to Europe. He took part in the Audi TT Cup and ADAC TCR Germany, before he went on to share the Audi R8 LMS GT3 car with his brother in the ADAC GT Masters in 2018.
So all 6 BMW DTM seats are taken now, with Timo Glock, Marco Wittmann, Joel Eriksson, Bruno Spengler and Philipp Eng being his teammates.
The 2019 DTM season starts on 3 to 5 May at Hockenheimring.