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Gerhard Berger confirmed as new ITR chairman

After over 30 years under the direction of Hans-Werner Aufrecht, Gerhard Berger now assumes the position of chairman at DTM rights holders ITR e.v, with initial speculation about this change in power surfacing in German media last December.

The ex-Formula 1 driver and team boss will now closely work with the boards of both ITR and the Deutsche Tourenwagen Masters, in a move to ensure the DTM’s future.

Berger, who has had a vested interest in the DTM for many years, is looking forward to his new role, after having taken part in 201 Grand Prix and two spells in motorsport management.

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This included co-ownership of Scuderia Toro Rosso and directing Williams BMW’s efforts in F1 in the late 1990s and early 2000s, along with working with the FIA as the president of the single-seater commission.

“DTM is a top-class product with independent, powerful regulations, with strong manufacturers, top sponsors, important international partnerships and many fans. This is a good starting point with great potential for the future. The first task I will focus on in the coming weeks is gaining a deeper insight into the details with the support of my colleagues,” explained the Austrian, whose nephew Lucas Auer currently races in the DTM with Mercedes-AMG DTM.

“We will then use this strong basis for creating a joint strategy for the future. While doing so, I consider the further development of our international partnerships – also with regards to new manufacturers – spectacular racing cars that also command the drivers’ respect as well as a format combining both sport and entertainment as particularly important.”

“We are glad to have a man as experienced as Gerhard Berger at the helm”, said ITR co-chairman and ITR GmbH CEO Florian Zitzlsperger, who now assumes operational control as a result of Aufrecht’s departure.

“Due to both his outstanding experience in motor racing and as entrepreneur, he is the ideal successor of Hans Werner Aufrecht, who laid the strong basis for the planned enhancement of DTM. Without Hans Werner Aufrecht, DTM wouldn’t exist. For his passionate and successful work he deserves our maximum appreciation, our respect and our gratitude.”

“I’m proud of what my colleagues and I experienced and achieved in the past three decades. But now it’s time to hand over this unique race series,” said Aufrecht, who leaves the board along with Team Abt Sportslines’s Hans-Jürgen Abt and Walter Mertes.

Mertes will still continue to be involved with the sponsorship work he does, as well as taking up the post of Managing Director under Zitzlsperger.

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