26-year-old Dutchman Robin Frijns will replace departing two-time champion Mattias Ekström in Audi’s DTM line-up this year, as the Swede leaves the German series to focus on his Rallycross campaign.
Frijns has been racing with Audi since the 2015 season, competing initially in the Blancpain GT Series, Blancpain Sprint Series and the Blancpain Endurance Series in an Audi R8 LMS.
In 2016 Frijns moved into the Intercontinental GT Challenge in an R8 as well. The Dutchman eventually took the Blancpain Sprint Series title in 2017, as well as fourth overall in the overall Blancpain GT series the same year.
“Robin left a strong impression with us even back then and we haven’t lost sight of him ever since,” said Head of Audi Motorsport Dieter Gass. “At the wheel of the Audi R8 LMS, he showed his abilities and is doing a very good job in our Formula E simulator as well.
“That it’s possible to battle for the title in the DTM even as a rookie was demonstrated by René Rast last year.
“Robin has great potential and Audi is in a very good position in terms of its driver lineup for the 2018 DTM. We’re convinced of this.”
Prior to racing with Audi and WRT in the Blancpain series’, Frijns had a successful single-seater career which saw him win the Formula BMW Europe title in 2010, Eurocup Formula Renault 2.0 title in 2011 and the Formula Renault 3.5 Series title in 2012.
He was also a test driver for the Sauber and Caterham Formula One teams in 2013 and 2014 respectively.
Frijns will make his DTM début at Hockenheim on the 5th May 2018.