Ducati MotoGP rider Andrea Dovizioso has been clocking extensive practice miles at the Misano World Circuit Marco Simoncelli ahead of his DTM guest appearance at the Italian circuit in a weeks time.
The 13-time MotoGP race winner has been attempting to adapt to the demands of a Class One-spec DTM car, which is worlds apart from his Ducati Desmosedici.
Despite being more accustomed to two wheels, the Italian is hoping his experience of the 4.2km circuit will aid him in being quick on four.
“I grew up not far from the race track,” explained Divizioso, “Last year I won the MotoGP race at this circuit.
“So for me personally, there is something very special about this track.”
Last years MotoGP runner-up is noted for his smooth riding style on the Ducati Desmosedici, and admits he has to learn to push his Audi RS5 DTM which has significantly higher downforce than he is used to.
“The biggest challenge for me was to reach the limit in the fast corners,” described the Italian, “especially in the first six or seven laps.
“I simply lacked a feel for it. Actually, the DTM race cars generate so much downforce that theoretically you can do so much more.
“It’s very different to the MotoGP bike. I knew that the DTM drivers take certain corners flat-out. When I drove those corners myself, I thought it was impossible.”
The 33 year old has praised the support of the Audi Sport Team WRT crew, and highlighted the influence of coaching from two-time DTM champion Mattias Ekström.
“I think we worked very well together, but with a guy like Mattias I hadn’t expected it to be otherwise.
“The same applies to the entire Audi Sport crew. The support I received was simply overwhelming.”
However, Dovizioso is aware that the DTM is one of the most competitive racing series around the globe, and for that reason he is just hoping to have a positive experience.
“As far as the end result is concerned I have no expectations,” explained the Italian, “The level of competition in the DTM is notorious for being extremely high.
“I’ve watched a lot of races and they all seem very close. I’ll try to keep up with the field, but that’s about it in my view.
“I’m not going to set myself unrealistic goals; I’m just going to enjoy it.”