21st June, 2021: Mercedes-AMG driver Arjun Maini had a baptism of fire during the first round of the DTM championship held at the Monza race track in Italy.
Omega Seiki Mobility (OSM) and J.K.Tyre Motorsport backed racing driver Arjun Maini had a difficult start to his DTM campaign as the rookie faced a stern challenge against the championship’s more experienced campaigners.
The Indian had to deal with the added burden of having to adjust his driving style to suit the requirements of a GT3 racecar with very limited testing, after spending the last few seasons in Endurance Racing competing in the LMP2 class. Further Maini only had two practice sessions of 45 minutes each to acclimatize to both the circuit and racecar.
Racing for the GetSpeed team, Maini made steady progress over the course of the weekend with the Indian feeling more comfortable in his Mercedes AMG GT3 car as the sessions progressed.
The highpoint of Maini’s weekend came in Race 2 when he was locked in a battle with Mercedes stablemate Vincent Abril (who finished second in Race 1) before a mechanical failure ended his weekend prematurely.
“Today [Sunday] we were fighting for points before we had to retire with an ABS issue,” Maini explained.
“We had a Good start and we were Three Cars Side by side between Turn 1 and 2 . I held on to my Position but a small contact at that point caused the final failure later on in the race.”
“We had good pace in the second race and there was definitely significant progress made over the course of the weekend.”
“Becoming the first Indian to race in the DTM for me personally was a very special moment. While the final result may not have been what we wanted, I am proud of the progress we made as a team and we will regroup and come back stronger for the next round.”
Considering Maini has essentially missed an entire year’s worth of racing in Europe due to the ongoing pandemic, and the fact that there is a learning curve for even the most experienced of drivers given the shift to GT3 specification, Maini’s weekend could be classified as a success.
The second round of the DTM Championship will take place at the Lausitzring in Germany on 23rd and 24th of July. The Mercedes-AMG driver has previously tested on this circuit meaning he should be in contention to score his first points in the series.