On making his Le Mans debut at the wheel of the Audi R18 e-tron quattro hybrid race car, Rast left a strong impression as well. And with top performances in the LMP2 category of the FIA World Endurance Championship (WEC), Rast made his mark too. He has even contested a race in Formula E.
Rast is regarded as a racing driver who is fast in any type of race car. His side job in the gaming industry may be of help as well. A Fanatec simulator on which the “Project Cars” simulation is run has been set up at his home. Rast serves as a “handling consultant” to the e-racing project and now benefits from his side job in the DTM as well. “The DTM car requires a driving style I haven’t experienced in any other car. Driving that way on the simulator every day means that I’m storing the experience in my mind, so I don’t have to start from scratch when I sit in the real RS 5 DTM.”
Rast is cautious about making any predictions for his first DTM season. “My goal is to become the best rookie even though, with Loïc (Duval) in the field, there are two of us. I’d like to learn to regularly score points and to always finish the race well, to simply learn my way around the DTM, to integrate myself and to extract the most. We’ll have to wait and see how far that’ll get me. The DTM is extremely changeable. Nobody can tell where he stands at the end of the year. There are simply 18 extremely good drivers competing in the DTM.”
The car number he picked is 33. The reason is somehow typical for Rast, who is regarded as a pragmatist who remains unflappable in any situation. “I think ‘33’ simply looks cool, plus it’s easy for me to remember a double number.”
He is happy about contesting his first season in Audi Sport Team Rosberg. “That’s a tremendous squad I immediately felt comfortable with on making my debut at Zandvoort. In Jamie (Green), I have one of the fastest drivers as my teammate from whom I can learn a few things.”
In René Rast’s personal life, there was a major change at the end of 2016 when his son, Liam, was born shortly before Christmas. That is why the 30-year-old who stays fit by running ordered an Audi SQ7. “With a child we need a little more room, so the SQ7 is ideal.” He seems to have adjusted to the role of a father similarly fast as to the Audi RS 5 DTM: “Having a child is mega. I extremely enjoy my time at home.”