David Coulthard has given the strongest possible hint yet that he is close to signing a deal to race with Mercedes in the German Touring Car series (the DTM) for the 2010 season.

Having participated in a couple of test sessions with the manufacturer, there were concerns that the thirteen-time Grand Prix winner’s move to the DTM could be scuttled by a disagreement between Mercedes and Red Bull.

Coulthard DTM

It is believed that Red Bull – for whom DC works in an advisory capacity in addition to his broadcasting role with the BBC – were concerned regarding a sponsorship clash between their brand and that of its rival ‘Monster’, which is an active sponsor of Mercedes, both in the DTM and in Formula 1.

For DC, however, he believes that this is not a concern.

"The only thing left to do is to sit down with [Mercedes boss] Norbert Haug to complete the final details," DC said. "Maybe I will get a chance this weekend in Australia to try to talk to him. Failing that, it will be before the [championship] season-opener in Hockenheim [scheduled in April].”

There is no confirmation as to whether Coulthard will be able to continue his role with Red Bull of the BBC, but it is imagined that he would be allowed to do so when the DTM rounds did not clash with the Formula 1 Grand Prix weekends.

If he joins the DTM in 2010, Coulthard will be the fourth F1-associated driver in the championship series, joining Ralf Schumacher – who was recently re-signed to Mercedes in spite of some very ordinary form in 2009 – McLaren test driver Gary Paffet and Force India test driver Paul di Resta.

[Image via AUTOSPORT]

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Richard Bailey

Founder & Chief Editor at MotorsportM8
Hasn't missed a Grand Prix since 1989. Has a soft spot for Minardi. Tattooed with 35+ Grand Prix circuits.