Now it's finally official: Sophia Flörsch is switching from Formula 3 to DTM and, as always, has big plans. The young woman from Munich will be competing in the GT3 DTM in an ABT Audi R8 LMS with her teammates Mike Rockenfeller and Kelvin van der Linde - a duo with plenty of international motorsport experience. Flörsch follows Katherine Legge and Rahel Frey as the third woman in the ABT Audi team. After the first test in Hockenheim, we spoke to the 20-year-old about the upcoming season.
Sophia is starting the 2021 season with the ABT Audi
Sophia, can you give us a few facts about the ABT Audi?
In Hockenheim I drove a test Audi R8 LMS GT3. "My" car will only be ready in its final design until the second official test at the Lausitzring (May 4th - 6th). I can only reveal this much: the design is really cool and I'll be able to announce what the car will be called!
What are the biggest differences between Formula and DTM?
The biggest difference is basically the weight: a formula car weighs around 620 kg, whereas a DTM car weighing over 1200 kg weighs twice as much! A lot of aerodynamics are lost as a result, you have to brake a lot earlier and you come through the corners much more slowly. Overall, everything takes a little longer before something happens ... when the rear comes, you have a little more time compared to the formula car, where everything happens very quickly. When braking, the weight shifts much more strongly to the front axle and the weight transfer is much slower in the bends. In addition, certain driving aids (ABS, traction control, etc.) are built in, as it is also a vehicle for amateur drivers and gentlemen drivers, among other things.
What do you hope for in the 2021 season?
I think this year will be a very exciting one for me. With the DTM and the FIA WEC, I'm competing in two extremely strong championships at national and international level. So it will be very intensive for me to learn because I will collect a lot of kilometers on very good racetracks in both championships and I am looking forward to the season. They are very different worlds - on the one hand long-distance in a car that has a lot of aerodynamics and is very fast and on the other hand the DTM, which is extremely professional and has a strong field of drivers with big names. It's going to be a year I've never had before, so I'm really looking forward to it and of course I want to keep improving and getting closer to my teammates ... and also beat them!
You are already a role model for your younger fans. Why are there so few women who drive in the top motorsport series?
I think the problem arises at a very young age. It is normal for a boy to get a blue room and a toy car and a girl to get a pink room and a doll. Society sees it as normal for boys to like cars and drive races, and that's why there aren't that many girls in motorsport. And that has to change. There is only a small percentage of girls in karting and of course that becomes less and less as you go up. As soon as there is a successful woman in top motorsport who proves that you can be a woman with long hair, make-up and nail polish and win Formula 1 at the same time, it will also be more and more accepted by society. A lot has happened in motorsport in recent years, but there is still a lot to be done so that the proportion will be significantly larger!