WEBWIRE – Friday, May 13, 2022
The 36-year-old surfer Sebastian Steudtner gets two-time Le Mans overall winner Timo Bernhard wet at the DTM in Portugal.
With spring-like temperatures of 22 degrees celsius and bright sunshine at the season opener in Portimao, Portugal, the DTMs drivers and teams are drawn to the beach. A day of free swimming and relaxation is available between the final test drives, the first training session and the start of the season opener in Portimao, Portugal. As a number of drivers splash about in the shallow water of the Algarve coast, seven drivers set off for Praia de Cordoama beach, some 50 kilometres southwest of the race venue. Timo Bernhard, Porsche Brand Ambassador, is one of them. Two-time Le Mans winner, endurance world champion, has Sebastian Steudtner, the reigning champion of big waves and Porsche partner. The 36-year-old sends Bernhard into the surf.
I don’t know if my surfing excursions can be called surfing, jokes the racing driver after he tries to do a bit too much on the beginner board. However, I was taught by the best teacher in the entire world. I ended up surfing a wave two to three times on the board. Those few seconds alone gave me a tremendously liberating feeling. According to Steudtner, the water masses in the immediate vicinity of the beach were perhaps 50 cm high not quite what the surfing pro is used to. Steudtners natural habitat are the waves in the wildest surf on earth, which can reach a towering 30 metres.
There was a rock face at the beach that was about 30 metres tall. Sebastian stated that sometimes the waves that he rides are that high. Thats absolutely inconceivable for me; I dont even want to think about it, says Bernhard, owner of the new DTM Team 75 Bernhard, shaking his head in disbelief. Steudtner says that he enjoyed diving into my world, in the best sense of the term, and slapping his legs in amusement at his students’ involuntary underwater interludes. He who laughs last …
A day later, while the sun was still shining down, the suits of neoprene had long dried. It’s time for the second leg. Bernhard introduces Porsche partner Steudtner into his high-speed racing world. On completion of the DTM practice session, a Carmine Red Porsche 911 Carrera GTS rolls into the pit lane of the Autodromo Internacional do Algarve near Portimao at 18: 00.
While Bernhard beams with anticipation, Steudtner is visibly nervous, but also excited, as he surveys the 353 kW (480 PS; 911 Carrera GTS: fuel consumption combined (WLTP) 11.4 10.4 l/100 km, CO2 emissions combined (WLTP) 258 236 g/km, fuel consumption combined (NEDC) 10.3 9.7 l/100 km, CO2 emissions combined (NEDC) 234 221 g/km) beast. Both men donned their helmets. Bernhard jumps into the drivi