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Quarta, 20 Junho 2018 19:19 | Actualizado em Terça, 11 Agosto 2020 03:15

Yann Ehrlacher defends his lead in Vila Real

After a one-month break, the WTCR - FIA Touring Car World Cup resumes this weekend in Portugal on street circuit of Vila Real. The event marks the end of the first half of the season.
Münnich Motorsport's Yann Ehrlacher will try to defend his lead in the Drivers' standings at the wheel of his Honda Civic. The young Frenchman has a margin of nine points ahead of his uncle Yvan Muller who drives a Hyundai i30 N run by his own team, while Rob Huff lies third in the classification a further seven points adrift in a SLR Volkswagen Golf GTI. The fourth place is occupied by the 2017 TCR International Series champion Jean-Karl Vernay who has a gap of 25 points from the leader in his Leopard Lukoil WRT Audi RS3 LMS. This makes three French drivers and four different brands in the top four positions.
None of the first four drivers classified has won a race in Vila Real, with Vernay facing his maiden appearance on the Portuguese street circuit. Previous winners in the WTCC years amongst the current WTCR competitors were Tom Coronel (2016), Mehdi Bennani and Norbert Michelisz (2017).
Two local drivers will make a one-off appearance in the series: Edgar Florindo in a Veloso Motorsport Cupra and José Rodrigues in a Target Competition Honda Civic FK2.

Track time at Vila Real
Saturday, 23 June - 09:00, Qualifying 1 (30 minutes)
Saturday, 23 June - 16:00, Race 1 (11 laps)
Sunday, 24 June - 09:00, Qualifying 2 (Q1 + Q2 + Q3, 60 minutes)
Sunday, 24 June - 15:45, Race 2 (11 laps)
Sunday, 24 June - 17:10, Race 3 (13 laps)

All time local - GMT +1




TCR Italy @ Misano
Ferrara stretches his leading margin

With a victory and a second place at Misano, Luigi Ferrara has stretched his leading margin in the TCR Italy standings.
At the wheel of his V-Action Racing Alfa Romeo Giulietta, Ferrara took his third win of the season in Race 1, making good use of his pole position and leading from lights to flag.
Behind him, Salvatore Tavano’s Cupra and Lorenzo Nicoli’s MM Motorsport Honda Civic battled for second; with ten minutes left, Nicoli succeeded in overtaking Tavano, but then spun off and rejoined to finish ninth. This promoted Plamen Kralev's Audi RS3 LMS to third.
With two laps to go, the BRC Racing Hyundai i30 N of Eric Scalvini and the Target Competition Honda Civic of Jürgen Schmarl made contact while fighting for fourth, which allowed MM Motorsport’s Massimiliano Mugelli to finish fifth ahead of Schmarl.
Schmarl made up of the disappointment by claiming his maiden win in Race 2. The Austrian crossed the finishing line second, close behind the Cupra of Andrea Larini, but the latter received a 25-second time penalty for an infringement during the safety car period and dropped to 15th.
Larini took the lead at the start, but two different pile ups resulted in the race being red-flagged. At the restart behind the safety car, Larini did not observe the correct distance, which was the reason for his penalty. Behind him there were thrilling fights with several contacts. Kralev’s Audi and Marco Pellegrini’s Honda Civic collided and retired while fighting for third; Scalvini’s Hyundai was sent into a spin by Matteo Greco’s Cupra while fighting for fifth; Greco was then given a drive through.
In the final laps, Ferrara managed to overtake Schmarl, but the Austrian retook the position and was handed the victory, courtesy of Larini’s penalty.
Championship returnée Giuseppe Montalbano won twice the DSG Trophy in a BF Motorsport SEAT León.
With the pairing of Greco-Tavano not scoring in Race 2, Ferrara increased his leading margin in the standings to 23.5 points; Schmarl moved up to fourth, 37 points behind.
The series will resume at Mugello on July 14th and 15th.

Photos: ACI Sport-Photo 4


TCR Scandinavia @ Anderstorp
Morin and Brink take maiden victories

Philip Morin and Tobias Brink took their maiden victory in TCR Scandinavia as they shared honours in the second event of the season at Anderstorp.
In Race 1, Morin led a PWR Racing Cupra cars 1-2-3 finish, with Daniel Haglöf and Robert Dahlgren completing the podium. Johan Kristoffersson started well from the pole in his Volkswagen Golf GTI, but he was passed by Haglöf and Morin in the first lap. Dahlgren had dropped to sixth behind the Golf cars of Fredrik Ekblom and Andreas Wernersson, but was able to overtake them and climbed back to fourth.
Morin overtook Haglöf for the lead and then Dahlgren made it a 1-2-3 for PWR Racing after passing Kristoffersson.
Ekblom, Wernersson and Mattias Andersson’s Honda Civic were involved in the battle for fifth; when the race resumed with four laps to go after a safety car period, Ekblom tried to overtake Kristoffersson, but ran wide; Andersson moved up to fifth and then overtook Kristoffersson to finish fourth.
Brink won an eventful second race and scored Audi’s first success in TCR Scandinavia. Dahlgren claimed an important second position in his effort to retain the title and Ekblom completed the podium in third.
Andersson took a perfect start from the pole and led from the Brink Motorsport’s Audi RS3 LMS cars of Brink and Micke Ohlsson. Ekblom dropped from fourth to seventh during the first lap, as he was passed by Dahlgren, Haglöf and Wernersson, but he keept Kristoffersson behind. Morin went off, prompting the safety car into action; when the race resumed, Andersson retired because of a puncture; Brink inherited the lead and was closely followed by Ohlsson and Dahlgren. In the fight for fourth Haglöf was chased by Ekblom, Wernersson and Kristoffersson. On lap 8, Haglöf missed the braking point at the end of the long straight and went wide, then pitted to change the front tyres.
With two laps to go, Ohlsonn slowed down and dropped from second to sixth. Brink took the chequered flag with a margin of two seconds ahead of Dahlgren who resisted the final assaults from Ekblom; Kristoffersson and Wernersson were classified fourth and fifth.
Dahlgren has taken the lead in the standings with 73 points, 12 more than Haglöf; Kristoffersson and Wernersson moved on to third and fourth, 16 and 21 points behind the leader.
The series will resume at Falkenberg on July 7th and 8th.

Photos: Micke Fransson-Teambild


TCR Portugal
Mora and Abreu target wins at Vila Real

The TCR Portugal's second event takes place this weekend at Vila Real with Speedy Motorsport's Pedro Salvador the current leader in the standings.
With a second place and a victory in the races that opened the season at Braga, Salvador and his Cupra have built a seven-point margin ahead of Armando Parente - who won Braga's Race 1 in the Team Novadriver Volkswagen Golf GTI - and his co-driver José Cautela.
TCR Europe regulars Francisco Mora (Veloso Motorsport Cupra) and Francisco Abreu (Sports & You Peugeot 308) will be willing to make up from a partially disappointing weekend at Braga and both have the opportunity to shine having shared race victories last year on the tricky racetrack.
Abreu - who shares his Peugeot with Rafael Lobato - is currently third in the standings, 12 points behind the leader, while Mora is only sixth behind the Audi RS3 LMS cars of Francisco Carvalho (Veloso Motorsport) and Gustavo Moura (Speedy Motorsport).
The field is completed by Manuel Gião's Kia c'eed.
The event will also award points for the TCR Ibérico Trophy.

Photo: Nuno Organista


Lubner Motorsport to run a LADA Vesta TCR

Lubner Motorsport is the first team that will run a LADA Vesta TCR outside of the TCR Russia series. The German outfit has taken delivery of a car from LADA Sport in Togliatti and entered it in the third round of the German VLN series that takes place this weekend at the Nürburgring, alongside its two Opel Astra TCR cars.
“We have been dealing with LADA Sport for long time and as soon as they have homologated the Vesta TCR we went to Russia for a test. Soon after we decided to buy a Vesta TCR and run it in the next VLN round,” explained team principal Mirko Lubner who added: “If everything goes well we will take part in the remaining VLN rounds and we are also thinking to make a guest appearance in the ADAC TCR Germany event at the Sachsenring.”
At the Nürburgring, German drivers Jens Wulf and Lukas Thiele will share the Vesta with LADA Sport Germany chief Andrei Sidorenko.
“We are very motivated and will try our best to make this project successful. We do not receive any supports from LADA Sport and have to do everything by ourselves. It would be great to find support to run the Vesta in some other TCR series in Europe,” Lubner concluded.

Photo: Lubner Motorsport


The TCR events of the week

22 / 24 June - TCR Portugal, Rounds 3 & 4 @ Vila Real, Portugal
23 / 24 June - WTCR, Rounds 13, 14 & 15 @ Vila Real, Portugal
23 June - VLN, Round 3 @ Nürburgring, Germany


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