WTCR Race of Slovakia 2019

WTCR Race of Slovakia 2019 - 10-12/05/2019

THE CHALLENGE
Opened in 2010 40 kilometres east of the capital Bratislava, Slovakia Ring hosted the FIA World Touring Car Championship five times from 2012. Its challenging nature, speed variations, elevations and array of corner configurations makes it popular among drivers and fans with 32,000 turning out for race day in 2018. And there’s a double treat in store in 2019 with the FIM Endurance World Championship for motorbikes meaning action on two wheels as well as four. Described by inaugural WTCR OSCARO champion Gabriele Tarquini as “one of the best tracks in Europe”, the 200kph Turn 2 offers a big test.

RACE RECAP 2018

Weekend in short
*Slovak Prime Minister Peter Pellegrini hands Race 3 winner’s trophy to Michelisz
*Oriola and Tarquini also triumph as Tarquini takes title lead by three points
*Vervisch beats Björk to Race 3 podium in photo-finish
*WTCR season so far: 11 winning drivers, six customer racing brands victorious

Weekend report: Norbert Michelisz topped off an action-packed weekend with his first win of 2018 following a thrilling Race 3 as Pepe Oriola and Gabriele Tarquini also claimed a win apiece. Oriola and Michelisz, who partners Tarquini in the Hyundai-powered BRC Racing Team, became winners number 10 and 11 of the season respectively, while Oriola’s success for Cupra in Race 1 means six customer racing brands have won races. Tarquini headed into the summer at the top of the standings, albeit a slender three points ahead of Yvan Muller with Michelisz firmly in contention in third, closely followed by Yann Ehrlacher and Jean-Karl Vernay, who beat Tarquini to second in Race 1 behind Oriola. Tarquini was also the winner of the TAG Heuer Best Lap Trophy and TAG Heuer Most Valuable Driver. In a weekend of firsts, Norbert Nagy scored his and Zengő Motorsport’s maiden podium with second in Race 2, sandwiched by Tarquini and Muller. Fabrizio Giovanardi claimed Team Mulsanne’s first points with fifth in Race 1. New team-mate Kevin Ceccon was sixth in Race 3 on his debut. Denis Dupont took his first points with eighth in Race 2. Frédéric Vervisch beat Thed Björk to third in a Race 3 photo-finish.

Winning quote: “I’ve been waiting for this for some races now,” said Michelisz. “The weekend didn’t start the way we wanted. The feeling with the car was quite good, but not having the proper starting position for the first race made me really disappointed. But we managed to turn it around with the second qualifying and the third race today. I’m really happy and there’s a big relief from my side. Having won the first race, there is some pressure now off my shoulders and I really hope this is the start of a turnaround for me in terms of the championship fight. There have been a lot of ups and downs throughout the season, but going into the summer break with a boost I have from the atmosphere from this race makes me happy.”

Results reminder
DHL Pole Position Race 1: Gabriele Tarquini (ITA) Hyundai i30 N TCR
Race 1 winner:
Pepe Oriola (ESP) Cupra TCR
Race 1 fastest lap: Pepe Oriola (ESP) Cupra TCR
DHL Pole Position Race 2: Norbert Nagy (Cupra TCR)
Race 2 winner: Gabriele Tarquini (ITA) Hyundai i30 N TCR
Race 2 fastest lap: Gabriele Tarquini (ITA) Hyundai i30 N TCR
DHL Pole Position Race 3: Norbert Michelisz (HUN) Hyundai i30 N TCR
Race 3 winner: Norbert Michelisz (HUN) Hyundai i30 N TCR
Race 3 fastest lap: Norbert Michelisz (HUN) Hyundai i30 N TCR
TAG Heuer Best Lap Trophy: Gabriele Tarquini (ITA) Hyundai i30 N TCR
TAG Heuer Most Valuable Driver: Gabriele Tarquini (ITA) Hyundai i30 N TCR

Track essentials
Name: Slovakia Ring
Location: 800 Orechová Potôň 930 02, Slovakia
Website: www.slovakiaring.sk
Length: 5.922 kilometres
Race 1 distance: 9 laps
Race 2 distance: 9 laps
Race 3 distance: 11 laps
Best laps
WTCR lap record (qualifying): Gabriele Tarquini (Hyundai i30 N TCR), 2m09.312s, 14/07/18
TCR car lap record (qualifying): Gabriele Tarquini (Hyundai i30 N TCR), 2m09.312s, 14/07/18
WTCR lap record (race): Gabriele Tarquini (Hyundai i30 N TCR), 2m11.061s, 14/07/18
TCR car lap record (race): Gabriele Tarquini (Hyundai i30 N TCR), 2m11.061s, 14/07/18
More details
Time zone: GMT +2 hours
Fly to: Bratislava Airport (41 kilometres), Vienna International Airport (103 kilometres)
Stay: Bratislava (36 kilometres)
Hodos - 14 Aug
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