Huff pays tribute to Tarquini and Muller after WTCR Vila Real crash
Rob Huff has offered his thanks to rivals Gabriele Tarquini and Yvan Muller after the pair came to his aid following the huge accident at WTCR Race of Portugal in Vila Real at the weekend.
Sébastien Loeb Racing driver Huff started Race 1 from the DHL Pole Position, but made contact with team-mate Mehdi Bennani on the opening lap. The pair crashed heavily and triggered a multi-car accident that caused a delay of more than two hours before the race could resume.
“I’d like to say a huge thanks to Gabriele Tarquini,” said Huff, who escaped serious injury in the incident. “I was very winded after the crash and couldn’t get out of my car, and with the engine oil spilling it was on fire. He quickly came over and helped me get out of the car and stayed with me in the few minutes before the medical teams arrived.
“Also thanks to Yvan Muller, who also came to help out; it just shows that even though we’re all rivals on the track, there’s a great comradery between us all.”
Both Volkswagen Golf GTI TCRs were severely damaged in the crash and took no further part at WTCR Race of Portugal. Huff acknowledged the team had lost the chance of a great result at the fast street circuit, and also refused to place any blame on Bennani for the collision.
“I feel sorry for the team, as this should have been a sensational weekend for us,” he said. “The Golf GTI TCR was absolutely amazing around this track. The car was quick, Mehdi was quick and there with us, but it’s just one of those things.
“We’ve just got to put this weekend behind us and look forward now to the next race in Slovakia. The cars were completely destroyed, so we have two new cars coming for the next round, but that means a lot more work for the guys to get them ready, so I’ll do my best to make sure to repay them for their hard work at the next race.”
The Briton added that he was touched by the response he has received from the public following the accident.
“I also want to say thanks to all the fans out there,” he said. “The number of messages of support have been overwhelming, and it’s been very humbling to know there are so many people who are looking out for me.”