Monteiro explains WTCR Race of Japan podium double miss
Tiago Monteiro has explained the mistake that cost him a podium double when the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO visited Japan last week.
After finishing third in Race 1 at WTCR JVCKENWOOD Race of Japan, Monteiro was on course to finish third again in Race 3 only to falter in the closing stages at Suzuka.
Believing the race had run its course behind the safety car, Monteiro headed into the pits only to realise his error. But in the time it took him to regain the track, Kevin Ceccon and Thed Björk had moved ahead of him in the train of cars.
To compound his frustration, Monteiro was handed a 10-second time penalty for cutting across a grass section and re-passing Björk as he re-joined the circuit.
“We had a miscommunication at the end of Race 3 over the radio, I lost focus and headed for the pitlane, and in the time it took to realise my mistake, I lost third place,” said the Honda-powered KCMG driver. “It’s a real shame, but we showed this weekend that we’re right back on the pace and I hope we can keep this up for the rest of the season.
“I was the best-placed Honda driver in Race 2 after a great start and the fastest Honda driver in Race 3 as well after a front-row qualifying performance, but I want to help Honda win the championship so I didn’t make it hard for Esteban [Guerrier] when he came to pass me. We’ve scored good points and showed well for Honda at their home circuit.”