Monteiro “positive” for Vila Real WTCR step
Tiago Monteiro is “positive” he can make more on-track progress at WTCR Race of Portugal tomorrow.
The home hero was P12 when a collision with Gabriele Tarquini eliminated him from Race 1, his first start in Vila Real since 2017 after injury kept him out of action last season.
“Everybody gets confident and improves a little bit, but I honestly think we have a bigger step to do, so hopefully we can improve,” said the Honda-powered KCMG driver. “I’m quite motivated and confident with the car now compared to others, so I’m very positive about tomorrow. But we’ll see.
Of his Race 1 exit, Monteiro said: “The final result isn’t what I was looking for, but this is racing. What I’m happy about is to be back and to be here fighting the boys, who I congratulate and were amazingly fast.
“It’s always a challenge to drive here, to put a lap together without mistakes and pushing really hard is a big challenge. So I was happy overall, even though we ended up [P14 on the grid]. We knew it could have been a bit better, but we’ve been struggling a lot since Marrakech, so we’re gradually coming back and I’m happy with the work we have done with KCMG to find solutions.
“Step by step we’re coming back and at such a hard track I was happy to be in a group really and do something good. The race was going very well, the pace in the race was even better and we keep discovering stuff which is great. We were looking at the next lap to take the ‘joker’ and gain even more positions, and then Gabriele exiting the ‘joker’ lap overshot his braking, he went straight and I had nowhere to go. This is racing, it’s a street track and a lot of things can happen.
“But I’m so grateful to be here, with all this amazing public support. And not having driven last year gives you a lot of extra motivation to come back. I’m enjoying every moment I can.”