Tarquini: It’s normal Norbi should hate me following home WTCR defeat
Gabriele Tarquini would understand perfectly if his BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse team-mate Norbert Michelisz now hates him.
Tarquini beat Michelisz to WTCR Race of Hungary glory for the second time in as many seasons with the Race 3 victory at the Hungaroring on Sunday.
As in 2018, Michelisz had started from the DHL Pole Position but couldn’t prevent Tarquini – winner of the 2018 WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO – from getting ahead. And despite being cheered on by the partisan Hungaroring crown, Michelisz was unable to retaliate and settled for second instead.
“Unfortunately for Norbi I made a very good race,” said Tarquini. “I know that Norbi hates me! He wanted to kill me on the podium, but it’s normal, in front of his crowd he wanted to win very much and he made a very good qualifying. He deserved to be in front, but unfortunately for him probably the start cost him the position a little bit, the fighting in the first corner. He went out of the first corner quite slow, so I took the opportunity to overtake him.”
Michelisz responded: “My start was okay. Esteban did a really good one. He had the inside line and then exiting the second corner I had a small bog down and I think I was too close to him. This cost me a bit of momentum. I was squeezed braking for Turn 2 with Esteban and Gabriele on the outside. I knew it was going to be very tough to stay in front of Gabriele. I really wanted to win this race, but I guess you can have worse than finishing second on the podium at the Hungaroring, especially when you consider [we were not on the pace in Marrakech].”
“When you are running one and two you have targets for yourself, but the priority is always to bring the result home [for the team]. I wanted to stay close in case he made a small mistake, which would allow me to go up the inside. But he doesn’t do a lot of mistakes.”