After a victory in the opening round of the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup in Marrakesh three weeks ago, the second round in Hungary ended in disappointment. Jean-Karl Vernay completed with a twice Top 10 today, as his teammate Gordon Shedden managed a remarkable comeback fight in 15th and 12th.
Norbert Michelisz delivered a second Pole Position at WTCR Race of Hungary for his adoring home crowd in a thrilling qualifying shootout at the Hungaroring this morning. The local hero driver inspired an eruption of noise from the main grandstand. Audi Sport Leopard Lukoil teammates, Jean-Karl Vernay and Gordon Shedden, closed the Qualifying session in 14th & 19th respectively, both focused to Race 2 which took place at 15:30 local time.
Rob Huff drew on all of his vast experience to control the reverse-grid Race 2 all the way to score his first victory in the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup: the Briton converted his Pole Position into the lead at the start, diving right to hug the inside line into Turn 1 and hold off fellow front row starter the local wildcard entry Dániel Nagy, who was cheered all the way by a wildly enthusiastic partisan crowd. Yvan Muller, who started fifth in his YMR Hyundai, completed the podium.
Gabriele Tarquini broke the hearts of the enthusiastic masses in the main grandstand by beating national hero and team-mate Norbert Michelisz to victory in Race 3: the Italian veteran extended his points lead since the first braking at Turn 1. Meanwhile, Esteban Guerrieri was judged to have jumped the start with a drive-through penalty and drop down the order. On Lap 3 the safety car was called on track to remove the Aurélien Panis’ car, as racing resumed on Lap 5. But 1 lap later, the threat of rain had hung over the circuit and the race was red flagged before a new restart in dry conditions.
In both Race2 & Race3 Jean-Karl Vernay managed an impressive start, completing a twice Top 10 as he once again proved to be the best of the Audi RS 3 LMS entries. His Audi Sport Leopard Lukoil teammate Gordon Shedden managed a remarkable comeback fight in each of today’s races for the prestigious mark of the four rings, claimed 15th and 12th place after a long battle against his rivals.
#69 Jean-Karl VERNAY: “Well it was a difficult Sunday. I tried to do my best but we were really far, almost two seconds off the pace which is huge and inacceptable. First Audi again and I was able to make two really good races. I improved from P15 to the top ten and some points, it was the best we could do. We all hope the Audi will get better chance in the next race.”
#52 Gordon SHEDDEN: “We leave Hungary with a lot to think about and lots of areas to improve. For one reason or another this circuit didn't quite suit the Audi but we can look forward with lots of optimism to the Nurburgring in two weeks. A fantastic circuit, a real race circuit, and hopefully we can have good results there.”
1 - Michelisz / HUN / BRC Racing / Hyundai i30 N / 1’52.365
2 - Tarquini / ITA / BRC Racing / Hyundai i30 N / 1’52.807
3 - Guerrieri / ARG / All-Inkl.com / Hyundai i30 N / 1’53.023
14 - Vernay / FRA / Audi Sport Leopard Lukoil / RS 3 LMS / 1’53.981
19 - Shedden / GBR / Audi Sport Leopard Lukoil / RS 3 LMS / 1’54.610
1 - Huff / GBR / Sebastian Loeb Racing / VW Golg GTi / 12 Laps
2 - Nagy / HUN / M1RA / Hyundai i30 N / +0.562
3 - Muller / FRA / MRacing YMR / Hyundai i30 N / +2.200
10 - Vernay / FRA / Audi Sport Leopard Lukoil / RS 3 LMS / +19.896
15 - Shedden / GBR / Audi Sport Leopard Lukoil / RS 3 LMS / +25.916
1 - Tarquini / ITA / BRC Racing / Hyundai i30 N / 17 Laps
2 - Michelisz / HUN / BRC Racing / Hyundai i30 N / +0.354
3 - Muller / FRA / MRacing YMR / Hyundai i30 N / +3.691
10 - Vernay / FRA / Audi Sport Leopard Lukoil / RS 3 LMS / +17.645
12 - Shedden / GBR / Audi Sport Leopard Lukoil / RS 3 LMS / +22.769