Round 03 Germany

  • WTCR Victory for Honda Civic Type R TCR at Nurburgring

    Esteban Guerrieri scored a commanding victory for the Honda Civic Type R TCR at the WTCR - FIA World Touring Car Cup Race of Germany.


Report

WTCR Victory for Honda Civic Type R TCR at Nürburgring

Nürburgring Nordschleife, Germany May 12, 2018

Esteban Guerrieri scored a commanding victory for the Honda Civic Type R TCR at the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup Race of Germany on Saturday.

Esteban Guerrieri

Benjamin Lessennes,Tom Coronel

Starting third on the partially-reversed Race Two grid at the legendary Nürburgring circuit, the Argentinian driver snatched the lead within four corners of the start and was never seriously challenged.

His win was his first of 2018 and the second of the season for the ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport team, who were competing at their home event and who retained their third place in the Teams’ Championship.

Esteban finished fourth on the road in Race Three, but was dropped to ninth in the results as a result of a harshly-imposed time penalty given for marginal side-by-side contact while overtaking a rival.

His team-mate Yann Ehrlacher finished sixth in Race Two and was on course to turn his fifth place on the grid into a fourth-place finish when a technical issue put him out on the final lap. He is fifth in the Drivers’ points table while Esteban is eighth.

James Thompson started and finished 19th in Race Two, but made strong progress to come home 16th in the finale.

Boutsen Ginion Racing scored a magnificent fourth place in Race Three with Benjamin Lessennes on what was the debut race weekend at the Nürburgring for both driver and team.

Lessennes, who was the highest-placed Honda driver and set the race’s third-fastest lap, secured the best finish of his career, just over an hour after contact from a rival put his Honda out of Race Two on the first lap.

Team-mate Tom Coronel added a pair of tenth-place finishes to make it three points-scoring races out of three this weekend; the Dutchman skillfully avoiding a multi-car incident that took place right in front of him on the final lap.

After a leaking damper caused Kris Richard to qualify 27th, the KCMG driver made excellent progress in both races. He finished 17th and 19th.

The next event takes place in nine days’ time at Zandvoort, The Netherlands.

Comments

Esteban Guerrieri | ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport

“This has probably been the most enjoyable day of racing of my life; a great win in Race Two and a really fantastic race later on. The peak of the weekend was yesterday in qualifying when I managed eighth on my last lap with a leaking damper at the rear. That put me third on the reversed-grid and from there I was able to find a way to the front, build a gap where the Honda was at its fastest in the twisty sections, and hang on for my first win of the year. I’m hugely disappointed with what I believe was an unfair penalty in Race Three because as a team, we deserved the result, but the victory is what I will remember from this weekend.”

Yann Ehrlacher | ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport

“I was very pleased to qualify fifth, because that means I’ve been in the top-five in every second qualifying this year. That meant I was sixth for Race Two on the reversed grid, and it’s where I finished because with the slipstream it was impossible not to lose two places on the long straight on the last lap. I should have been fourth in the last race, but the fuel pressure dropped suddenly as I started the last lap and I had to stop.”

James Thompson | ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport

“That was definitely more fraught than I was expecting. Starting where we did, it was clear I was going to be racing in the pack, and it was very tight. I took too much wing off for Race Two to try to increase the straightline speed, but that made the car tough to handle in the fast corners, so we went back to a more conventional set-up in Race Three and things were much better. Unlike here, Zandvoort is a track I know well, so we’ll be stronger.”

Benjamin Lessennes | Boutsen Ginion Racing

“The Nurburgring is the most difficult circuit in the world, and I’ve just finished fourth, which is just incredible. The speed has been there all weekend – just like in Hungary – so I knew this kind of result was possible. In the first race I had contact from Rob Huff, which put me out on the first lap, but the team did a fantastic job to fix my car in the repair time. Without that I’d never have had the great result in Race Three. The next aim has to go one step better and finish on the podium.”

Tom Coronel | Boutsen Ginion Racing

“I’ve finished in the points in all three races this weekend, which is the first time that happened all year. We worked hard to maximize the car for the corners and it’s paid off, although we didn’t have the necessary straightline speed to challenge the other cars down the long straight at the end of the lap. Some of the driving out there was pretty tough and there was a lot of contact, especially from Gordon Shedden, but the car is handling well and this is all good for my home race at Zandvoort next week.”

Kris Richard | Boutsen Ginion Racing

“We’ve made good progress today and 17th and 19th in the races is clearly much better than where we qualified. My target was to be in the top 10 here, but I think the mixed weather conditions in free practice set us back and denied us the track time we needed to make sure we had the right settings on the car for the rest of the weekend. It’s been hard to overtake on the straights here, although the car felt strong in the corners. I hope we have another opportunity to show what we can do at this level later in the year.”

Dominik Greiner | Team Manager

“It’s a fantastic feeling to win our home WTCR race. Racetracks don’t come more challenging than the Nordschleife and the whole team has worked incredibly hard to maximize the performance of the car and help Esteban achieve this victory. Yann drove well and it’s a shame he’s lost a strong finish to an issue in Race Three, but we’ll investigate what occurred and make sure it never happens again. James had a difficult weekend, but he’ll bounce back at Zandvoort.”

Olivia Boutsen | Team Manager

“In Hungary we were very pleased to finish fifth with Benjamin in only our second race meeting in WTCR, and now we have done even better with fourth spot. This shows that the hard work we are doing with the car and the drivers is working very well and we’ll continue to improve ourselves as the season goes on. This is our first time racing here at the Nürburgring Nordschleife so we’re very pleased to get the results with both Benjamin and Tom.”

Matteo Chiarcossi | Team Manager

“Today was an improvement on qualifying and Kris has put together two very strong drives to finish 17th and 19th, which are both much higher than where he started. We had some issues; the main one being the lack of dry running in practice, which put us on the back foot, especially as Kris has never driven the new Honda here before. As a team we’ve worked together to move up the order today and we can continue to climb if we get an opportunity for further wildcard entries.”

Mads Fischer | TCR Project Leader, JAS Motorsport

“It’s fantastic to see the Honda Civic Type R TCR on the top step of the podium, so I must offer huge congratulations to ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport and to Esteban. We’ve had a suspension issue that was magnified here by the demands of the circuit, but this has been rectified overnight and you can see the result today with Benjamin Lessennes scoring a great result in Race Three and Tom Coronel also scoring points in every race.”

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Results

FIA World Touring Car Cup 2018
Round 03: Germany 

Qualifying 2

Rank Driver (Machine)
1 Thed Björk (Hyundai i30 N TCR)
2 Frédéric Vervisch (Audi RS3 LMS)
3 Norbert Michelisz (Hyundai i30 N TCR)
4 Yvan Muller (Hyundai i30 N TCR)
5 Yann Ehrlacher (Honda Civic TCR)
6 Benjamin Lessennes(Honda Civic TCR)
8 Esteban Guerrieri (Honda Civic TCR)
13 Tom Coronel (Honda Civic TCR)
20 James Thompson (Honda Civic TCR)
27 Kris Richard(Honda Civic TCR)

Race 2

Rank Driver (Machine)
1 Esteban Guerrieri (Honda Civic TCR)
2 Pepe Oriola (Cupra TCR)
3 Frederic Vervisch(Audi RS3 LMS)
4 Yvan Muller (Hyundai i30 N TCR)
5 Norbert Michelisz (Hyundai i30 N TCR)
6 Yann Ehrlacher (Honda Civic TCR)
9 Tom Coronel (Honda Civic TCR)
16 Kris Richard(Honda Civic TCR)
22 Benjamin Lessennes(Honda Civic TCR)
27 James Thompson (Honda Civic TCR)

Race 3

Rank Driver (Machine)
1 Thed Björk (Hyundai i30 N TCR)
2 Frederic Vervisch(Audi RS3 LMS)
3 Yvan Muller (Hyundai i30 N TCR)
4 Benjamin Lessennes(Honda Civic TCR)
5 Nathanael Berthon(Audi RS3 LMS)
6 Pepe Oriola (Cupra TCR)
8 Esteban Guerrieri (Honda Civic TCR)
10 Tom Coronel (Honda Civic TCR)
18 Kris Richard(Honda Civic TCR)
19 James Thompson (Honda Civic TCR)
21 Yann Ehrlacher (Honda Civic TCR)

Photos