Hyundai i30 N TCR customers enjoyed their most successful showing yet last weekend (14-15 July), with the car claiming a total of 10 podiums across three championships.
Double win for i30 N TCR to close FIA WTCR European season
i30 N TCR customers BRC Racing Team lead the FIA World Touring Car Cup points’ standings after the three most recent races at the Slovakia Ring (July 13-15). The outfit’s two drivers - Gabriele Tarquini and Norbert Michelisz - claimed a victory each from the weekend.
Tarquini scored his victory in Race 2, following up his pole position and third place in the opening contest, while Michelisz claimed his first win at the wheel of the i30 N TCR in dominant fashion in Race 3 – completing the Grand Slam of pole position, fastest lap and victory as he led every lap on the Sunday finale.
He was nearly joined on the Race 3 podium by MRacing driver Thed Björk, who fought through the field after a difficult qualifying session to cross the line in fourth place only a fraction of a second away from snatching third.
Not only does the BRC squad now lead the teams’ championship, but, courtesy of his Race 2 success, Tarquini also leads the drivers’ standings from MRacing owner/driver Yvan Muller. Muller himself finished in third place in Race 2 to put two i30 N TCR on the podium, however, he now trails Tarquini by the narrow margin of two points as teams and drivers now prepare for the summer break, and the four fly-away events that complete the inaugural FIA WTCR season.
i30 N TCR claims another 1-2 in the USA
In the TCR class of the Pirelli World Challenge the Hyundai America supported Bryan Herta Autosport team delivered a fifth win from seven attempts in the first race of the annual Rose Cup weekend at Portland International Raceway (13-15 July). After missing out on pole position teammates Mark Wilkins and Michael Lewis made the decisive moves while lapping slower cars to make their way into first and second respectively, scoring a fourth 1-2 of the season for the i30 N TCR.
In Race 2 Lewis was able to match the pace of the race leader, but could find no way past leader around the 3,1 kilometre circuit scoring consecutive second positions on the weekend to bring his personal tally of 2018 podiums to seven, after eight races of the season.
Hyundai fight at the front of TCR Italy
The i30 N TCR was also at the front of the pack in TCR Italy at Mugello (13-15 July). For the start of the opening race the front row of the grid was made up of two Hyundai – Pit Lane Competizione’s Nicola Baldan on pole position with Eric Scalvini, representing BRC Racing Team, alongside. After the start both were soon part of the fight for first, with both men taking the lead at different points during the battle.
Baldan’s was the last to mount a challenge for the win, with a final lap move that ended with a drag race to the line, and a winning margin of just 0.04 seconds. While he celebrated from the second step of the podium, Scalvini took the silverware for third. Federico Paolino, aboard the second of the BRC Racing Team entries took points for eighth position.
Baldan completed his result in Race 2, springing from seventh on the reverse grid to finish the opening lap in fourth, from where he was able to mount a challenge for the lead following a Safety Car period after a first lap incident. Scalvini had to take evasive action in the fracas, limiting him to only ninth placed finish while his teammate crossed the line in seventh.
Hyundai customers sweep TCR Europe’s Hungarian weekend
i30 N TCR drivers won both races at the fourth round of the TCR Europe championship at the Hungaroring (7-8 July), beating an incredibly competitive field in the process. In the opening event Target Competition’s Dušan Borković scored a third win of the season. The Serbian driver came out on top of a four-way battle for the lead, making up places after qualifying fourth in a difficult session on a wet track. He now lays only a single point behind the championship leader, with the second half of the season remaining.
In Race 2 at the Hungarian track Francisco Mora powered from Pole Position to take a first win at the wheel of an i30 N TCR. He was joined in his podium celebrations by his M1RA teammate Daniel Nagy, who finished second to complete a 1-2 for the squad at the home event. For Nagy, who also scored two podiums at the circuit as a WTCR Wildcard entry in a Hyundai earlier in the season, the second place completed a hugely successful weekend. He was the only man to stand on the podium at the end of both contests - after finishing third in Race 1 - and together the results cemented his third place in the championship, and mean that he will start the final six races of the season as part of the fight for the title.
After being one of those to struggle for a clean lap in qualifying Target driver Kris Richard was able to rely on the race pace of his i30 N TCR to score good points, recording a fifth in Race 1 and seventh in Race 2. In the second encounter he crossed the line one place behind his teammate Reece Barr who continues to show great pace in the car, despite his relative lack of experience in TCR machinery.
The seven Hyundai customer drivers at the event were completed by Igor Stefanovski and Cedric Piro, the latter making his debut in the car run by the Autodis by Piro Sport team.