TSS BIRA Qualifying: TCR Thailand

TSS BIRA Qualifying: TCR Thailand

10.09.2016: Thailand Super Series TSS - Bira Circuit Saturday, September 10th 2016

Thailand Super Series TSS - Bira Circuit
Saturday, September 10th  2016





The pace is hotting up in TCR Thailand and after the last round saw the competitors hook up with TCR International Series on its high profile visit to Buriram it’s a whole different ballgame this week as the touring car series rocks into Bira Circuit for the first time.


There were also some new cars to look out for as the first two examples of the SEAT Léon TCR MY2016 have just arrived here and both have swiftly joined the grid in Pattaya.


One, still running in its ex-factory ‘body in white’ colours, is in the hands of Rattanin Leenutaphong who has stepped up a gear after previously having been seen in TSS racing a Kia Picanto in Super Eco. Paritat Bulbon, who has vacated the Léon Cup Racer that he’s driven so far this season, is utilising the other new example here this week.


The ‘MY2016’ version of the Léon offers a lot of detailed improvements all round, as the benchmark TCR racecar is refined much further. Notably it has a specific FIA fuel cell as well improvements to the suspension while visually it has a new aero kit with a restyled front spoiler and splitter, new sideskirts and a revised rear bumper.


The 30-minute qualifying session was held in intense early afternoon heat and saw a front row lockout for Vattana Motorsport as Jack Lemvard (SEAT) edged out his teammate Narasak Ittiritpong (Honda) by 0.165 of a second, the two ‘battleship grey’ cars topping the timesheets throughout the 30-minute session.


Jack planted the #44 on pole with a 1:03.663 best lap, his fourteenth lap out on track, while Narasak weighed in with a 1:03.828, a hair’s breadth behind, on his sixteenth lap on track. He had a big spin onto the grass on the inside of the exit of 100R but was able to resume without any damage to the Civic TCR.


Third place went to championship classification leader Carlo Van Dam, and with his closest rival Grant Supaphong absent this weekend that further eases his advantage at the top.


The Dutchman banged in a 1:03.888 that left him just a couple of thousands adrift of Narasak and meant the top two were covered by little more than two tenths – that bodes well for an exciting race when TCR Thailand takes to the grid for its first race of the weekend just after the lunch break today.


Fourth fastest time went to Chariya Nuya who has stepped into the Eakie BBR Kaiten Civic that Kantadhee Kusiri debuted with an impressive showing during the last round in Buriram. Fifth quickest was Rattanin who is steadily getting used to his new SEAT on his debut in the car; he posted a best time of 1:06.051 to open out Row 3.


Then comes the other SEAT TCR MY2016, the #7 of Paritat who turned in a 1:06.335. The final qualifier was Nattachak Hanjitkasem who had a problematic session after the intercooler pipe detached and a quick fix didn’t work in time, he reported afterwards that the TBN MK IHere Civic TCR wasn’t able to rev above 5,000 rpm and thus couldn’t post a representative laptime before the clock ticked away to zero.




- Edd Ellison - also photo

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/tss-bra-qualifying-tcr-thailand---154798.html

10.09.2016 / MaP

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