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All you need to know about WTCR Race of Portugal

All you need to know about WTCR Race of Portugal

28.06.2019: FIA WTCR Race of Portugal WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO 2019 Rounds 16, 17and 18 of 30, Vila Real, 5-7 July THE CHALLENGE A street circuit oozing history and intrigue, racing has been held on Vila Real’s demanding hi


FIA WTCR Race of Portugal
WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO 2019
Rounds 16, 17and 18 of 30, Vila Real, 5-7 July




THE CHALLENGE



A street circuit oozing history and intrigue, racing has been held on Vila Real’s demanding hillside roads since 1931, when Gaspar Sameiro and Ercilio Barbosa conquered the original 7.150-kilometre course in a Ford Model A. Safety and financial factors meant races were held on an irregular basis until the WTCC’s arrival in 2015 provided stability and Vila Real’s first world championship-level event.



The 4.785-kilometre layout now used is a challenging blend of fast turns, climbs and descents. While a handful of chicanes were installed for safety reasons, the spectacle remains unaltered with speeds exceeding 200kph on the final downhill section.





THE ESSENTIALS



Rounds: 16-18
Venue: Circuito Internacional de Vila Real
Date: 5-7 July
Location: Av. Carvalho Araújo 7, 5000-651 Vila Real
Length: 4.785 kilometres
Time zone: GMT +1 hour



Race 1 distance: 11 laps (52.635 kilometres)
Race 2 distance: 11 laps (52.635 kilometres)
Race 3 distance: 13 laps (62.205 kilometres)



WTCR qualifying lap record:
Thed Björk (Hyundai i30 N TCR), 1m59.824s (143.90kph), 24/06/18
WTCR race lap record:
Thed Björk (Hyundai i30 N TCR), 2m02.964s (140.2kph), 24/06/18







FIVE FACTS ON VILA REAL




1: Vila Real played host to F3 single-seaters in the 1960s before sportscar racing came to the fore. Chris Craft and David Piper won a six-hour event in 1969 driving a Porsche 908.



2: During the 1980s touring car racing thrived at the circuit before a fatal accident in 1991 forced the authorities to intervene due safety concerns. Racing resumed on a shortened layout in 2007, with a revival meeting attended by Sir Stirling Moss, who competed at Vila Real in period.


3: The name Vila Real (Royal Town) comes from King Denis of Portugal founding it in 1289.
4: In order to raise money to cover the cost of running the race during its early years, a tax was placed on every kilogram of meat sold in Vila Real.


5: Originally a 7.150-kilometre layout complete with river crossing via a bridge, the first WTCC event in 2015 used a 4.755-kilometre version of the course. However, modifications to the first chicane to make it faster and up overtaking opportunities increased the track to its current length of 4.785 kilometres.




Provisional key timings:

Friday 5 July:


Free Practice 1: 17h00-17h45


Saturday 6 July:


Free Practice 2: 09h00-09h30
First Qualifying: 11h00-11h40
First Qualifying DHL Media Zone (pitlane): 11h40 (estimated)
Race 1 (11 laps): 15h15-15h45
Race 1 podium: 15h50 (estimated)
Race 1 press conference (Media Centre): 16h05 (estimated)


Sunday 7 July:


Second Qualifying Q1: 10h00-10h30
Second Qualifying Q2: 10h35-10h50
Second Qualifying Q3: 11h00 (first car starts top-five shootout)
Second Qualifying DHL Media Zone (pitlane): 11h15 (estimated)
Race 2 (11 laps): 15h30-16h00
Race 2 podium: 16h10 (estimated)
Race 3 (13 laps): 17h00-17h35
Race 3 podium: 17h45 (estimated)
Race 2/3 press conference (Media Centre): 18h00 (estimated)






Race recap 2018


Weekend in short

*Björk hits back from huge crash to triumph in street racing spectacular
*Teamwork to the fore after multi-car accident affects Race 1
*Homola scores maiden win after holding off Race 1 victor Muller in ‘joker’ lap decider
*Oriola is TAG Heuer Most Valuable Driver with 50 points




Weekend report: Thed Björk proved he was the Real deal with the ultimate comeback performance in WTCR OSCARO, winning Race 3 on the streets of Vila Real as Mato Homola became the ninth different winner in 15 all-action rounds by triumphing in Race 2.


 Björk was involved in the multi-car accident in Race 1, his Hyundai i30 N TCR momentarily catching fire and requiring his YMR team to work through the night to repair it for Second Qualifying. Showing no ill effects from the crash, Björk landed the DHL Pole Position for Race 3 and took win number two of 2018.



Homola’s moment in the spotlight came in Race 2. Starting third on the grid aboard a DG Sport Compétition PEUGEOT 308TCR, the Slovak belied his lack of Vila Real track knowledge to defeat Race 1 winner Yvan Muller, who waited until the penultimate lap to take his ‘joker’ lap but was unable to stop Homola from sweeping ahead as he re-joined.



 Muller’s Race 1 victory and second in Race 2 put him back on top of the WTCR standings at the halfway point of the season ahead of Gabriele Tarquini. Pepe Oriola impressed with podiums in Race 1 and Race 2.




Winning quote:
“The team did a fantastic job,” said Björk. “They repaired the whole car all through the night and worked all night. The first lap I did this morning in Q1 they were cheering, it was so fantastic. I had a great feeling all day and forget about the big accident.



It was such a nice car, unbelievable. I had the speed. But you see Norbert, he damaged his hand. It was a tough weekend in many ways. I can only be happy to win, but I am also happy to be here in Vila Real because the people here are fantastic. The ‘joker’ lap adds spice for this track because it is so difficult to overtake. So I think it is good with the joker.”





Results reminder


DHL Pole Position Race 1: Rob Huff (GBR) Volkswagen Golf GTI TCR
Race 1 winner: Yvan Muller (FRA) Hyundai i30 N TCR
Race 1 fastest lap: Gabriele Tarquini (ITA) Hyundai i30 N TCR
DHL Pole Position Race 2: Gordon Shedden (GBR) Audi RS 3 LMS
Race 2 winner: Mato Homola (SVK) PEUGEOT 308TCR
Race 2 fastest lap: Thed Björk (SWE) Hyundai i30 N TCR
DHL Pole Position Race 3: Thed Björk (SWE) Hyundai i30 N TCR
Race 3 winner: Thed Björk (SWE) Hyundai i30 N TCR
Race 3 fastest lap: Thed Björk (SWE) Hyundai i30 N TCR
TAG Heuer Best Lap Trophy: Thed Björk (SWE) Hyundai i30 N TCR
TAG Heuer Most Valuable Driver: Pepe Oriola (ESP) Cupra TCR



What’s new for 2019?



Standardised points… for top 15



WTCR / OSCARO gets a new points system for 2019 with the aim of ensuring more drivers can score points more often. The top 15 drivers according to the final classification of Races 1, 2 and 3 are rewarded as follows:

POS: 1-2-3-4-5-6-7-8-9-10-11-12-13-14-15
PTS: 25-20-16-13-11-10-9-8-7-6-5-4-3-2-1

The same points-scoring system is applied to the WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup presented by OSCARO for Teams. Wildcard drivers are no longer eligible for points.

First Qualifying pace rewarded with points
Points are distributed not only following Second Qualifying as in 2018 but following First Qualifying as well. The fastest five drivers according to the final classification score as follows:

POS: 1-2-3-4-5
PTS: 5-4-3-2-1






Richard Rodgers, photos WTCR


 

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/need-to-know-wtcr-race-of-portugal---193184.html

28.06.2019 / MaP

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