News ahead of WTCR Race of Bahrain

News ahead of WTCR Race of Bahrain

04.11.2022: WTCR RACE OF BAHRAIN Bahrain International Circuit Rounds: 15 and 16 of 20 Date: November 10-12, 2022 TWO FIA WORLD-LEVEL SERIES UNDER ONE UMBRELLA IN BAHRAIN

WTCR RACE OF BAHRAIN
Bahrain International Circuit
Rounds: 15 and 16 of 20
Date: November 10-12, 2022






TWO FIA WORLD-LEVEL SERIES UNDER ONE UMBRELLA IN BAHRAIN



In another first, the addition of the WTCR − FIA World Touring Car Cup on the timetable for the BAPCO 8 Hours of Bahrain, the deciding round of the FIA World Endurance Championship season, means there will be two FIA world-level competitions for fans to savour.


Indeed, the inaugural WTCR Race of Bahrain is being organised in partnership with WEC promoter Le Mans Endurance Management. Race 1 is set to take place from 19h05 local time on Friday November 11 followed by Race 2 from 10h00 on Saturday November 12. The BAPCO 8 Hours of Bahrain is due to begin at 14h00.



Alan Gow, FIA Touring Car Commission President, said: “It’s great to finally have a joint event with the FIA World Endurance Championship. Despite obvious differences in cars and race durations, touring cars and sportscars belong to the same family of closed-cockpit racing. There have always been crossovers between the two and drivers tend to switch from one discipline to another. This will also be something special for the fans, the media and should offer both promoters the opportunity to do some interesting promotional activities.”








WTCR TO HELP SHINE A SPOTLIGHT ON VOLUNTEERS AND OFFICIALS


The WTCR − FIA World Touring Car Cup will join the FIA World Endurance Championship in shining a spotlight on the volunteer marshals and officials who give up their time, often without financial reward, to ensure motorsport happens. November 12/13 has been designated FIA Volunteers and Officials Weekend and WTCR drivers will show their support to the men and women whose vital contribution should never be underestimated.


Throughout the weekend messages of thanks from drivers, team principals and senior officials will be broadcast on the Instagram account of the FIA Volunteers and Officials Commission (VOC), which can be followed HERE.





WTCR 100 CLUB MEMBERS PREPARE FOR ON-TRACK BATTLES



Three members of the WTCR − FIA World Touring Car Cup’s exclusive WTCR 100 Club will be in action at WTCR Race of Bahrain. They are Tom Coronel and Esteban Guerrieri, who have made 103 starts, and Norbert Michelisz, who has started 102 WTCR races. Thed Björk, Yann Ehrlacher and Yvan Muller joined the 100 club at WTCR Race of Portugal but won’t be competing in Bahrain.




WITH LOTS OF WTCR ACTION EXPECTED, BERTHON SAYS IT’S TIME TO BRING ON BAHRAIN



Nathanaël Berthon is predicting “lots of action” when Bahrain International Circuit hosts the first WTCR − FIA World Touring Car Cup races to take place in the Middle East this month. Berthon, who drives for Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport in the WTCR, raced at the track in GP2 and in the FIA World Endurance Championship. While he doesn’t expect that experience to provide him with the ultimate advantage, he’s in no doubt that fans watching live on television, online or at the venue itself will witness plenty of entertainment from the WTCR drivers.




BEEN HERE BEFORE: WTCR’S TASSI HAS BAHRAIN TCR KNOWLEDGE


LIQUI MOLY Team Engstler’s Attila Tassi, a Honda-powered race winner in the WTCR − FIA World Touring Car Cup, will start WTCR Race of Bahrain in the knowledge that he’s done something none of his WTCR rivals have. Before showing his pace and potential in WTCR, the Hungarian raced in the TCR International Series, which visited the Bahrain International Circuit in 2016 and 2017, thereby handing the Hungarian experience of the track in a TCR car.



After non-starting both races in the first year due to accident damage, Tassi finished P12 and P8 in the two races that formed rounds three and four of the 2017 TCR International Series.




WE CAN STILL FIGHT FOR WTCR TITLE, SAYS GIROLAMI


Néstor Girolami isn’t giving up on winning the WTCR − FIA World Touring Car Cup in his ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport Honda Civic Type R TCR. Argentine ace Girolami is 35 points behind Goodyear #FollowTheLeader Mikel Azcona with four races left and a total of 130 points still on offer across the events in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia next month.


Having won twice this year and scored three pole positions, including at the last two events, Girolami is on course to achieve his best WTCR finishing position so far in second place. But winning the coveted title would top a strong season and make Girolami the first non-European to be crowned King of WTCR.




EARLY CELEBRATIONS: HUFF CAN’T BE CAUGHT IN WTCR TROPHY


Rob Huff and his Zengő Motorsport team will celebrate winning the WTCR Trophy when the 2022 season resumes at WTCR Race of Bahrain. Huff cannot be caught in the race to win the title for independent drivers competing without direct financial support from a manufacturer customer racing department after a nine-event scheduled was confirmed rather than the planned 10.



Following his win double at WTCR Race of Alsace GrandEst in August, Huff’s provisional WTCR Trophy total stands at 124 points, 50 more than closest rival Mehdi Bennani. With a maximum of 23 points up for grabs at WTCR Race of Bahrain and again at WTCR Race of Saudi Arabia, Dubai-based Huff is out of reach in the WTCR Trophy title chase.



HOW WTCR STAR CORONEL’S FIA MOTORSPORT GAMES SUCCESS TRIGGERED A DUTCH GOLD RUSH


Tom Coronel’s capture of Touring Car Cup glory in the FIA Motorsport Games last Sunday marked the start of a Dutch gold rush. Driving a Comtoyou Racing-run Audi RS 3 LMS, Coronel finished first in the medal-deciding 15-lap contest at Circuit Paul Ricard before his compatriot Max Verstappen won the Mexican Grand Prix for his 14th victory in this season’s FIA Formula One World Championship.



After Team Belgium’s WTCR ace Gilles Magnus beat Coronel to victory in the Touring Car Cup qualification race in another Comtoyou Audi, the focus switched to the main event − and the gold medal contest − on Sunday afternoon with Magnus on pole position and Coronel second.


THE CATSBURG’S BACK! HYUNDAI-POWERED DUTCH ACE IN WTCR RETURN WITH BRC


WTCR − FIA World Touring Car Cup race winner Nicky Catsburg is heading (Middle) East this month for the season-deciding events in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, for what will be the Dutchman’s eagerly anticipated WTCR comeback. Catsburg, 34, took part in WTCR season two and three, contesting the 2019 title chase with BRC Racing Team before joining Team Engstler for 2020, once again relying on Hyundai i30 N TCR power.


Although he was unable to register a race victory in 2019, he won the third of three races at Slovakia Ring in 2020 for his breakthrough triumph in the series. After focusing on his impressive GT racing career in 2021, Catsburg has showcased his considerable skills in the FIA ETCR eTouring Car World Cup with Hyundai Motorsport N this season and joins a BRC team on the up with two WTCR events remaining.


Richard Rodgers, photos WTCR

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04.11.2022 / MaP

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