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WTCC World Touring Car Championship 2014

Round 03: Hungary

  • Overview
  • Race Results
  • Qualifying
  • Photo
May 3, 2014

Honda Civics Set Top 5 Times for Hungaroring WTCC Thriller

The Honda Civics of Gabriele Tarquini and Tiago Monteiro battled their way into the top five places after the close fought official qualifying sessions for the FIA World Touring Car Championship here at the Hungaroring this afternoon. In Q1 local hero Norbert Michelisz posted the 3rd fastest time over the 4.38km course in the Zengo Motorsport Civic much to the delight of his many, cheering fans! Tiago was 6th fastest immediately ahead of Mehdi Bennani in the Proteam Racing Civic with Gabriele next up in 8th place.

Tiago Monteirozoom
Tiago Monteiro
Gabriele Tarquini,Tiago Monteirozoom
Gabriele Tarquini,Tiago Monteiro

Q2 proved to be the most dramatic session of the season so far, 10 minutes of total commitment by the 12 fastest drivers from Q1. Bennani posted a quick time on his very first flying lap which looked likely to put him through to the 5 car shoot-out for pole position in Race 1. Michelisz was unable to set a time as his Civic suffered suspension damage when the car rode over the kerb, forcing the popular Hungarian out of the session and far down the grid for tomorrow’s race.

With just 2 minutes of the session to run, the wily Tarquini took the number 2 Civic out of the pits to challenge the stopwatch. He set a personal best time in the first sector of the lap and was fastest overall in sector 2 and again set a personal best on sector 3 to snatch the fastest time of the session to much applause. In the few seconds remaining Monteiro push his Civic even harder to snatch 3rd fastest time to take both he Castrol Honda Racing cars through to the final 5 car shoot-out.

Each car runs a single lap in Q3 to determine the top five grid positions for race 1 which will see Tiago start on the second row of the grid in 4th position with Gabriele 5th and Mehdi Bennani 6th overall. Michelisz will start in 12th position.

“I am really happy with the balance of my car now and I am looking forward to a really big fight in the race tomorrow,” said Tarquini.

Tiago was also pleased with the performance. “Tire wear, especially with the weight difference, will play an important role in the race tomorrow and I am optimistic that spectators will enjoy a great battle.”

Gabriele Tarquinizoom
Gabriele Tarquini
Mehdi Bennanizoom
Mehdi Bennani

Daisuke Horiuchi, Large Project Leader for WTCC engine development from Honda R&D was pleased with the performance. “We are much closer to the front now at the third race meeting. This is a good team improvement. We have been adjusting the engine mapping to improve traction and working with the drivers to improve the acceleration out of the corners. I am very pleased to have two cars in Q3.”

“After Q2 I was very pleased with the positions. Unfortunately Gabriele did not have a very good lap and I was frustrated that we did not end with two cars in the top three places. Overall, I am really happy since the first test on Friday and all through the practices and qualifying, all four Hondas have shown consistent, strong performances. We are definitely catching-up and that is really encouraging,” said Alessandro Mariani, Managing Director, J.A.S Motorsport.

Norbert Micheliszzoom
Norbert Michelisz
WTCC World Touring Car Championship 2014
Round 03: Hungary Qualifying
Rank Driver (Machine)
1Yvan MULLER (Citroen C-Elysee WTCC)
2Jose LOPEZ (Citroen C-Elysee WTCC)
3Sebastien LOEB (Citroen C-Elysee WTCC)
4Tiago MONTEIRO (Honda Civic WTCC)
5Gabriele TARQUINI (Honda Civic WTCC)
6Mehdi BENNANI (Honda Civic WTCC)
11Norbert MICHELISZ (Honda Civic WTCC)
18Yukinori TANIGUCHI (Honda Civic WTCC)

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