Néstor Girolami and Esteban Guerrieri gave Honda a double in Race 1 of the FIA WTCR at the Circuit de Pau.
The French city track did not allow the protagonists of the top touring series to take the door and fight properly, with most of the positions practically ‘frozen’ at the start, even if something exciting was seen in the end.
Girolami, who started from Pole Position, took the lead at turn 1, keeping behind the other Civic Type R branded ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport in the hands of teammate Guerrieri.
In turn, Yvan Muller remained third at the wheel of Cyan Racing’s Lynk & Co 03 TCR, with Nathanaël Berthon’s (Comtoyou-DHL) Audi RS 3 LMS behind him and his companion-nephew Yann Ehrlacher, who with a click best got behind Ma Qing Hua.
The Chinese of Cyan Peformance also let the Honda of Attila Tassi (Liqui Moly Team Engstler) slip in, but with a very aggressive move made on lap 7 he overtook the Hungarian again, who had to give way to the Hyundai Elantra N by Mikel Azcona (BRC) and at Lynk & Co by Santiago Urrutia (Cyan Performance).
The cars continued in single file until lap 20, when Berthon lost ground and Ehrlacher took advantage of it to slip into the first corner to gain fourth place.
The Frenchman was also attacked by Ma, then also by Azcona who touched him at the hairpin almost sending him against the barriers. Berthon sadly finished last, but Tassi also lost in the chaos, hit by a rival and forced to return to the pits.
Girolami did nothing wrong, gaining a little something on his colleague Guerrieri and winning comfortably, giving Honda and JAS Motorsport their first win of the season.
Muller remained on the podium, Ehrlacher and Ma went to the Top5, even though Azcona tried to surprise the Chinese until the last lap, still keeping Urrutia behind.
Gilles Magnus survived an initial contact with Norbert Michelisz and finished eighth with Comtoyou’s Audi, just ahead of BRC’s Hungarian Hyundai.
Behind the 2019 Champion are the Comtoyou Audi driven by Mehdi Bennani and Tom Coronel, first and second in the WTCR Trophy reserved for individuals, while the points area is completed by the Cupra of Zengő Motorsport with Rob Huff and Dániel Nagy on top, from the Wildcard Éric Cayrolle who takes the Audi of Elite Motorsport / Comtoyou 14a to the finish line (even if transparent for the absolute) and of the Honda of Tiago Monteiro (Liqui Moly Team Engstler), author of an error on lap 12 that sent him straight in one of the few escape routes.
Thed Björk retired due to a problem with the splitter of his Lynk & Co, repaired in record time by Cyan Performance after the bang in Qualifying.
#WTCR #Pau #Honda #double #GirolamiGuerrieri #Race
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