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Jun 27, 2014 - 03:41 PM
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FIA WTCC Newsletter 26
Posted by: newsla on Jun 27, 2014 - 03:37 PM
Sports Cars
FIA WTCC Newsletter 26


CITROËN ON TOP AFTER EUROPEAN TOUR

The Race of Belgium marked the end of the European part of the 2014 season. As cars and equipment take the sea for the South American and Asian races that compose the second half of the season, it is a good moment to take stock of the championships situation.
There is no doubt that Citroën has made a stunning debut in the FIA WTCC, taking all wins but one in the 13 races held so far (the uneven number is due to the cancellation of Race 2 at the Slovakiaring, because of heavy rain).

 

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José María López will arrive in Argentina, his home land, as the leader in the Drivers’ standings, with a 39-point advantage over Yvan Muller and 65 over Sébastien Loeb. The Argentine is also the driver with most wins so far (five, against 4 and 2, respectively, to his direct rivals) but no doubt that the internal affair between the Citroën drivers is far from an end.

The Honda cars are progressing well and after ten podium finishes are now ready to climb on the top step of the rostrum, an honour that the Chevrolet cars developed by RML have already enjoyed thanks to Gianni Morbidelli’s win at the Hungaroring.

LADA is also making steps forward and its drivers have scored points in seven occasions, clinching also the best results ever for the Russian auto maker.

In the Yokohama Teams’ Trophy, three independent squads using Chevrolet cars (ROAL Motorsports, ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport and Campos Racing) are leading the standings, while the Drivers’ competition has seen an almost ‘en plein’ by Franz Engstler, who took all race wins except two, which were conquered by his team-mate Pasquale Di Sabatino and 2013 ETCC champion Petr Fulín.

PSA CEO CARLOS TAVARES GETS THE THRILL

The CEO of the PSA group, Carlos Tavares, was at Spa-Francorchamps to encourage the Citroën team.Being a former rally driver, who still enjoys amateur racing nowadays, the PSA boss couldn’t resist testing the C-Elysée. After being coached by Sébastien Loeb, he took the wheel of the C-Elysée and gave himself the thrill of driving the Citroën on one of the most beautiful tracks in the world.
He was obviously delighted with the experience. “It was a privilege and a pleasure to drive a machine that is being so successful”, he commented,“I was impressed with the performance level of the car in all aspects: chassis, engine, brakes. I really want to congratulate the engineering team that has designed and built such a racer and our drivers for their talent in extracting the quintessence from the C-Elysée.”

A FAST LADY STILL IN LOVE WITH TOURING CARS

Christine Beckers, better known simply as “Christine”, was one of the pioneer lady drivers in top international racing. In her career, which spanned through the ‘70s and the ‘80s, she drove almost everything, from powerful sport and stock cars at Le Mans and Daytona 24 Hours to 4x4 at the Paris-Dakar Rally. But the Belgian driver is known mostly for her successes in touring car racing. No surprise, then, she wouldn’t miss the WTCC in Belgium.

Beckers’ touring car heyday came with Alfa Romeo, when she piloted the nimble GTVs in the European Touring Car Championship.“It was still endurance racing then; three-, six-, nine- and 24-hour races; with just two drivers. The adrenaline kept you going; you barely slept.”
She still follows today’s touring car championships, especially when there are drivers competing she knows personally.“Yvan Muller, Gabriele Tarquini… As long as there is a driver in the race I know, I’ll watch and root for him. The racing these days is so much more spectacular, so that’s good fun to watch.”

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