Points scored in Bahrain as development of new cars continue

Publicerad 16 april 2017, 20.16 av WestCoast Racing.

Rounds three and four of the 2017 TCR International Series took place at the Bahrain International Circuit this weekend (15-16 April, 2017) in support of the FIA Formula One World Championship, the second outing for WestCoast Racing and their pair of Tegera Infinity supported VW Golf TCRs.

Extreme temperatures welcomed the teams to the desert venue with air temperatures touching 40 degrees at times making conditions for teams and drivers extremely challenging and through practice and into qualifying the Swedish team worked hard to find a setup to suit track and conditions, whilst still getting to grips with the new Golfs.
The team lacked pace in qualifying with Gianni Morbidelli just making Q2, but the unfortunate Giacomo Altoe missing out after his quickest lap was deleted in error by race control, denying him a run in Q2 through no fault of his own.
Morbidelli’s progress into the second session of qualifying ultimately failing to deliver much benefit as the Italian had to settle for an 11th place grid spot for both races.
In both of the weekend’s races the team found that the cars had race pace to run with the competition but with the both cars qualifying down the field and amongst some other usually front running cars – such as champion Stefano Comini and Pepe Oriola – both drivers racing battles gave small reward.
Morbidelli fared best with two hard fought top 10 finishes and Altoe taking the final points in race one, but falling foul of an unfair clash with Oriola to force him out in race two.
Team Manager James Nixon: “I thought we raced well, the cars had good pace in the races and both drivers were in good battles and showed strong race craft. We are having to all learn the cars at the racetracks during a race weekend… Engineers, mechanics and drivers as we have had such limited testing time pre-season with the new VW Golf, but we are making progress and getting to grips with the machinery and we will continue the upward curve in Spa at the next round.”
Gianni Morbidelli in his third season with WestCoast Racing in the TCR International Series echoed Nixon’s sentiments: “For sure we want to go quicker, we are lacking some speed and are all working to find it, and we will, hopefully in time to maintain a title challenge this year. The car is very solid and I know the team can do a good job. Today I had some good racing with Comini and made a lot of places in race two, so there are some things to be positive about.”
Giacomo Altoe was very disappointed following his clash with Pepe Oriola: “In race two, I made a good start and was able to make a clean pass on Oriola. He came back strongly and ran into me forcing me out of the race, it was very unnecessary.”
The TCR Series now moves back to Europe and Spa Francorchamps for races five and six on 5-6 May, when it shares the billing with the FIA World Endurance Championship at the famous Belgian Racetrack.

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