Hyundai-powered Azcona aces Hungary WTCR Qualifying for BRC with dramatic pole lap

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Speedy Spaniard Mikel Azcona was the driver to beat in qualifying at WTCR Race of Hungary to clinch pole position for Race 1 at the Hungaroring.

Azcona, driving BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse’s Hyundai Elantra N TCR, emerged on top from a dramatic Q3 shootout to beat Nathanaël Berthon in his Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport RS3 LMS and King of WTCR Yann Ehrlacher.

“That was very tough, I have to say,” said Azcona after securing his first pole position since WTCR Race of Czech Republic at Most last year. “Everything is very close and we are all together, but I’m very happy with this first pole position of the year. Very happy for the team because we are working so hard every single day."


"The car was working amazingly and we need to use this opportunity tomorrow to take the victory. I know it is not going to be easy, but we will use this opportunity and look for the championship as well which is so long.”

Honda-powered Goodyear #FollowTheLeader Néstor Girolami (ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport) set the pace with a strong time of 1m51.86s in the 20-minute Q1 session from local hero Nobert Michelisz (BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse), Berthon and Santiago Urrutia (Cyan Performance Lynk & Co).

Those who just made the cut to progress to Q2 included another local ace Dániel Nagy, who was just on the bubble in P12 for Zengő Motorsport. Gilles Magnus (Comtoyou Team Audi Sport) made it through in P10 despite losing laps for track limits violations, with Yvan Muller in P11 for Cyan Racing Lynk & Co.

Thed Björk, who was fastest in the first free practice session, missed out in P13. The others to find themselves out of luck were Honda-powered home hero Attila Tassi (LIQUI MOLY Team Engstler), Mehdi Bennani (Comtoyou Team Audi Sport), Tom Coronel − who pulled off a brilliant save when his Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport entry started to spin because of damage to his left-rear tyre − and Tiago Monteiro (LIQUI MOLY Team Engstler).

The 10-minute Q2 session was interrupted by a red flag after just three minutes when Nagy’s Zengő Motorsport Cupra Leon Competición went straight on at Turn 1 and hit the barriers as a result of a suspected technical failure. The Hungarian was unhurt in the impact.

Once the session restarted, Magnus stormed to a time of 1m51.684s to progress to Q3. He was joined by Erhlacher, Berthon, Azcona and Esteban Guerrieri’s Honda in that order.

Ma Qing Hua left it late to record a time and jumped straight up to sixth. He missed out on the Q3 shootout and also handed fellow Lynk & Co driver Urrutia the partially reverse-grid pole position for Race 2, the Uruguayan qualifying in P10. Ma’s effort knocked Muller down to P11.

Rob Huff is set to join Urrutia on the front row for Race 2, having qualified ninth. Local hero Michelisz was seventh fastest but will take a six-place grid drop for Race 1 following his accident with Tassi in Pau last month. Girolami was disappointed to qualify eighth, but will at least start from the second row in Race 2.