Berthon is best in Alsace GrandEst for a home WTCR high

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Nathanaël Berthon enjoyed the ultimate homecoming with his first win of the 2022 WTCR  season as Circuit l’Anneau du Rhin hosted a memorable first international-level event with two action-packed races.

The WTCR Race gave French driver Berthon a second home event following on from Pau’s season-opener and the 33-year-old didn’t disappoint by beating pole-sitter Néstor Girolami off the Race 1 grid and then resisted intense pressure for his second WTCR career win for Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport.

Honda-powered ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport driver Girolami settled for second, just 0.299s behind Berthon with Gilles Magnus third on the road only to be penalised five seconds and relegated to seventh following contact with Esteban Guerrieri. The Comtoyou Team Audi Sport driver’s demotion handed the final podium spot to Goodyear #FollowTheLeader Mikel Azcona in his BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse Elantra N TCR. The Spaniard finished one place ahead of team-mate Norbert Michelisz as Rob Huff completed the top five ahead of WTCR Trophy rival Tom Coronel.

09 Tiago Monteiro 1 scaled

It would get a whole lot better for Huff in Race 2 with the CUPRA-powered Zengő Motorsport Brit launching off the line ahead of reverse-grid pole driver Mehdi Bennani. While Bennani was a constant threat, second place was as good as it would get for the Comtoyou-run Moroccan. Michelisz moved aside to let team-mate Azcona take third to boost his title dream, as Magnus took fifth.

 

LIQUI MOLY Team Engstler’s Tiago Monteiro bagged a season-best sixth in Race 2, while Dániel Nagy returned from a hand injury to score points in both races. Girolami followed Monteiro home in Race 2 in seventh place and heads into the WTCR’s summer break 35 points behind Goodyear #FollowTheLeader Azcona in the provisional standings.

WTCR Race of Alsace GrandEst Race 1 classification (30 minutes + 1 lap)

1 Nathanaël Berthon (FRA), Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport, Audi RS 3 LMS, 32m59.625s (146.2kph)
2 Néstor Girolami (ARG), ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport, Honda Civic Type R TCR, +0.299s
3 Mikel Azcona (ESP), BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse, Hyundai Elantra N TCR, +1.047s
4 Norbert Michelisz (HUN), BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse, Hyundai Elantra N TCR, +1.586s
5 Rob Huff (GBR), Zengő Motorsport, CUPRA Leon Competición, +2.408s


Fastest lap: Esteban Guerrieri (ARG), ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport, Honda Civic Type R TCR, 1m28.347s (147.5kph)

WTCR Race of Alsace GrandEst Race 2 classification (25 minutes + 1 lap)

1 Rob Huff (GBR), Zengő Motorsport, CUPRA Leon Competición, 26m53.763s (147.7kph)
2 Mehdi Bennani (MAR), Comtoyou Team Audi Sport, Audi RS 3 LMS, +0.896s
3 Mikel Azcona (ESP), BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse, Hyundai Elantra N TCR, +1.114s
4 Norbert Michelisz (HUN), BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse, Hyundai Elantra N TCR, +3.990s
5 Gilles Magnus (BEL), Comtoyou Team Audi Sport, Audi RS 3 LMS, +4.936s
Fastest lap: Mikel Azcona (ESP), BRC Hyundai N Squadra Corse, Hyundai Elantra N TCR, 1m28.334s (147.5kph)

WTCR provisional standings after Round 14 of 20

1 Mikel Azcona, 241 points
2 Néstor Girolami, 206 points
3 Rob Huff, 187 points
4 Gilles Magnus, 165 points
5 Nathanaël Berthon, 160 points

 

         

 

 

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