ROB HUFF AND ALAIN MENU LOOKING FOR HOME WIN
Brands Hatch Marks 100th Touring Car Race For Huff
The Chevrolet WTCC team will play a home match at Brands Hatch next weekend. The first round of the second half of the 2008 WTCC season will not only take the Chevrolet Lacetti drivers to the track nearest the RML team's base, but also to the track where Chevrolet scored their first ever WTCC win in 2006, at the same time achieving Chevrolet's first ever outright win in an FIA sanctioned series. Swiss driver Alain Menu with 36 wins to his name the most successful driver in the BTCC claimed that famous first win in very wet conditions, and won again last year. For him, Brands Hatch is as much his home race as it is to the team or to Rob Huff, who will be celebrating his 100th touring car start in Kent. With Menu being the lightest of the Chevrolets, he is of course keen to make it three Brands wins in a row.
Rob Huff: "The first of the two races will be my 100th touring car start, so it would be a delight to celebrate that with a win, especially since Brands is also the track where I scored my very first touring car victory in 2004. Realistically, of course, it will be very difficult to win with the kilos I'm carrying, as Brands is one of those tracks where it hurts to run heavy. So if I can bag another eight or nine points it will have been a very good weekend for me. Should it rain, as it sometimes does in the UK, then it will be a bit easier for me, but also for all the other heavies, so I don't really mind what the weather does. But obviously racing at home in front of fans and family is always special, so I'm going to put on a good show."
Alain Menu: "After Estoril I will be relatively light at Brands Hatch, carrying only the 23kgs ballast resulting from my 23 points in the championship. Of course, Brands has always been quite good to me in the past, both when I was racing in the BTCC and now in the WTCC with Chevrolet. I can't say that I will win for the third year in a row, but definitely I expect a lot from this event and I aim at being on the podium. It will all depend on how things go in qualifying. Last year, I was on the pole and I won. Would I have qualified second, I would have finished second, so qualifying will be very, very important. Regarding weather conditions, I would prefer to have dry races, but we will take what comes, and it will be the same for everybody. I spent two days testing in Pembrey this week, it was useful, but it's clear that at this stage of the car development, we can only gain some hundredths of a second here and there. It's more a matter of how you feel with the car rather than pure performance."
Nicola Larini: "I am very motivated after the good results we obtained in Estoril. Brands Hatch is a circuit that suits us well and it is the home track of the team, we have always been at the top there. Of course, with 50kgs of ballast I will not be in the best position, I will have the heaviest Lacetti ever seen this year, but my aim is to do well and never give up, as always! And for the rest, I personally hope it will rain!"
Mark Busfield: "We had a good two-day test at Pembrey this week after Estoril, with Alain doing the driving in Nicola's ex race car, which has now become the T-car, as Nicola has switched to our original test car for Estoril. We worked a lot on set up and other fine details and came away with a good feeling. As for Alain's extinguisher issue in Portugal, we have worked with the manufacturer to establish how the extinguisher was empty and discovered it was because of a faulty seal. We had a different system installed at Pembrey and will now use this for the remainder of the season."
CHEVROLET RACING AROUND THE GLOBE
In Denmark, Chevrolet Lacetti driver, Henrik Lundgaard is closing in on the lead of the championship and team mate Michael Outzen is fourth in the standings. The two Chevrolet drivers, in reverse order (Outzen-Lundgaard), took a resounding double victory in Padborg Park on the last weekend of June. After a well-deserved summer break, the next race takes place at the end of August. More information can be found on www.chevroletmotorsportdanmark.dk.
In the US, after 19 of 36 races, Dale Earnhardt Jr. now trails championship leader Kyle Busch by 262 points. Fellow Chevrolet driver Jeff Burton is third, while Jimmie Johnson is fifth. More information can be found on www.nascar.com.
In Argentina, Chevrolet driver, Christian Ledesma has now moved up to fourth in the standings after a first win of the season at the Resistencia track in Chaco. There are still eight rounds to go. More information can be found on www.tc2000.com.ar.
In the UK, Chevrolet Lacetti, driver Harry Vaulkhard, who scored a 14th, a 17th and a 16th place in the three races of the Snetterton round of the BTCC. Vaulkhard is 19th in the championship standings. More information can be found on www.btcc.net.
In Sweden, Chevrolet Lacetti driver, Tomas Schie has dropped a place to sixth in the standings after not finishing at the Falkenberg track last weekend. More information can be found on