CRUZE TO START ITS EUROPEAN RACING CAREER IN FRIENDLY PAU Chevrolet Drivers Eager To Continue On The Positive Trend Initiated In Marrakech WELLINGBOUROUGH / ZURICH, 8th May 2009 From the newest to the oldest: the World Touring Car Championship...
CRUZE TO START ITS EUROPEAN RACING CAREER IN FRIENDLY PAU
Chevrolet Drivers Eager To Continue On The Positive Trend Initiated In Marrakech
WELLINGBOUROUGH / ZURICH, 8th May 2009 From the newest to the oldest: the World Touring Car Championship is continuing to visit street circuits, but the next stop in France for Round 4 of the 2009 season has little in common with the previous event. If Marrakech is the latest urban track to have been built, Pau is the oldest still in use in Europe: the superb and technical circuit in the quiet city in the Pyrenees hosted its first car competition back in 1901!
Pau is dear to the Chevrolet team not only because of the warmth of its inhabitants and its typical French atmosphere: Alain Menu clinched a wonderful victory there in 2007 and Nicola Larini was second last year. Following the double win obtained in Morocco last week, the team is hoping to give the new Cruze the best debut on European soil.
Rob Huff: "The last couple of days, after coming back from Marrakech, I have been pretty busy answering phone calls and e-mails, but I don't mind: we had a wonderful week-end in Morocco and I am very pleased with the good result. We have been successful in Pau in recent years, although race 2 with the rain last year was very difficult, but I am confident that if we are clever and avoid trouble, we can make a good result this time too".
Nicola Larini: "Winning that first race that had been in the air for so long was great, but I haven't been celebrating much. I always look forward and I am always focused on the next race. I am fully motivated for Pau, as I have always done well there. I think we can go for another good result, although we know that rear-wheel drive cars are well-suited for the French track".
Alain Menu: "I like Pau very much and I won there in 2007. Pau is a street circuit, of course, but very different from Marrakech. The fact that it has only one real straight should be good for us, but it also has some long slow corners where a good set-up is essential. Pau is new for the Cruze, so we will have to see how it performs there, but I think we can do well this time round too, certainly in race 2".
Mark Busfield: "The team was elated with the results in Morocco, but there is no time to rest, as Pau is already around the corner. The cars arrived from Marrakech only Thursday noon, so we will spend the weekend stripping, doing the necessary repairs and rebuilding them. Fortunately enough, they came back in pretty good condition. On Tuesday we will do a shake-down at the Mira testing facility and from there the trucks will go direct to France, as they have to arrive in Pau next Thursday morning, to take up position in the paddock, which is normally a local park with trees and sports facilities, so it's very tight to get everything in. We have had no time for testing this week or any new developments, but still, we can introduce some minor changes to the set-up based on what we learnt in Marrakech".
Eric Nève: "The timing of the double victory in Morocco could not have been better, as the Cruze is just being introduced into European markets. We go to Pau with much more confidence, but also knowing that the competition will be tough. As always in France, we expect a lot of support from Chevrolet fans and I am particularly glad that this year we will be involved in a very interesting educational program. On one hand, we will deliver, for pedagogic purposes, three Chevrolet cars to three local technical schools; on the other hand, we will have a student from one of these schools integrated in our mechanics' team for the entire week-end. This is a very concrete example of what a motorsports programme can contribute to local communities around a race track".
PAU WTCC ON TV
In Europe, warm-up and the races will be broadcasted live on Eurosport International.
CHEVROLET RACING AROUND THE GLOBE
In the US, Chevy drivers obtained a triple victory in Talladega, with Keselowski, Earnhardt and Newman trusting the podium, and nearly missed to repeat it in Richmond, where Stewart, Burton, Newman and Martin finished in the top four, just behind the winner. Jeff Gordon continues to lead the overall standings, Stewart lies third. More information can be found on www.nascar.com. ./.. In the UK, the Chevrolet Lacetti are continuing successfully their career in the highly-competitive British Touring Car Championship (BTCC). RML's Jason Plato and Mat Jackson lie fourth and eighth respectively, after Round 3 and 4 in Thruxton, which saw Jackson winning race 2. Tempus Motorsport's Harry Vaulkhard is fourteenth. More information can be found on www.btcc.net.