Tiago Monteiro Tested For Seat Sport The second day of WTCC testing at Valencia was enlivened by the unexpected appearance of Portuguese Formula One driver Tiago Monteiro, who accepted the invitation from SEAT Sport to test their Leon car. The...
Tiago Monteiro Tested For Seat Sport
The second day of WTCC testing at Valencia was enlivened by the unexpected appearance of Portuguese Formula One driver Tiago Monteiro, who accepted the invitation from SEAT Sport to test their Leon car. The idea came from Paulo Ferreira (co-promoter of the WTCC meeting in Porto) and Jaime Puig (SEAT Sport director). "It was a very useful day," Monteiro said. "I tested the car and simulated a race, qualifying session and starts. It was a quite interesting experience as I didn't think that a touring car could be so reactive and fast. It was really exciting and I had lot of fun at the wheel. I was impressed by the team and it was good meeting the works drivers and hearing their positive feedbacks on my driving and my lap times."
TEAMS WORKED ON SET-UP AT VALENCIA
The six WTCC teams that took part in the two-day test Valencia's Ricardo Tormo circuit on Monday and Tuesday focused on trying different set up solutions for the new season. The weather was mostly sunny, with temperatures up to 15C. "The ideal conditions for a pre-season test!" commented SEAT Sport team manager Antonio Rodrigues.
SEAT SPORT WITH THE BALLAST ON BOARD
SEAT Sport ran two works Leon cars in Valencia. On the first day Gabriele Tarquini tested different types of suspensions carrying the success ballast onboard, while Mexican driver Michel Jourdain continued his apprenticeship getting used to the car. "I was delighted to work with the team. They are very professional and the car is excellent," commented Jourdain. On the second day while Monteiro was having his first drive in the Leon Jordi Gene joined Tarquini to work on the set up. A third Leon took part in the test, Roberto Colciago's car run by the SEAT Sport Italia team.
A NEW LACETTI FOR THE CHEVROLET TEAM
At Chevrolet, Nicola Larini and Alain Menu completed a great deal of laps in their 2007 Lacetti cars. Something that their team-mate Robert Huff had already done in Jerez de la Frontera some days earlier. "They put in as many miles as possible," explained team manager Mark Busfield. "We are happy with the test, because none of the cars suffered from technical problems. In a test like this it is difficult to say where you are compared to the others, however we got a good impression."
THREE BMW TEAMS TESTED IN SPAIN
At BMW Team Italy-Spain Alessandro Zanardi drove on the first day. "We also worked on the set up and did not look for fast lap times," team manager Roberto Ravaglia said. On Tuesday the team's new driver, Felix Porteiro, stepped in for Zanardi: the young Spaniard completed 350 km. Jorg Muller and Augusto Farfus spent two full days testing the BMW Team Germany cars that were both sporting Pitot tubes on the front bonnet, as did reigning World Champion Andy Priaulx at BMW Team UK.
CORTHALS BACKED BY SEAT BELGIUM
Pierre-Yves Corthals will take part again in the FIA WTCC, at the wheel of a SEAT Leon run by the French Exagon team and backed by SEAT Belgique and Monroe. After an apprenticeship season with JAS Motorsport and their Honda Accord, the driver from Liège is ready for a more ambitious challenge. "This campaign begins with the best premises," he said. "I have the dynamic support of SEAT's Belgian importer and like last year I am backed by Monroe. The car is an ex SEAT Sport machine that was driven by James Thompson in 2006 and it will be prepared by a professional team managed by Luc Marchetti who has already proved his technical competence. It is difficult to dream of a better package. So now it's up to me ..." Corthals drove his new car for the first time at Magny-Cours: "I was impressed by how easy to drive the car is. My goal for the season is to claim the Independents' Trophy and try to make the top-ten in qualifying and in the races."