Oschersleben: Tiago Monteiro qualifying report

Tiago didn't win Oschersleben's lottery SEAT Sport driver couldn't believe his fate Tiago Monteiro had a very testing afternoon in Oschersleben (Germany), venue for the ninth of twelve race weekends of the FIA World Touring Car Championship ...

Tiago didn't win Oschersleben's lottery

SEAT Sport driver couldn't believe his fate

Tiago Monteiro had a very testing afternoon in Oschersleben (Germany), venue for the ninth of twelve race weekends of the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC). Despite a convincing free practice session where he recorded the third best time overall, the SEAT Leon TDI no.5 driver was unable to reach the second phase of qualifying and will therefore start on the last row of the grid for the first German race. Two other SEAT Sport drivers, Yvan Muller and Jordi Gene, are also a fair distance from pole position and the reason for this anomaly was rain. The downpour that hit at the beginning of the session took the drivers by surprise and only those who managed to bank a time in the opening minutes of the session were able to make it through.

Therefore the new hierarchy this weekend was dictated by the bad weather and Tiago Monteiro could do little else than smile about it. "I never experienced such a qualifying session. It was more than a gigantic lottery. We started the session with slicks tyres for a slightly damp track, thinking the circuit would start to dry but the weather brutally changed and when we took to the track after having changed our tyres, we found out the conditions had totally changed," Tiago explained. "You had to dare to a risk at some point, but this time it cost us dearly. Had we stayed on track it would have been a totally different story and different results. Gabriele Tarquini went another way and he managed to win the jackpot on a track that was not especially friendly to us."

With Tarquini on pole position and three other cars in the second half of the field, SEAT Sport will have to define a careful race strategy that will see them finish in a good position for the second race. It is a collective challenge, but also individual, with SEAT Sport having to defend its first place in the drivers and manufacturers championships. Here Tiago explains why a driver must be prepared for all possible scenarios and that sometimes one of them can just come out of the blue... "There is always a first time. Today I am in the worst position on the starting grid ever and sometimes you can't believe you're on the last row. But there's no point in making a big drama out of it. I will try to make up as many positions as I can in the first race and come close to the top 10. If I can do this then points would be a realistic target in the second race. We will do our best to leave Oschersleben with a positive review. We already have an unusual story to tell, but I hope it will include a happy ending!"

Warm-up and the races can be followed on Eurosport, at 8:15AM, for the warm up and at 11:45AM and 1:30PM (UK Time) for both races.

-credit: tiagomonteiro.com

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About this article
Series WTCC
Drivers Tiago Monteiro , Yvan Muller , Gabriele Tarquini , Jordi Gene