Pau: Chevrolet preview

CHEVROLET TEAM LOOKS FORWARD TO STREETS OF PAU Chevrolet Lacetti Won At Every Street Course In 2007 After the very successful weekend in Valencia, Spain, the Chevrolet WTCC team is now very much looking forward to the next event in...


Chevrolet Lacetti Won At Every Street Course In 2007

After the very successful weekend in Valencia, Spain, the Chevrolet WTCC team is now very much looking forward to the next event in the streets of Pau in the French Pyrenees. If history is to repeat itself then Chevrolet will again be the team to beat. Indeed, just like in 2007 Chevrolet dominated the first European race of the season, and also last year Chevrolet won at every street course on the calendar, whether it was in France, Portugal or China. By doing so, Chevrolet personifies the WTCC's official slogan, "Real Cars, Real Racing", more than any other manufacturer, so it is only natural that Rob Huff, Alain Menu and Nicola Larini are keen to go street fighting again in France.

Rob Huff: "We had a dream weekend in Valencia, didn't we? We really got Chevrolet's championship bid off the ground after Nic set the tone with second place in Mexico. Actually, both Alain and I were a bit surprised that we walked away with as many points as we did. And the effects of the wins show, as I just attended a dealer meeting in Cologne, Germany, where dealers from all over Europe were absolutely raving about Chevrolet's WTCC success. As for Pau, I will be running with 48 kilos of ballast in the car, so it will be tough on a tight and twisty street course. Especially on the long uphill straight I expect to struggle, as well as in the braking zones and under acceleration out of slow corners. So we will have to do our utmost in qualifying and try to bring home as many points as we can. If we can qualify in the top six and then defend our position in the race we should be able to score in both races. That will be the key this year: to score as many points as possible at every race weekend as even the little points count at the end of the year."

Alain Menu: "It will be a bit different from last year for me. In 2007, I deliberately dropped a few places at the previous race to run with just the weight for my championship points in Pau, which was five kilos. Now I'll be carrying 34 kilos, which will make all the difference. So my objectives have changed accordingly, since pole position for the first race will be next to impossible with a heavy car. I thus will try to qualify in the top seven or eight and try to finish eighth and continue the points tally. If we can manage that and get the reversed grid for race two we can hope for a potential win and keep the Chevrolet Lacetti's street record intact. Mind you, long-term weather forecasts predict rain for next week, so that could mix the field again in qualifying."

Nicola Larini: "I am very happy with the team's result in Valencia but I am still very disappointed with my personal score and we are still trying to understand why the performances of my car were not up to the ones of Rob's and Alain's. It's a pity because I really like Valencia. In any case, all our attention is now geared towards Pau, another circuit I like and one where I did well last year. I simply say that given the fact I will be relatively light in success ballast, I hope I can be in front and clinch the result I have been looking for since a long time."

Eric Neve: "The Spanish result really launched our 2008 campaign and even allowed us to move up to second in the manufacturers' championship, which is a first for Chevrolet. Now we will have to take the success ballast into account for the next races. The competitiveness of the Chevrolet Lacetti was clearly shown by Rob in Valencia, since he scored more points in a single weekend than any other driver has managed to do so far this year. And with the Lacetti's street course pedigree we can look forward to Pau in a rather confident way. In the paddock, Chevrolet France will be hosting a large number of guests as they did last year, again underlining the significance of the WTCC programme within the Chevrolet dealer community. Likewise, the Valencia races helped the brand in Spain in the lead-up to the Madrid Motor Show, where one of the race cars is on display."


In Europe, qualifying and race 1 will be broadcasted live on Eurosport 2, while the warm-up and race 2 will be broadcasted live on Eurosport International.


Throughout the 2008 European season, Chevrolet WTCC Insight will show you the behind-the- scenes of the Chevrolet WTCC racing team. On Saturdays and Sundays, media and fans alike will get the latest information and can ask their questions via the web in Chevrolet's own web cast. The web address is First airings will be at 8.30pm local time (2.30pm Detroit time, 3.30am Seoul time), after which the 10-minute programme can be viewed any time. This year's programmes can also be brought to you as podcasts via the same website. An archive with all the 2007 and 2008 Chevrolet Insight features is available and video reports which can be downloaded as high-resolution broadcast files.


In Denmark, Michael Outzen scored his first Chevrolet Lacetti victory at the Djursland Ring and also took the lead in the Danish Touring Car Championship. Team mate Henrik Lundgaard is fourth in the standings. The Chevrolet Motorsport team still comfortably leads the teams' championship.

In the US, Chevrolet driver Jeff Burton is still second in the point standings after 11 rounds of the 36-race 2008 NASCAR Sprint Cup Series. Fellow Chevrolet driver, Dale Earnhardt Jr. is following in third with Clint Bowyer and Jimmie Johnson in fifth and sixth.

In Argentina, Chevrolet driver Christian Ledesma scored a fifth place finish in Santa Fe and is currently now first Chevrolet driver in the standings in eighth.

In the UK, BTCC rookie Harry Vaulkhard scored a tenth and 12th place finish at Thruxton. He is now 17th in the championship standings.

In Sweden, Tomas Schie finished in eighth at Mantorp Park and is now 12th in the point standings.


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Series WTCC
Drivers Dale Earnhardt Jr. , Jeff Burton , Jimmie Johnson , Henrik Lundgaard , Clint Bowyer , Rob Huff , Nicola Larini , Harry Vaulkhard , Michael Outzen , Christian Ledesma , Alain Menu