YOKOHAMA ADDS 100TH WTCC RACE TO LONG LIST OF SUCCESSES Japanese tyre manufacturer YOKOHAMA will celebrate its 100th FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) race when the series travels to Portimao, Portugal, on 4 July 2010, for rounds nine...
YOKOHAMA ADDS 100TH WTCC RACE TO LONG LIST OF SUCCESSES
Japanese tyre manufacturer YOKOHAMA will celebrate its 100th FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC) race when the series travels to Portimao, Portugal, on 4 July 2010, for rounds nine and ten of the 2010 season.
YOKOHAMA's relationship with the world's leading touring car championship started in 2006, when the Japanese firm became the official tyre supplier to the series. During their first 100 races together, Andy Priaulx, Yvan Muller and Gabriele Tarquini have been crowned WTCC Champions and the series has grown in popularity to claim a substantial fan base as well as impressive viewing and attendance figures.
The strong ties between YOKOHAMA and the WTCC underline the Japanese tyre manufacturer's rich heritage in motorsport, which dates back to 1963 when YOKOHAMA tyres were first used in Japanese motorsport. The iconic ADVAN brand, currently used in several prestigious racing series across the globe, was introduced in 1978 and has achieved several outstanding achievements since.
Since 1983, numerous champions-in-the-making have raced on YOKOHAMA ADVAN tyres at the Formula 3 Macau Grand Prix race. At the inaugural event, the then 23-year-old Ayrton Senna claimed victory ahead of future Grand Prix stars Gerhard Berger and Martin Brundle. In the past 27 years of the YOKOHAMA-supplied race, other winners include Formula One stars Michael Schumacher and David Coulthard, as well as former-WTCC driver Joerg Mueller.
In 1988 and '89, YOKOHAMA helped to make history with the introduction of the BMW M3. Equipped with YOKOHAMA ADVAN tyres, the M3 race car claimed overall victories in the European Touring Car Championship (ETCC), the German and Italian Touring Car Championships as well as the 24 Hours of Spa-Francorchamps. In the following years the partnership strengthened and other titles were collected, including the British and Australian Touring Car Championships. In 2000, a YOKOHAMA-equipped car claimed the GT class win in the iconic 24 Hours of Le Mans: an incredible victory that has been repeated twice since in the GT and GT2 categories.
YOKOHAMA has also had a strong presence in rallying. In 1988, following success in the Japanese racing scene, YOKOHAMA secured the Asia Pacific Rally Championship title for the first time. In 1991, YOKOHAMA-equipped cars claimed the All Japan Rally Championship titles and in the same year it supplied the first Japanese outfit to win the Cote D'Ivoire Rally in the World Rally Championship (WRC). In 2010, for the first time in the history of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC) an all-female line-up was entered in the series, starting at the Rally d'Italia Sardegna. The team Peugeot Sport Turkiye races a Peugeot 207 Super 2000 rally car fitted with YOKOHAMA ADVAN tyres.
YOKOHAMA has had its fair share of successes overseas as well. In 1994 it achieved a remarkable record that still stands to this day: the YOKOHAMA-equipped Nissan 300 ZX became the first GT class car in the history of the 12 Hours of Sebring to claim overall victory ahead of the prototype sports cars. In the following year, a team supplied by YOKOHAMA achieved the overall victory in the historic Daytona 24 Hours race.
The Japanese tyre manufacturer continues to extend its long list of successes, adding its 100th WTCC race to its history books next weekend. In celebration, the WTCC cars will feature windscreen and door sticker bearing a new 100th race logo. YOKOHAMA is now looking forward to another successful 100 races in conjunction with the series.
All the action from Portimao will be broadcast across Eurosports channels, with Qualifying shown live on Eurosport 2 at 18:30 (CET) on Saturday 3 July. Warm up will be broadcast live on Sunday 4 July at 09:30 (CET) on Eurosport, followed by round nine at 12:45 (CET) and round ten at 17:30 (CET). The behind-the-scenes programme, 'Inside the WTCC with...' will be shown at 23:45 (CET) on Tuesday 6 July, focussing on Dutch driver Tom Coronel.
Portimao track facts
Circuit length: 4,654 metres
Number of laps: 2 x 11
Race distance: 51.19 kilometres