Puebla: Tom Coronel race notes

Double Independents Win for Tom Coronel in Mexico The World Touring Car Championship 2005 continued at the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. The Circuito Miguel E. Abed was the stage for the first Mexican round of the WTCC. For...

Double Independents Win for Tom Coronel in Mexico

The World Touring Car Championship 2005 continued at the other side of the Atlantic Ocean. The Circuito Miguel E. Abed was the stage for the first Mexican round of the WTCC. For Tom Coronel and the SEAT Toledo Cupra prepared by GR Asia and entered by SEAT Team Holland the new racetrack in the series brought the maximum result. In both races over 17 laps Coronel won the privateer class. Overall victory went to Alfa Romeo driver Fabrizio Giovanardi in the first race and SEAT works driver Peter Terting in the second.

Racing on this brand new race track was not all that easy. "Already on our first laps in practice the tarmac started to loosen. Furthermore the track was extremely slippery so it was hard to find any traction. This made it hard to find a setup for the car. After all our complaints the organisation decided to put concrete over the tarmac in order to improve the grip", Tom Coronel said.

However the result everybody was hoping for did not come. "There was a black racing line. When you were not on in you had a problem. I saw many cars parked at the side of the track with quite a lot of damage. Even experienced guys like Jorg Muller were caught out", Coronel continued. "I did not have any reason to complain. The car was quite OK and I was driving with my brains all the time. Of course I knew I could co faster a number of times, but finishing high up in the privateer battle was my main purpose this weekend". Coronel's good performance started already in free practice when he was just outside the top ten. "You really have to think what you are doing here. The circuit lays on an altitude of 2400 meters, so there is less oxygen in the air as we are used to. I am quite fit, but this situation made it quite heavy for me. Also the car needs to be taken care of. You must give it plenty of revs at the start, otherwise it just dies. Due to the fact that a number of drivers were a bit too rough in the previous race and SEAT works driver Peter Terting was set back ten places due to an engine change I was promoted from 13th in qualifying to ninth on the grid. I had a reasonable start and immediately I was fighting with some works drivers that were trying to move up. I changed positions a couple of times, but as soon as I was in eighth place I had only one thing on my mind. Just keep this position, no matter what. In the WTCC the top eight of the first race will start in reverse order in the second race. I managed to stay in eighth until the finish so I did not only score my first point for the general standings this year, but I was also on pole for the second race, next to SEAT works driver Peter Terting, but ahead of the BMW of Antonio Garcia. Right after the start I at to both let them go, but was not that easy for the rest of the field. All I did was fighting and defend my position as much as possible. Towards the end I was in sixth place and SEAT works driver Rickard Rydell was behind me. I asked on the radio if there were any team orders. They just told me that if he wanted to go past he would have to work for it. He didn't to that so I crossed the line in sixth place. This also brought me the second independent victory of the day. I think I have to expand my house now as the awards for the victory are extremely big", a happy Coronel said.

After the race the stewards decided to add 30 seconds to the time of Roberto Colciago. The JAS Honda driver drove a storming race from 20th on the grid to third, but his moves during his march through the field were a bit too rough according to race control. Tom Coronel moved up to fifth in the second race and now has five points in the general standings. In the Michelin Independents Trophy Coronel is now in second place with 47 points.

After Puebla the WTCC will head for Spa Francorchamps in Belgium. Tom Coronel is supported in the WTCC by: SEAT-Pon Car, BBS, McGregor and Splitfire Sparkplugs.

-tcr-

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About this article
Series WTCC
Drivers Fabrizio Giovanardi , Antonio Garcia , Tom Coronel , Jorg Muller , Peter Terting , Rickard Rydell , Roberto Colciago