Great come back for Tiago Monteiro in Valencia ! Choosing between half empty and half full, Tiago Monteiro and his manic optimism went with the second option, even though the SEAT driver drank his chalice down to the last drop this weekend...
Great come back for Tiago Monteiro in Valencia !
Choosing between half empty and half full, Tiago Monteiro and his manic optimism went with the second option, even though the SEAT driver drank his chalice down to the last drop this weekend at Valencia for his second appearance in the WTCC (World Touring Cars Championship).
Like at Zandvoort, where he got to know his new working environment for the first time in the context of an official competition, Tiago immediately set up camp in the front lines of the time displays at the circuit de la Communitat Valencia Ricardo Tormo. Holder of the third best time in the last free session, the Seat Leon No. 18 driver began in qualifying a journey across the Spanish desert, which never reached an end despite an oasis in the second race, where the Portuguese driver's performance will long be remembered in the annals of the series.
"The free testing sessions enabled us to find an excellent balance on the car and everything looked good for qualifying. My lack of experience cost me dear, and I learned where I need to make progress fast. We put on new tires for the first time of the weekend during qualifying. The car's handling was radically different than in previous sessions and I needed to be able to anticipate the change," Tiago explains, making amends, "I didn't manage to do it in my first two tries, and I couldn't do it in the last one either! I wanted to modify the setup for my third qualifying lap. The operation usually takes two minutes, but the something got stuck and I couldn't even get out of the pits!"
The first race at Valencia also brought misfortune to Tiago, who was violently smashed into by another driver at the start. The resulting melee left six cars in the gravel, including Tiago's.
Since the starting grid for the second race was determined by the finishing order of the first, Tiago found himself pushed to the back of the line on Sunday afternoon! "There is only one attitude to take in order to strike back against bad luck: have a good time racing and make it a learning experience for the rest of the championship!" Tiago explains. "I made it up to 12th place by passing fourteen cars in twelve laps. It was one of the most exciting races of my career, with very enthusiastic but exciting duels. The end of the weekend is therefore very positive for me and I hope that we will make the most of this momentum in order to handle the next meeting well."
Next race weekend: Pau, June 2-3.
-credit: tiagomonteiro.com k