Podium for Tiago Monteiro at Paul Ricard
"We made a step forward compared to the last race"
Tiago Monteiro has secured his first podium finish of the 2014 FIA World Touring Car Championship, WTCC season. Driving the Honda Civic on the French circuit of Paul Ricard, the Portuguese driver led more than half of race two after a brilliant start. However, in the second half of the race, he was unable to hold off the charging Citroën and eventually crossed the line in a fantastic third place. This result added to his eight place finish in race one.
The second race weekend of the WTCC season began promisingly for Tiago, the Honda driver managing to reduce the gap to his main rivals. After some good practice sessions, Tiago secured 8th and 3rd places on the grid for the Paul Ricard events.
In race one, Tiago fought hard to move up the hierarchy, without taking too many risks and crossed the finish line in the points with 8th place.
In the 2nd race, Tiago made a better start than his opponents and went into the lead in the first corner. He pulled out a gap of four seconds over his pursuers before his efforts were thwarted by the appearance of the safety car. The neutralization of the race allowed the Citroën drivers to catch up to with Tiago and despite a heroic battle, the Honda Civic # 18 driver was eventually forced to yield under pressure, finishing on the 3rd step of the podium.
"I am very happy with this result. This is a great reward for all the hard work we did. I could of won the race, the track conditions were good and the Honda Civic was well balanced. I pulled away early, but I knew that sooner or later the Citroëns would come back at me. Everything was going perfectly well when the safety car destroyed all the hard work we put in early in the race, "said Tiago.
"I’m having a word to Loeb, as he caused this neutralization" he jokingly added.
"We made a step forward compared to the last race, but there is still a lot to do. The team secured two major podium finishes this weekend, which gives us a boost and extra motivation. A few more test sessions and some more development and I think we will be even better. "
Tiago Monteiro and JAS Motorsport Honda now have two weeks to prepare for the third round of the FIA WTCC that will take place in Hungary on the 3rd and 4th May.
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