While the Formula One Turkish Grand Prix was overwritten by rain, the WTCR’s Aragonese program was overwritten by fog, which is why the free practice of the Touring Car World Cup took place later than planned, almost before the time trial, in quick succession. Santiago Urrutia of Lynk & Có proved to be the fastest in the two practices, while Norbert Michelisz (Hyundai) and Attila Tassi (Honda) also started in the top ten.
Already the first stage of the qualification proved to be key to the championship fight, as Esteban Guerrieri was unable to remedy the braking problems encountered during the second training at Honda. So he only finished 18th – true, he could start in 17th place in the first race thanks to Attila Tassi’s penalty for engine replacement, but it is a meager consolation for Münnich Motorsport’s Argentine as lead rider Yann Ehrlacher advanced to Q2 in the 5th point.
Urrutia, who saved her good form, took the lead in front of alpha Jean-Karl Vernay and Zengő Motorsport driver Mikel Azcona. Michelisz went 9th, Boldizs Bence (Cupra) moved out of Q1 with a 12th place, while Attila Tassi dropped to 14th and Gábor Kismarty-Lechner (Cupra) to 22nd with no time.
Centuries past the Q3 position and the reverse pole for the Hungarian interests in the second stage: Azcona slipped off the Superpole by 52 regiments (the Spaniard thus took a 5th and a 6th place next to the 3rd dice), the four-time world champion And Yvan Muller was driving the 10th time, almost 3 tenths behind Michelisz and just 33 milliseconds ahead of Boldiz – last year’s champion could still cut him from the front row, next to his French opponent, in the reverse grid.
Vernay rolled to the field first in the final shootout, but the 2017 TCR champion soon pulled himself out of the odds with a small mistake. Afterwards, Ehrlacher, Nathanaël Berthon (Audi) and 2017 world champion Thed Björk didn’t make a mistake either, but Urrutia couldn’t be stopped: beating one and a half tenths on Ehrlacher pocketed another start. The Frenchman should not be disappointed with his four more points either, as he had an advantage over Guerrieri by 31 points.
The closing races will start at MotorLand Aragon on Sunday at 9:15, 13:15 and 15:15. Eurosport 1 broadcasts all three competitions live, and the first can be watched on Sport 1, the second and third on Sport 2. The 2021 season is expected to begin in mid-May at the Hungaroring.