WTCR - WTCR Race of Germany - Race 1 virtual press conference | Federation Internationale de l'Automobile

WTCR - WTCR Race of Germany - Race 1 virtual press conference

25.09.20

WTCR - 2020 WTCR Race of Germany - Post Race 1 press conference

In attendance:
Esteban Guerrieri, ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport, first position
Yvan Muller, Cyan Racing, second position
Yann Ehrlacher, Cyan Racing, third position
Tom Coronel, Comtoyou DHL Team Audi Sport, WTCR Trophy winner

Q:
Congratulations Esteban, what a race and what a passing move on Yvan. After that it looked like plain sailing, but it wasn’t quite like that for you, was it?

EG:
It’s never easy at this track. There are so many situations that can hurt you. It’s between being confident and not over-confident. At the start, I followed Yvan and I had an idea from last year where the grip might be in other sections and the part where I could attack a bit more. I saw Yvan braking on the inside a bit early so I tried around the outside, I didn’t know what was going to happen. Then we went side by side out of that corner and very fair going down the hill, the Yvan lifted so basically it was a very fair move. After that to be honest I really pushed on that first lap because I needed to make a gap because we believe the Lynk & Cos are quicker down the straight. I went to the grass in one section, I hit a kerb in another corner somewhere, so it was quite a crazy first lap. I have to say, probably a bit too much. But then after that I created a gap and could with experience from the first lap plus the gap I created I could kind of control it. It was mega, really nice to again win at the Nordschleife, so I’m really happy.

Q:
You won here in 2018, so congratulations again. How did the Goodyear tyres fair?

EG:
Yesterday I was a bit afraid because I had two punctures and I don’t know why. One I probably hit a kerb a bit too hard but the other I don’t know. The last lap I started to get some vibrations, a bit too much understeer, there were some dry sections out there so I took it very easy. I was actually lifting on the Döttinger Höhe, the straight coming to the finish line. I took it easy just in case they were too used. Now we will check and it will be a good reference for tomorrow because it looks like it will be wet again.

Q:
Yvan, P2 for you, talk us through that overlap from your perspective

YM:
I did a pretty good start and my lap on the GP track was OK, but I had to be cautious on the Nordschleife because it was the first time on a wet track this year, so I wanted to be cautious. He used the opportunity to brake a bit later than me. I was a bit too cautious, but anyway he was a bit faster than me so there was nothing I could do. But I am pleased with the second place. It was a bit unexpected after yesterday.

Q:
Yesterday you had an interesting qualifying session – with no lights.

YM:
No, unfortunately I was not good enough. I was not in it and that was my fault. The second lap I had an expectation to improve my lap, but it was far too dark and my lights were not good enough. I had to lift off at one stage because it was impossible.

Q:
Yann, talk us through your race and your qualifying last night.

YE:
First of all, hello everyone, and well done to Esteban and Yvan for the podium. Yeah, for the qualifying yesterday it was deliberate that I did not want to go for another lap because we balanced the risk and the opportunity we would have to put in a better lap and I judged it was a little bit too risky because if you cause a yellow or red flag you are out of qualifying. We were sure to be at least in the top three, so basically that is why we didn’t go for another run even though it looked like we messed up.

Q:
Good to see you on the podium for the race. What happened on that last lap with Thed [Björk]?

YE:
Always the same questions, eh? It was a really good race, we had some nice fights, not easy in those conditions and I had a really fair battle with Tom [Coronel], side by side for a few corners and really fair. And then at the end I was closing the gap on Thed and he let me by, so thanks to him. I got the third place and we are on the podium from P6, so that’s a good result and a good day.

Q:
And an extension of your points lead…

YE:
And that as well, but it’s race three out of 16. It’s still a long way. I will take the races as they come and I will not look at the championship yet, it’s far too early.

Q:
Tom, these blue cars were hunting you down, weren’t they?

TC:
Yeah, there were a few points where I could make a little gap, but I was really concentrating on myself and Yvan. I felt ‘OK, the gap is bigger’, then I looked in my mirror and Thed was in my ass. So OK, probably that was not fast enough. There are some interesting parts I should look back on the video, but I thought the speed was good, everything was alright, there were some dodgy moments where it was very tricky on the straight. I could see the Lynk & Cos were very fast, so they could get my draft really well. But Thed was fair, really fair. I could see it was coming at some stage and I saw directly Yann moving with him, so I could not close it completely. We were side by side for a corner, but we know each other very well so it should be OK. Everybody wants to finish at the beginning of the season, the fights are a little bit more clean than in the end. But good points and I’m happy to be fifth here at the Nordschleife.

Q:
And you looked confident out on track and it’s so good to see you in a position where you are able to be battling for the podium

TC:
You know, we are in a privateer outfit with Comtoyou and an Audi customer and they were helping a lot with the winter testing. If you can see you can at least fight, beath down their neck and put a little pressure on at some points that’s good for the outfit we are in. Of course, I would like to win but you also have to be realistic. But the next race I will try again.