Nestor Girolami and Tiago Monteiro ensured a double-points finish in a tough opening WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup race on the streets of Macau.
‘Bebu’ finished 14th for ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport with KCMG driver Tiago on his tail, one place behind.
The Argentinian had started 17th, but made a good start to make up a position on the flat-out blast along Macau’s wide shoreline section. He then took advantage of several incidents ahead to gain further positions, scoring two points to keep himself sixth in the Drivers’ Championship.
KCMG driver Tiago started 14th, but lost several positions on the run down to Lisboa on the opening lap. Latching onto Bebu’s tail, he followed his fellow Civic Type R TCR driver throughout the race.
Tiago’s team-mate, Attila Tassi, started 20th and finished there; the young Hungarian’s potential for progress dented by a hard hit up the rear on the first lap that broke his exhaust and affected his acceleration throughout.
Bebu’s Münnich team-mate, Esteban Guerrieri, began the race leading the championship by two points.
But starting from 26th and last – his penalty for having his car’s engine changed on Friday – he drove a careful race to preserve his machinery for Sunday’s double-header.
Rising as high as 20th, he pitted late-on to allow his team to change the set-up of his car with the aim of gaining information that can be used tomorrow.
He is now second in the Drivers’ standings, 18 points away from the lead, while Münnich are now third in the Teams’ rankings.
KC Motorgroup’s Jim Ka To did not start the race; his car being withdrawn from the rest of the weekend due to the severity of the damage sustained in his qualifying incident.