In Pau for the 7th and 8th races of the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC)
Tiago Monteiro returns this weekend to the scene of his first exploits in the FIA World Touring Car Championship (WTCC). Indeed, it was at Pau (France) that the Portuguese driver gleaned his first two podiums last year in the world championship. Two weeks after the disillusion of Valencia, the SEAT Sport driver hopes that the harvest will be as good this year as well. At Pau, the SEAT León No. 18 car will no longer have the thirty-two kilograms of ballast that it was dragging around like a ball and chain, a consequence of his win at Puebla (Mexico) but it will still carry twelve extra kilos.
"I really like city circuits and Pau in particular. It's a chance for me to see the French fans and friends, and to rediscover an extremely technical and beautiful circuit," Tiago declared, "I have excellent memories of this meeting of the championship since I was the most competitive SEAT Sport driver last year with two podiums. It will be difficult to revive such quality results with such competitive and numerous competitors, but that will be my objective to get myself back into championship contention and to help SEAT Sport to reach its objectives."
With some thirty drivers simultaneously driving on the narrow, twisting 2,760 meter-long circuit, Tiago's first mission will be to try to finish a qualifying lap without stumbling in dense traffic. "A favorable position on the starting grid is a mandatory prerequisite for having two good races at Pau. As will all city circuits, Pau does not provide many overtaking opportunities and the three key factors for the weekend are a good qualifying session, a good start, and trying not to touch the rails too closely!"
But a fourth key factor should arrive downtown at the same time as Tiago Monteiro and the WTCC and that is rain, predicted to arrive early in the weekend. "In the event of rain some doors might open and allow for overtaking; it makes it possible to have spectacular races but for us drivers, we will have to think about the possibility of rain starting with the free sessions where we will determine the set-ups for the rest of the weekend."
The Pau races will be broadcasted live on Eurosport, Sunday June 1 at 10:45 AM and 2:00 PM.