HUFF AND MENU JOIN ARGENTINE CHEVROLET TEAM FOR CLASSIC
2006 Winner Alain Menu Looking To Repeat Performance
As has been the case in the past, the Chevrolet WTCC team is sending its drivers to the Buenos Aires 200-kilometre touring car race in support of Chevrolet Argentina’s title bid in the most spectacular of the South American touring car championships.
The last time Alain Menu, Rob Huff and Nicola Larini gave their colleagues a helping hand – in 2006 – it resulted in a resounding win for Menu and co-driver Matias Rossi.
For Menu it was the completion of his personal Argentine podium, after a third place finish in 2004 and a second place in 2005. For Rob Huff 2008 will be his second visit to Argentina, while Nicola Larini can’t make the trip due to previous engagements.
The Italian’s place will be taken by Brazilian Hoover Orsi, emphasizing the global connections within Chevrolet’s racing community.
• QUOTESJorge Maquiez (Senior Commercial Supervisor Chevrolet TC2000 Program):
“We are very happy to again have the WTCC drivers with us for what is the biggest event of the year in South American motorsports. Actually, we will be the only brand bringing in foreign drivers who are driving for the same brand elsewhere in the world, and this proves once again the strength of a global brand like Chevrolet. In 2006, the association between TC2000 and WTCC drivers worked very well for Chevrolet, as we won the race; last year, we could not do it because of a date clash, so we are really enthusiastic that we are able to repeat the experience in 2008. The advantage, this year, is that both Alain and Rob know the track, the race and the TC2000 cars; on the other hand, the 2008 championship is more competitive and closely-fought than ever.
“The seven first races have seen seven different winners, which is something unprecedented in the TC2000. We had a relatively slow start of the season, but then our cars have been gaining in reliability and in performance, and we won our first race in round 6, in Resistencia. Currently, our best-placed driver, Cristian Ledesma, is lying fourth in the standings and a win or a podium finish in the Buenos Aires event (the eighth round out of 14 in the TC2000 calendar), which is granted almost double points, would be extremely helpful to re-open the battle for the title as we get into the second part of the season. Ledesma will race with Alain Menu, while Marcelo Bugliotti will pair with Rob Huff like in 2006 and Ricardo Risatti will share the wheel with Hoover Orsi, who is a Chevrolet driver in the Brazilian stock-car championship.”
Alain Menu: “It’s always great to go to Argentina for the Buenos Aires race. Obviously, my results there bias my opinion since I finished on the podium each time I raced there, but the atmosphere is just great. The team always makes you feel welcome and the spectators just love the show and appreciate the fact that Chevrolet’s WTCC drivers travel around the world to run in their national championship. Needless to say I’ll be looking at the same kind of result this year. ".
Rob Huff: “I first went to Argentina two years ago and all the great stories Alain had told me and Nic proved to be absolutely correct. It is the main race of the Argentine championship and you can feel that special atmosphere from the very first day of practice. The track is of course great with lots of history, and the cars themselves are quite challenging to drive as well. They’re comparable to our Chevrolet Lacettis we use in the WTCC, but they have more aerodynamic devices to play with, which gives them more downforce. The Chevrolet guys seem to have a bit more competition this year, so hopefully we can be helpful in getting their championship bid back on course.”