The Honda Civic Type R TCR will start all three WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup races in Macau from the front row thanks to a storming performance by ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport in qualifying.
Esteban Guerrieri qualified second for Saturday’s opener and Sunday’s finale; scoring four bonus championship points to keep his title hopes alive in the process.
Team-mate Timo Scheider, whose competitiveness improved steadily through practice, scored a career-best 10th place in second qualifying, which gave him pole position on Race Two’s partially-reversed grid.
Esteban’s effort means the Argentinian will end the season with the WTCR’s King of Qualifying, with a better average position than any other driver in the series, while Timo’s achievement came on what is his debut on Macau’s demanding street circuit.
Yann Ehrlacher, whose post-Suzuka engine change guaranteed he would start Race One from the back of the grid, was a magnificent fourth-quickest in the morning, despite spending the first half of the session towing his team-mates around.
The Frenchman will start Race Three from fifth spot after suffering a gearshift issue on his Q3 lap during the afternoon, without which he believes a better position was achievable.
Ma Qing Hua, on his return to Boutsen Ginion Racing after missing Suzuka, starts Race One from 14th spot and Races Two and three from 16th, but crucially lost time in both sessions after encountering slow traffic on his best laps.
Team-mate Tom Coronel, a podium finisher at Macau in both Formula 3 and World Touring Cars, starts 18th in Race One after also losing vital time on his fastest lap due to a slow backmarker, and 23rd for Sunday’s pair of encounters when the same problem repeated itself twice; losing the Dutchman the chance to capitalise on fresh rubber.
Macanese wildcard Andre Couto, qualified 22nd for his WTCR debut for the Macanese MacPro Racing Team, despite minor technical issues in both sessions.
The local hero used all his Guia Circuit experience to good effect; finding a full second on his final lap in second qualifying – his only unimpeded effort on new tyres – and will start Sunday’s races from 26th.