The Honda Civic Type R TCR scored a hard-fought points finish in the first of three WTCR – FIA World Touring Car Cup races at the Wuhan street circuit in China on Saturday.
Esteban Guerrieri, who put his ALL-INKL.COM Münnich Motorsport machine 11th on the grid in an ultra-close qualifying session, started strongly to climb to ninth and made up more ground after an early-race safety-car period to finish seventh.
His team-mate Yann Ehrlacher had climbed from seventh to third and eventually finished fourth on the road after a resolute defence of the final podium position for half the race.
Unfortunately, after the race, he was judged to have jumped the start and was penalised 30 seconds, dropping him to 18th.
Timo Scheider, in the third of the German-run Hondas, started 17th and – like his team-mates – gained several positions at the start. Unfortunately for the two-time DTM, champion, he was forced to pit with a technical issue and finished five laps down in 19th.
Local hero Ma Qinghua qualified 15th, but started 19th due to a penalty carried over from Ningbo. The Boutsen Ginion Racing driver started strongly, but his highlight came during the second half of the race when he passed four cars in one lap to finish a season’s-best 11th.
Team-mate Tom Coronel started 21st, despite only qualifying one second away from pole – and 0.3 seconds away from the sixth row. After making up a spot at the start, his race ended after early contact at Turn One.