Maintained World Championship lead with double podium in tough Portuguese races

Thed Björk secured a double podium in the FIA WTCC Race of Portugal on the challenging street circuit Vila Real, enabling Polestar Cyan Racing to maintain the World Championship lead for manufacturers.

The four-time STCC champion has moved up to second in the drivers’ championship, just four points from the top spot. Björk finished third in the opening race and challenged race leader Norbert Michelisz in the main race for the victory, despite carrying 30 kilos more, to finish second.

“My goal was to fight for the podium in both races, gain on the championship lead and we managed just that. The team gave me a really good car this weekend that provided me with a lot of confidence, despite carrying full weight. I am very happy to be just four points from the World Championship lead at mid-point of the season,” said Thed Björk.

Team-mate Nicky Catsburg dropped to third in the driver standings but managed to secure two top-five finishes and is just ten points from the championship lead.

“I would say that I am quite happy with the results considering the weight difference to Honda at this track. I lost some points, but to still be third in the championship and that close to the lead at this stage in the championship is really good,” said Nicky Catsburg.

Volvo leads Honda by 28 points as the half-way point of the 2017 FIA World Touring Car Championship season has been reached.

“The result from this weekend was pretty much what we could hope for. Thanks to a massive effort by everyone in the team, we leave Vila Real and the fantastic crowd with a maintained championship lead. We are quite pleased and our position for the remainder of the season is excellent,” said Alexander Murdzevski Schedvin, Head of Motorsport at Polestar.

Néstor Girolami claimed two top-ten finishes after suffering from technical issues and hopes to bounce back at his home race in Argentina.

“I had vibration issues in the races today and that stopped me from getting better results unfortunately. I hope to secure a much better result in my home race, like we did in Marrakech and Monza. We will keep pushing, that is for sure,” said Néstor Girolami.

The WTCC Race of Argentina takes place on July 15-16th: http://wtcc.polestar.com

WTCC Race of Portugal
Circuit: Circuito Internacional de Vila Real
Length: 4785 m
Lap record (WTCC): 1:58.385 (Huff)

Results
Race 1 – Top 5
1 Mehdi Bennani Citroën C-Elysée 11 laps
2 Tiago Monteiro Honda Civic +0.799
3 Thed Björk Volvo S60 +1.632
4 Tom Chilton Citroën C-Elysée +2.447
5 Nicky Catsburg Volvo S60 +4.459

8 Néstor Girolami Volvo S60 +12.317

Race 2 – Top 5
1 Norbert Michelisz Honda Civic 13 laps
2 Thed Björk Volvo S60 +0.480
3 Tiago Monteiro Honda Civic +2.200
4 Nicky Catsburg Volvo S60 +4.457
5 Rob Huff Citroën C-Elysée +4.587

9 Néstor Girolami Volvo S60 +24.864

MAC3
1 Volvo 4:05.355
2 Honda +3.992

Championship Standings
Drivers’ – Top 5
1 Tiago Monteiro Honda Civic 164 pts
2 Thed Björk Volvo S60 160 (-4)
3 Nicky Catsburg Volvo S60 154 (-10)
4 Norbert Michelisz Honda Civic 137 (-27)
5 Mehdi Bennani Citroën C-Elysée 133 (-31)

9 Néstor Girolami Volvo S60 58 (-106)

Manufacturers’
1 Volvo 494 pts
2 Honda 466 (-28)

Compensation weights for Portugal
Model – Time difference – Weight
Volvo S60 Polestar – 0.0 sec – +80 kg
Citroën C-Elysée – 0.0 sec – +80 kg
Honda Civic – +0.3 sec – +50 kg
Chevrolet Cruze – +0.6 sec – +20 kg
Lada Vesta +1.2 sec – +0 kg

TV Schedule
https://www.fiawtcc.com/watch-it-on-tv
http://www.eurosportplayer.com

2017 FIA World Touring Car Championship Entry List
No – Driver – Team – Car
3 – Tom Chilton – GBR – Sébastien Loeb Racing – Citroën C-Elysée
5 – Norbert Michelisz – HUN – Honda Racing Team JAS – Honda Civic
8 – Aurélien Panis – FRA – Zengő Motorsport – Honda Civic WTCC
9 – Tom Coronel – NED – ROAL Motorsport – Chevrolet RML Cruze TC1
12 – Rob Huff – GBR – Münnich Motorsport – Citroën C-Elysée WTCC
18 – Tiago Monteiro – POR – Honda Racing Team JAS – Honda Civic
22 – Manuel Fernandes – POR – RC Motorsport – Lada Vesta WTCC
24 – Kevin Gleason – USA – RC Motorsport – Lada Vesta WTCC
25 – Mehdi Bennani – MOR – Sébastien Loeb Racing – Citroën C-Elysée
27 – John Filippi – FRA – Sébastien Loeb Racing – Citroën C-Elysée
34 – Ryo Michigami – Honda Racing Team JAS – Honda Civic WTCC
61 – Néstor Girolami – ARG – Polestar Cyan Racing – Volvo S60 TC1
62 – Thed Björk – SWE – Polestar Cyan Racing – Volvo S60 TC1
63 – Nicky Catsburg – NED – Polestar Cyan Racing – Volvo S60 TC1
68 – Yann Ehrlacher – FRA – RC Motorsport – Lada Vesta WTCC
86 – Esteban Guerrieri – ARG – Campos Racing – Chevrolet Cruze TC1
99 – Daniel Nagy – HUN – Zengő Motorsport – Honda Civic WTCC

FIA World Touring Car Championship 2017 Calendar
WTCC Race of Morocco (Marrakech): 7-9 April
WTCC Race of Italy (Monza): 28-30 April
WTCC Race of Hungary (Hungaroring): 12-14 May
WTCC Race of Germany (Nürburgring Nordschleife): 25-27 May
WTCC Race of Portugal (Vila Real): 23-25 June
WTCC Race of Argentina (Termas de Río Hondo): 15-16 July
WTCC Race of China (Shanghai Ningbo Circuit): 13-15 October
WTCC Race of Japan (Twin Ring Motegi): 27-29 October
WTCC Race of Macau (Circuit de Guia): 17-19 November
WTCC Race of Qatar (Losail International Circuit): 30 November-1 December

Contact Details
Johan Meissner, Press Manager
johan.meissner@polestar.com
+46(0)70 241 3234

About Polestar
Polestar is Volvo Car Group’s performance road car brand and was founded by Polestar Racing, today known as Cyan Racing. Polestar’s birth was a result of Cyan Racing’s race engineers desire to explore how technology behind the multiple title-winning success in racing could be applied to the performance of road going Volvo cars, on all roads and conditions in everyday life. The first road-going performance Concepts were launched in 2010 and the first performance cars, based on the Volvo S60 and V60, were ready in 2012. In 2015, Volvo Cars acquired Polestar Performance. Today, Polestar builds the S60 and V60 Polestar, a 367-hp performance road car with over 250 developments over-and-above the standard Volvo products. It also offers Polestar Engineered performance hardware upgrades and powertrain software optimisations for existing Volvo products.

About Cyan Racing
Founded in 1996 and today known as Cyan Racing, the privately owned and operated company has been Volvo Car Group’s official team in motorsport since its conception. Cyan Racing has claimed multiple titles with the Volvo 850, S40, C30 and S60. Today, the company enjoys success on track with the Polestar road car brand as Polestar Cyan Racing in pursuit of both the World Touring Car Championship and Swedish GT, racing the Volvo S60 Polestar road going performance car.